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Otokunor combats ‘praise-singing’ colleagues, blasts Akufo-Addo over relief measures

NDC Deputy General Secretary, Peter Otokunor
NDC Deputy General Secretary, Peter Otokunor

President Akufo-Addo has received several accolades following his decision to among other things, let the government absorb the bills incurred by Ghanaians with regards to water for 3 months.

In an address on Sunday updating the citizenry on measures being undertaken in the face of new confirmed cases of the global pandemic, the coronavirus.

But reacting to the president’s decisions, Deputy General Secretary of the opposition NDC, Peter Otokunor has described the move as ‘timid and a choice of convenience rather than necessity’.

He criticized President Akufo-Addo for taking the easy road since “the data shows that only 18% of the entire Ghanaian population have access to potable drinking water out of which 8.5% are rural water supply systems.”

“Mr. President the second of the critical needs, is the provision of regular and affordable supply of electricity and/or fuel. Available evidence shows that over 85% of Ghanaian households have access to electricity and as you may already be aware, electricity has become an indispensable commodity in our livelihood, especially if you have to stay home. With all the financial challenges associated with this lockdown, one would have expected a truly workable and equitable social mitigation intervention that takes into prior consideration accessibility, availability and affordability of electricity.”
“While it is commendable to introduce a measure to absorb the water bills for all Ghanaians for the next three months, I believe that you would have served the large mass of people, better and more equitably if you had tackled electricity cost. It appears you chose a timid path and made a choice of convenience rather than necessity. Indeed, the data shows that only 18% of the entire Ghanaian population have access to potable drinking water out of which 8.5% are rural water supply systems. Rural water supply is ostensibly free sir,” portion of his statement copied to GhanaWeb read.

Mr Otokunor also noted as a measure and show of good faith and concern, it would have been a better approach to reduce fuel prices as a sure way to help alleviate the cost of managing public transport. He stressed that this would have provided a break-even for drivers who have been compelled to load passengers at half the capacity in compliance with the social distancing directive.

“This certainly would have made it possible for drivers to make ends meet to survive the lockdown,” He added.

“Don’t you think such a decision will also help to reduce the cost of running household generators as electricity continues to be unreliable and unstable even after your directives to the ECG against same? Well, it appears your directive itself may be unreliable and unstable, just as the electricity supply, because, just some few days ago, GRIDCO was in the news decrying the lack of sustained financing to fuel various dual power generation plants, even though crude oil prices are currently as low as $26.41 per barrel. This according to GRIDCO accounts for the intermittent power outages we are experiencing in several parts of the country.”

Read the full statement below

-GHANAWEB