Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you for accepting my invitation to attend this important event in the political history of our dear country, Ghana. The situation is alarming. Change for the NEW GHANA is no longer an option. It is a necessity!
So after months of soul searching, fasting, prayers and consultations about the future of our country and the necessity for the NEW GHANA, I have decided to announce that I will contest to become the President of the Republic of Ghana in the 2020 general elections on the ticket of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP). I filed my nomination a wile ago.
As a believer, I base my decision on authority of the word of God, in Zechariah 4:6: “Then he answered and spake unto me, … saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts”. You will win and bring the development and progress Ghanaians have hoped for since our independence from the colonial powers in 1957! Your dream of the NEW GHANA is in your hands. (Not By Might… Chorus).
Let me continue by paying homage to my elders, who envisioned and birthed the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) and have nurtured it as the third force in Ghana’s political space, and as the only capable alternative to the NDC and NPP duopoly, who represent the mountains that must be removed for the NEW GHANA to be established!
I pay tribute to the Founding father Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom and his spouse Mrs. Nduom; Mr. Mike Eaghan Snr., Chairman Ladi Nylander, Chairman Nii Allotey Brew-Hammond, Mrs. Mary Ankomah Boakye Boateng, Madam Eva Lokko of blessed memory, who have graciously mentored me in the art and science of leadership for nation building ahead of this great generational assignment.
Our newly elected executives from the national, regional, constituency to the polling stations; our entire membership and support base, I thank and acknowledge your dedication and sacrifices to take the PPP from third force to first. But for COVID-19, you would have been here in your numbers. I am nevertheless grateful that you are with the few of us, gathered here in spirit and in your millions out there, participating and observing this historic event online.
Ladies and Gentlemen:
With this announcement you can expect many to ask. Can this PPP man win the 2020 election and become the President of the Republic of Ghana? Yes I can! Can the voters make me the President knowing that we do not have even one seat in Parliament now? Yes they can, if they want to. Why? because in Ghana, we run an executive system of government where one person is given the authority to form a government using the best men and women he or she can find inside and outside parliament.
We do not run a parliamentary system where a party needs a majority in the Legislature to form government. What our experience in the 4th Republic has taught us is that we need a President who is best suited for the job with a great vision and capacity to make it a reality.
On that score, I believe I am the person most suited for the position of President of the Republic of Ghana come January 2021. There are many good reasons why Ghanaians should support me in 2020 to make the NEW GHANA a reality. We need the New Ghana, for a clean and surgical break from the past and the current toxic politics of the duopoly that has dominated and retarded our development and progress, since the establishment of the 4th Republican Dispensation in 1992/93.
I have come to this point not only by faith but with a lot of work as the good Lord has given me strength. As some of you are aware, my exploratory work into leadership and nation building started way back in 2007, while working with the National African Peer Review Governing Council (NAPRM-GC) as Head of Communications, evangelising Good and Accountable Governance from the national to local government levels; where I first received the clarion call for change in our governance system.
Indeed there is evidence all around that majority of Ghanaians more than ever before are tired and fed up with the bad governance of the duopoly, ranging from election violence, to corruption and bad economic management, aptly described by a judge of the superior court of Ghana at a commission of inquiry as “create loot and share”, while majority of our people wallow in poverty, destitution and neglect.
My announcement today is in response to the call and the continuation of the journey we started in 2008. This journey must end in the Flagstaff House, where we shall execute our agenda to make Ghana a JUST, DISCIPLINED AND HIGH INCOME COUNTRY. The NEW GHANA is possible!
Ladies and Gentlemen:
Before 2012, there was nothing like the Progressive People’s Party (PPP). When we came on the scene, many predicted we would fade away like the numerous new parties that had come and gone. But we beat everyone else apart from the duopoly, to take the enviable position of third force in the 2012 and 2016 general elections, from where we are determined to leap frog to first.
To that end, I am inviting each and every one of us in the PPP and the progressive movement of Ghana as a whole, to come together and step into the big shoes of our beloved Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, to show strength not only at the Presidential level but also at the Parliamentary level in constituencies all over the country, towards the progressive movement, from third force to first in Ghana politics.
As I speak, our strong parliamentary candidates have already begun to prepare themselves for victory in all 16 regions and 275 constituencies. The incumbent MPs who have failed their constituents know who they are, and should be preparing to hand over to PPP MPs, just as the President must prepare to hand over to William Dowokpor on January 7, 2021.
Ladies and Gentlemen:
Who is William Dowokpor? I am an ordinary Ghanaian boy born in Accra New-Town, precisely at the Dr. Nkansa Djan’s Maternity Home on the 6th of March 1971, to ordinary Ghanaian parents now on retirement.
Through hard work and dedication to service, formal education, apprenticeship to great and capable nation builders, and above all, the infinite Great Grace and Favour of God who has called me, I stand in front of you to speak about seeking the mandate of the people to become President of the Republic of Ghana to help us build the New Ghana we all want.
I live by family values and I am married with three young children that I would love to live in the New Ghana I want to help us build together. I am a Christian, a Fundamental Baptist who has accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and is not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ; while tolerant and accommodating of the beliefs of others.
My political ideology is pragmatism, humanism and common sense, informed by the need for consensus building, inclusiveness and using the best people in the country to accelerate our development and make our people collectively prosperous. I believe in working with a sense of urgency to solve the problems we have today, and not leave them for tomorrow. I also believe that a lot can be done for our country, if we all share and work towards attainment of the NEW GHANA vision of a just and disciplined high income country within one generation.
Ladies and Gentlemen:
For close to 30 years, long enough to transform any resourceful nation from developing to developed, third world to first or poor to rich, like South Korea, which attained independence about the same time as Ghana, and with similar economic indicators has done, we have missed the economic transformation component of our democracy because the basic law that governs it, the 1992 constitution is just not fit for purpose.
As the star of Africa, first nation state south of the Sahara to attain independence and mentoring others to achieve same, the African continent still looks up to us and it is time for a new generation of leaders to rise again to lift us up to the New Ghana where we belong, and the AFRICA WE WANT!
Unfortunately, it appears our leaders in the 4th Republican dispensation are stuck in the 20th century ways of doing things, seeking non-existent solutions for 21st century problems. It does not work like that. And that explains why Ghana, the star of Africa, sadly, remains underdeveloped.
Thankfully, the PPP and I have the 21st century solutions for our 21st century problems. And for us to experience the New Ghana in our life time, we must not only replace the current President and prevent the former President from coming back into power; we must in addition, undertake sweeping reforms to pave way for good and accountable governance in the NEW GHANA.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
There are ten policy visions that I would execute with a sense of urgency for the New Ghanaian and the NEW GHANA we need, beginning January 2021.
1. Is to create a just and disciplined society. In the New Ghana, we shall create a just and disciplined society with a passion for excellence, within ten years and with science and technology as the cornerstone, become a high income country within one generation.
2. I shall work to improve the performance of Government. Restore credibility and competence in state institutions; make government efficient and raise the needed revenue to be able to pay public servants well to motivate them to facilitate the work of the private sector and Ghanaian society in general. In my administration the capable public sector would be the engine of growth that drives every other sector to success.
3. Give Power to the People for Development. I shall sponsor amendment of the Constitution to enable the election of all District Assembly Members as well as the Metropolitan Municipal and District Chief Executives to ensure local accountability and rapid development. This I shall do in one term of office.
4. Strengthen Parliament to perform its legislative duties effectively. Again, I shall sponsor amendment of the Constitution to abolish the provision that allows Ministers of State to also serve as Members of Parliament. I believe that this move will make available for governance a large pool of qualified, experienced Ghanaian talent whose expertise is currently unused and therefore lost to Ghana. This, I shall aim to complete in one term of office.
Concurrent with this objective will be a solid determination to give Parliament the facilities and resources needed to pass good laws and scrutinize the proposals submitted by the Executive effectively. In the NEW GHANA, what you observed in Parliament last Friday shall never happen! Collateralising our gold reserves for USD 500 million because the incumbent wants cash to spend and win the 2020 election, flies in the face of good economic management and good accountable governance.
The Agya Pa agreement shall be revoked in my administration for lack of transparency in the national interest and possible fraud! How can we forget about PDS so soon and create another one for looting and sharing?
5. Provide Quality Education for Every Ghanaian Child. My administration shall standardise school facilities from kindergarten to Senior High School with libraries, toilets, classrooms, kitchen, housing for teachers, playground, etc: and Ensure Free, Compulsory Continuous Education in public schools from kindergarten to Senior High School (including computer training). An integral part of this objective is to significantly increase vocational training so that all school leavers can gain employable skills. The compulsory part will be enforced by the Education Police we shall establish.
6. Energy for Industrialisation and Rapid Development. My administration shall execute solutions with a sense of urgency to meet the energy needs of industry and domestic use and make Ghana a net exporter of power again in four years. To achieve this objective, we will provide tax incentives to enable development of alternative sources of fuel and power – such as bio fuels and solar. We aim to ensure that the contribution from alternative sources of energy reaches a minimum of 10% of what we need in a decade.
7. Better Health Care and a Cleaner Environment. My administration shall guarantee a cleaner environment free from preventable diseases like malaria, cholera and guinea worm. We shall provide affordable and accessible health care for all in every corner of the NEW GHANA and ensure emergency care throughout the country to save lives. Our focus will be in the area of prevention where education is the key. The current hand washing culture shall be strengthened COVID or no COVID-19.
8. In NEW GHANA, we shall collectively attack crime, the drug trade, political violence, negative political vigilantism and corruption aggressively, while showing leadership by example, being modest in government, enforcing the Right to Information Law and ensuring an Independent Prosecutor’s office exists and is separate from the Ministry of Justice.
We shall strengthen the Narcotics Control Board to make it the agency responsible for fighting the drug trade with all the human, financial and other resources needed for success. The Police Service shall no longer be under the control of the any politician. Tenure of office of the IGP shall be guaranteed for a fixed term and he or she shall no longer be appointed by the President. The service shall be provided with the resources, training and motivation needed to fight crime without fear or favour.
9. Our brothers and sisters in the diaspora, contribute a great deal to our economy in terms of remittances. But I know they can and are willing to do more with their knowledge, skills and experience. To that end, my administration shall create a Homecoming Secretariat to cater for the needs of Ghanaians abroad and the African Diaspora by June 30th 2021. The Secretariat shall provide the support system to encourage re-entry, investment, safe and healthy vacations and transfer of knowledge and technology for the speedy attainment of NEW GHANA.
10. Jobs! Sustainable jobs would be key to creating and sustaining the NEW GHANA. My administration shall use the state’s purchasing power to ensure that we eat what we grow and use what we produce in Ghana. That ladies and gentlemen, is the first step to sustainable job creation.
Ghana’s business climate shall be improved with the NEW GHANA Public Service reformed to facilitate both public and private sector job creation so that our people will stay at home to help develop the country and its economy. We will be relentless in providing support to Ghanaian industry and our farmers and fishermen using low interest loans, technical assistance, tax incentives and priority access to the Ghanaian market.
To accelerate job creation nationally, an inter-region highway will be built with the same high quality throughout the country to open it up for investment and development, as we take full advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTA) project whose secretariat we proudly host in our nation’s capital, Accra.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Should the people of Ghana vote for me to become President, I pledge to do what no President in the 4th Republic has been able to do. Apart from the prioritised constitutional reforms which we shall undertake with a sense of urgency, I shall complete all the projects initiated by my predecessors before starting new ones; utilize the good loans contracted by my predecessors and cancel the bad ones before considering new ones; and report to Parliament every year, progress towards implementing the Directive Principles of State Policy enshrined in Chapter Six of our Constitution.
In the normal times, when all we needed to do was to grow our economy at double digit for 10 consecutive years to have the chance to attain economic independence, successive administrations failed to meet the targets despite our bountiful natural resources.
Now that things have become more uncertain following the COVID-19 pandemic, many Ghanaians have doubts about our ability to catch up, post COVID-19, to attain the dream of a high income country. We must necessarily move away from winner-takes-all politics to an all inclusive government of the people for the people and by the people. I am for a government of national unity. And God willing, that is what I shall deliver when I become President
In my government, and in the NEW GHANA, you would find not more than 60 ministers of state, made up of the best people from PPP,CPP,PNC,NDC,NPP, Independents and Technocrats. Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the message of my campaign and the purpose of my Presidency. To succeed on this journey, I will need your prayers and support.
In conclusion, I wish to thank all media houses represented here and in particular those of you who have chosen to carry our message live, directly to Ghanaians throughout the country and abroad. We need you. Together, we will make democracy work for the benefit of our people. The NEW GHANA is possible!!!
Thank you for coming!
God bless you plenty!