Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has stated that Ghana still needs aid from international donors to support the economy to facilitate development at all levels.
The current government's decision to sign eight new Co-operation Agreements and Memoranda of Understanding with China in different sectors of their respective economies contradict the 'Ghana Beyond Aid' agenda, and has met stiff oppostion from some stakeholders and citizens.
Speaking to the media at the graduation of the first batch of students of the Kufuor Scholars programme , former President Kufuor insisted that Ghana’s current phase of development requires some form of financial support from international partners.
“It is a matter of phasing. We are in a phase of development. We just do not get up and say no aid. They have exploited us enough so we take to empower ourselves, to build ourselves through education and through attracting investment, creating employment, so it gets to a point where now when they come, they meet their equals. So we have to be careful to say that now where we are, we will not go and ask for aid. We will do it, but only as a stage to empower us.”
“We need to build our negotiating skills up so we get a fair share around the negotiating table because whether from the East or West, none of them come because they love us. They come for what they can get and we must also learn what we want from them and learn to negotiate and take it.”
He added that “even if there were no aid fatigue, and with the best will in the world and the most charitable governments in place in the so-called donor countries, there will never be enough aid to develop Ghana to the level we want. Aid was never meant to be what would bring us to the status of a developed nation.”
President Akufo-Addo made this known when he delivered his address at the 61st Independence Day Celebration, at the Black Star Square, on Tuesday, 6th March 2018.
President Akufo-Addo on Wednesday, June 13, 2018, inaugurated a 13-member committee to develop a Charter for the ‘Ghana beyond Aid’ vision of his administration.
The Committee had been given a deadline of September 2018 to present to Parliament, a roadmap for the achievement of the vision that seeks to harness and prudently manage the country’s vast natural resource to finance Ghana’s development agenda without recourse to foreign assistance.
The document is expected, after approval by the legislature, to become the policy document to guide the actions of government as well as those of the various stakeholders in the country.
The Committee, chaired by Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Marfo, includes Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, Labour and Employment Minister Ignatius Baffour Awuah, Planning Minister Prof. Djan Baffour and the Local Government Minister, Hajia Alima Mahama.
Others are Dr Anthony Yaw Baah and Mrs Philomena Sampson, both of the Trades Union Congress, Mr David Ofori Acheampong of the Ghana National Association of Teachers, and Messrs Kwaku Agyeman-Duah and Nana Osei Bonsu of the Private Enterprise Federation.