I have tried since the recent (30/10/12) IEA sponsored presidential debate, to ignore the President John Dramani Mahama’s lies at that august forum watched live by all Ghanaians, regarding how much it cost to train Ghanaian doctors in Cuba, which he said cost only $5000.
However, listening to Felix Ofosu Kwakye, a communications team member of the government speak on Joyfm’s news and current affairs program Newsfile (03/11/12), I am angered by his (Felix) repeated calling of Nana Akufo Addo a liar yet insisting that his boss John Maham “slipped” rather than lied.
First of all, I believe Ghanaians deserve to know the full facts from President Mahama about whether the Cuban government still trains our students as a cultural exchange program, or it is paid for, because some students have been trained for free and through a much better negotiation executed by Aliu Mahama, by the same Cuban policy.
Secondly, can Felix come again on how a president, who was very careful and hesitant to even use his last rebuttal option, to according to him, correct a supposed wrong impression that Nana Akufo Addo had created regarding how much the Cuban doctors training would cost Ghana, slip on the very issue he was correcting Nana Addo on?.
Particularly, when Mahama had prefaced his rebuttal as setting the records straight and when after doing this, he continued without correcting himself, to accuse Nana Addo of conjuring “pie in the sky figures” to confuse people.
If, Mahama slipped and did not see it fit and Presidential to correct himself, but kept quiet, then the man meant to lie in the face of Nana Addo’s exposure of his very reckless use of our resources, or he was not even sure of how much it cost the nation to train the doctors.
More so when a memo signed by his then sector Minister of Health, Joseph Yieleh Chireh had received his cabinet level attention.
The memo, prepared before the recent massive fall in the cedi against major foreign currencies, states: “the budget for the basic training of doctors and of specialists works out to GH¢74,344,960 for the period of the Medical Cooperation” with “an amount of GH¢14,498,960” needed for the first year, 2012.
According to the Minister of Health, the cost of training each one of our Senior High School graduates sent to medical schools in Cuba amounts to GH¢50,660.12 (¢506.6 million) a year. This means that at the end of the six years, we would have spent US$151,980 or GH¢303,960 (¢3.0396 billion) on each of those students.
Thirdly, if Nana Akufo Addo even was wrong with his figures, which even turned out to be right and lower than that given finally by the Mahama camp, should he, the man whose pet initiative it is and who is the president, also get it wrong?. Should Ghana be training doctors who could be trained in this country and better, in Cuba if it costs us more?.
The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) says, it can train a fully qualified doctor for all the six (6) years at a total cost of 30,000 dollars, yet our President John Mahama and his NDC government have opted to train that same doctor at the cost of 180,000 dollars for the same period or 30,000 dollars PER year, causing a financial loss of 150,000 dollars to Ghana on each trained Cuban doctor.
Better still, the GMA is saying, given the total amount that is being spent to train 250 doctors in Cuba, they can train one thousand, five hundred (1,500) better doctors for Ghana in the next six years.
The extent of this gargantuan financial loss being engineered by the NDC as booty, is seen when one multiplies the 250 students sent out by 150,000 dollars which is the excess funds on each student on this initiative alone, to be pocketed by Mahama and his cronies.
The cost or what the nation loses in this fraudulent and financial loss causing President Mahama negotiated deals can be seen below;
Government’s policy of eradicating schools under trees across the country was on Wednesday boosted by the Architectural and Engineering Services Limited (AESL) and Pozzolana Ghana Limited (PGL) who joined forces to help achieve the objective.
A copy of the MOU obtained by the Ghana News Agency stated that, PGL will supply AESL about 150,000 bags of pozzolana cement for the building of 250 schools nationwide.
If, as above, 150,000 bags of pozzolana cement can build 250 schools nationwide as estimated by AESL, then, if one such bag of cement even cost a hundred dollars ($100), Ghana would have benefitted from over 570 AESL standard schools from the excess savings that would have been made on training these doctors here in the country, to serve any Free Compulsory Education Policy.
Therefore, it is very true that corruption alone, if dealt with as shown in this Cuban deal, not to mention the Embryer, STX, Judgement debts etc, can give the nation the much needed funds for development, which doesn’t seem to be a priority of the NDC government of John Mahama.
In the light of such huge losses to the state and educational sector therefore, eradicating 1,775 schools under trees in 4 years is no achievement.
Under President Kufuor, among other developments $40 million was used to establish the GRIDCO in 2007, and 10 million Euros used to connect 79 communities to the electricity. These are all strategic developmental investment that could be undertaken in these times of dum sor dum sor energy crisis with these state resources, that the NDC party cronies are pocketing in the name of training Ghanaian doctors in Cuba.
Let Ghanaians rise up and vote against these corrupt deals by the NDC represented in President Mahama; Isofoton, Rockshell, STX, Woyome, Embraer 190, etc that even John Maham’s former boss, HE Atta Mills realising bad negotiations, caused an investigation into, clearly, a rejection of Mahama’s recklessness with state resources.
Vote Nana Akufo Addo, the bold, focused and ever visionary leader of the NPP, to lead Ghana into her glory through prudent, incorruptible and skilful management of Ghana.
Join the victory party by voting massively for NANA AKUFO ADDO.