Opinion: The President Goofed on Job Stats – By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

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Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jnr., Ph.D.
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His handlers and cabinet appointees continue to demonstrate the fact that they have absolutely no shortage when it comes to their ability to scandalously disappoint. Else, President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo would not have appeared before the media on his first anniversary in office without the availability of statistics indicating how many jobs had been created in both the public and private sectors of the economy over the past twelve months (See “I Don’t Know Statistics on Jobs Created – Akufo-Addo” Ultimatefmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 1/18/18). This reflects poorly on both the administrative competence of the President and his Labor and Employment Minister, and he had better act quickly if Nana Akufo-Addo wants to be taken seriously on the economy and the job-creation front.

It was also disheartening to hear Nana Akufo-Addo assert, rather lamely, that statistics on the number of jobs created during the last twelve months were still being collected. Actually, in an effectively functioning market-oriented economy like ours, best practice counsels the need for labor statistics to be generated by the Government at least quarterly or once every three months. One year and counting is simply too long and intolerable a wait. It also does not show the picture of a Government that is on top of things, especially when it comes to significantly improving the economy. It also means that the clearly snail-paced culture of our civil service bureaucracy has to be promptly and radically reformed. Four years to the next electoral mandate renewal – actually three years presently – is not that far off, and the operatives of the Akufo-Addo Administration may very well be in a rude shock of their lives to discover, at the end of their first term in office, that the bulk of their “phenomenal achievements” have not been effectively communicated to the Ghanaian voters.

This may be what he meant, when Prof. Kwame Karikari, the retired University of Ghana communications expert, meant when the founder of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) was widely reported to have bitterly lamented recently that President Akufo-Addo’s communications operatives and handlers were failing him big time. He had better wake up his Labor and Employment Minister who clearly seems to have gone into a deep slumber on the job. It is an open-secret that much of the vigilantism raging among such militant party wings as the Delta and Invincible forces is clearly the direct result of acute unemployment problems. Indeed, at the ruling party’s Delegates’ Congress in Kumasi, the Asante Regional Capital, recently, the President put his index-finger on the right button, as it were, when Nana Akufo-Addo promised to radically tackle the high spate of unemployment in the country in the coming year, to wit, 2018.

Now, of course, promises are one thing and being able to promptly and efficiently actualize them another altogether. In short, until he is able to release credible and reliable job-creation statistics, Nana Akufo-Addo had better stay off this crucial subject or he stands the risk of making himself and his Administration a laughing stock.

*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com  Ghanaffairs

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