PRESIDENT JOHN Evans Atta Mills will appear before Parliament on February 17, 2011 to deliver the state of the nation address, according to a communication from the presidency to the House.
This is in accordance with Article 67 of the 1992 Constitution, which states that ‘The President shall, at the beginning of each session of Parliament and before a dissolution of Parliament, deliver to Parliament a message on the state of the nation.’
Although the content of the President’s message is not made public, it is expected that his address will dwell on the ‘Better Ghana Agenda’ of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Halfway into President Mills’ administration, not many people including NDC members are convinced that the ‘Better Ghana Agenda’ is right on course.
People of the three regions in northern Ghana and those in the savanna belt would be eagerly awaiting the message of the president regarding the Savanna Accelerated Development Authority (SADA), particularly when the Mills administration has failed to deliver on its manifesto promise.
The ruling NDC promised in its manifesto, to allocate 200 million dollars as seed money to SADA after which 100 million cedis would be released every year to the Authority for the development of northern Ghana.
However, two years after the pledge, government has released only 25 million cedis to SADA.
Generally, Ghanaians will critically discuss President Mills’s message to the nation as they look up to him to solve the myriad of problems confronting the nation.
Among the problems are the unbearable economic hardships faced by market women, party foot soldiers, trotro and taxi drivers and the general working population as a result of astronomical increases in petroleum prices by the NDC administration.
Notwithstanding the hike in petroleum products with its damning effect on the people, there are reported cases of shortages of kerosene for the rural poor and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for both domestic and industrial consumption.
Ghanaians would also examine the measures put in place by the President and his administration to curb the increasing rate of road accidents.