A flagbearer hopeful of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr Afriyie Akoto, says he is the only candidate among the 10 vying for the flagbearer position of the NPP who has big plans for Ghana to make life comfortable for all.
According to him, his vision of using agriculture as the bedrock to develop other sectors of the economy as well as his ambitious project of establishing businesses for the NPP were so practical that when given the nod to implement them, Ghanaians would feel the change that they have been craving for so many years.
He said having toured the length and breadth of the country and experienced the low morale of the people as a result of the economic difficulties they were going through, he was more energised at this moment in his life to break the general principles of business and management and make life meaningful for all.
He said he would set up a chain of party-owned businesses at national, regional, and constituency levels to provide party delegates with jobs.
According to him, agriculture would be the foundation of his vision to create several viable businesses for the NPP when given the nod.
Speaking in an interview with the Ghanaian Times , Dr Akoto said his vision of establishing businesses for the NPP was not a new innovation as it would generate a lot of money and create jobs for the teeming unemployed party activists.
“The morale of the people is down. The revival of their morale is based on what I intend to do. I have big plans for Ghana that can generate income for the development of our great NPP to pay our activists handsomely to encourage them to work hard for this party,” he said.
He noted that the businesses will generate revenue to run the party as well as provide gainful employment opportunities for its members to alleviate their plight.
Citing the Kuomintang (KMT) or Nationalist Party of Taiwan, he said the KMT has vast business empire of banks, investment companies, petrochemical firms, and television and radio stations, hence the need for the NPP to emulate the KMT to ensure the growth of the party.
Commenting on his vision for the country, Dr Akoto said “this country is sitting on wealth. It hasn’t been exploited. My vision is to use agriculture to spearhead the breaking of poverty cycle in this country.”
He expressed worry over the use of pension funds and monies from the International Monetary Fund to finance the country’s development saying that “it won’t work; it has never worked, and it will never work. We have to get away from the cycle of borrowing money to fix our roads and finance our infrastructure.”
He stressed the need to leverage agriculture to shore up the country’s socioeconomic growth as the farmers of Ghana for the past six years have demonstrated clearly their capability to produce food for every Ghanaian.
“It was based on this vision that I led the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to establish the Tree Development Authority (TDA) to develop six tree crops that is rubber, oil palm, coconut, mango, cashew and Shea under one roof to the level of cocoa where production could generate between US$6billion to US$12billion for the country annually,” he said.
He urged the delegates to compare his vision to the other aspirants as he was confident he possessed the right solution to the NPP and Ghana’s problems.