Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Senior Minister, has said the Ghana Beyond Aid Agenda is a national call and must not be viewed as political programme.
The vision, according to the minister, though initiated by the government should collectively be owned by Ghanaians so that successive governments would remain committed to it.
“As a country, we are looking forward to become a prosperous and self-reliant nation by better managing our resources, instead of having a mentality to depend on aid and benevolence of others,” he said.
In a speech read on his behalf at the press launch of the 71st Annual New Year School and Conference in Accra, Mr Osafo-Maafo called for an attitudinal change to achieve the target.
The three-day event, scheduled for January 14-16,2020 aims to bring together people from all walks of life to deliberate on topical issues of national and international interest will be held on the theme “Ghana Beyond Aid, challenges and prospects”.
Mr Osafo-Maafo explained that Ghana needed to build a national consensus on the national development by resorting to concrete, unbiased and patriotic and honest discussion on the way forward in getting weaned over dependence on foreign aid to pursue it development agenda.
He noted that Ghana had no business being where it was and should be providing aid to other developing countries, and that the judicious use of the resources available was essential, adding that Ghanaians should accelerate own development, desist from importation as well as add value to the raw materials available.
The Senior Minister said there was the need for a renewed mindset and resolves to break the cycle of dependency, especially, through modernisation of agriculture and accelerated industrialisation.
Prof. Michael Tagoe, acting Provost, College of Education, in his opening remarks said Ghana’s economic trajectory was interesting, adding that at independence there was hope among the populace that Ghana was soon going to experience an economic miracle.
He said the country had continually relied on external aid to support the economy and other relevant sectors such as education, health and agriculture with many natural resources at its disposal.
“It is therefore heart-warming that there is the desire from the present government to lead the agenda of Ghana Beyond Aid,” he added.
Giving a background of the conference, the acting Dean of the School of Continuing Distance Education, Prof. Olivia Kwapong, said the conference for the past years had been bringing people from all walks from life to deliberate on topical issues of national and international interest.
BY BENEDICTA GYIMAAH FOLLEY