US Ambassador to Ghana, Robert P. Jackson has described President Akufo-Addo as a more ‘visionary’ leader compared to some others the country has had in recent times.
Speaking to Host Kwabena Kyenkyenhene Boateng on the ’21 Minutes with KKB’ show, Mr. Jackson indicated that the President’s focus on revamping the private sector for economic growth places him in a better positon than many of his predecessors with regards to the transformation of the economy and driving progress.
Though he acknowledged and duly lauded Ex-President John Mahama for his impressive efforts towards the expansion of infrastructure in the country during his tenure, he maintained that Akufo-Addo’s ‘private sector-led’ growth agenda is more likely to grow the economy and create better opportunities for Ghanaians compared to infrastructure investments.
“I don’t think it is about Akufo-Addo coming and having changed everything all of a sudden. I do think that he is more visionary than some recent Ghanaian leaders. I think Ex-President Mahama had a vision too so I want to give him credit where credit is due, his emphasis was on infrastructure which is very important, schools, clinics, hospitals, roads, President Mahama did a lot for this country.
He continued; “President Akufo-Addo’s focus on the private sector and making the private sector the engine of growth rather than government being the driving force is how I see the difference between the two of them. Both of them had visions for the country, I think President Akufo-Addo’s vision of private sector-led growth is likely to create more jobs and propel the economy forward faster than the infrastructure investments but the infrastructure investments were important.
He lauded government’s ‘industrialization’ plan through the introduction of policies including the 1-D-1-F. This plan according to him will to a large extent, resolve the country’s unemployment issues, keep the youth to work in the country and evade the subject of immigration where several Ghanaian citizens, particularly youth travel abroad to seek greener pastures.
“President Akufo-Addo’s vision of 1-D-1-F may not be realized in his first term or even his second if there is one but the idea is exactly what is needed to get beyond aid. That you have to industrialise; that you build your industrial base, that you create jobs so that people do not want to trek across the desert and be potentially enslaved in Libya or even if they make it to Libya and drown in the Mediterranean, we need to change the dialogue so that people do not see it as their only alternative, we need to make Ghana attractive for young people to stay here and see that they can be entrepreneurs, that they can have a real bright future here”.