Tue. Dec 5th, 2023

Akufo-Addo to service providers: Reduce your prices

Akufo-Addo to service providers: Reduce your prices

In order to reflect the strengthening cedi, President Akufo-Addo has ordered service providers in Ghana, including manufacturers, traders, and transport companies, to lower their pricing.

President Akufo-Addo claims that prices for goods and services did increase quickly when the cedi was depreciating at record rates. However, over the past few weeks, the cedi has appreciated at record rates as a result of government measures.

On Sunday, President Akufo-Addo addressed the Ga Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG) during their centennial celebration in Independence Square (Black Star Square) (18 December).

“The celebration’s theme—”grateful for our legacy, pushing ahead in unity and faith”—reminds me of the challenging circumstances in which Ghana finds itself as well as the importance of maintaining our Christian faith and never losing hope in the strength and grace of Almighty God.

The president of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, remarked, “You will concur with me that the last three years, 2020, 2021 and 2022, have proven to be very hard years for Ghana, as they have been for nearly all countries.”

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Keeping hope alive

President Akufo-Addo made the following statement prior to calling service providers: “For the avoidance of doubt, let us recall that every country on earth is experiencing difficult times. Indeed, we are currently dealing with skyrocketing freight costs, exorbitant fuel prices, exorbitant food prices, and sharp inflation increases.

According to the President, “in the last few days of November, the cedi depreciation reached record lows and the verdict was out on my government.” Some people had doubts about my government’s and my own ability to get our country back on the path of progress and prosperity and tackle our current problems at the height of our difficulties.

“In those trying times, my fellow Ghanaians and brothers and sisters in this congregation, I could only recall the words of St. Matthew 19:26, which states, “But Jesus looked at them and said to them, With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

“Things are starting to turn around thanks to appropriate policies, our tenacity, and hard effort. President Akufo-Addo stated that what appeared unattainable yesterday is now becoming possible.

Although the cedi is currently fast appreciating against the US dollar and all other major currencies, making up for its losses, and the cost of petroleum items are declining at the pump, he continued, “We are absolutely not out of the woods just yet.

Deliberate policies

President Akufo-Addo emphasized the “strengthening of the cedi,” saying that it “has not happened by happenstance but through the implementation of purposeful measures by government in partnership with the Bank of Ghana.”

According to the President, these deliberate government policies “include cedi liquidity tightening measures that result in the off-loading of forex as a store of value by speculators, the improvement of forex inflows from remittances and the mining sector, and the reaching of the Staff Level Agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for the three billion United States dollar package.”

“All of these factors worked together to improve the cedi’s position, and I can guarantee you that the government will keep working hard to protect and preserve the achievements earned.

In fact, Akufo-Addo said, “Ghana will continue in the weeks ahead with the purchases of foreign exchange from the mining and oil sectors to enhance liquidity supply to the market, with the single unified forex forward auction and some modest targeted bilateral support to critical imports, as well as the implementation of the gold for oil swap transaction which will significantly remove foreign exchange pressures on the cedi.

Direct appeal

In order to achieve this, President Akufo-Addo stated, “it is in view of this that I add my voice to those of GUTA, GRTCC and others, to appeal to manufactures, traders, and transport operators, who at the height of the cedi’s recent depreciation, increased prices of goods and services, to reduce their prices now that the cedi is regaining much of its strength.

President Akufo-Addo stated, “I believe this is not only a fair request, but also a just request, and I ask all of you to join me in this clarion cry so at the very least, we may have a more enjoyable Christmas.”

Further relief

The President assured the congregation, and by extension, Ghanaians, in his address that his “government is determined to bring even further relief” to the populace and “return the economy to the high rates of growth that characterized” the country’s “development in the three years preceding the COVID outbreak in 2020,” which made the economy “one of the fastest growing in the world.”

“We can only accomplish this if we move forward in unison, with trust, and with the conviction that, by the Grace of Almighty God, Ghana’s fortunes under Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, will be restored. I will thus appeal to you to bear with government in this difficult period as we work to chat a path out of the storm” Akufo- Addo stated.

“I know times are hard, which is affecting all of us, but this government will not shirk its responsibility to the people of Ghana to make the hard decisions which hard times demand which may be painful just like injections, but we have to take them if we are to be well again and get our economy back in a good place. The policies and programmes we are implementing, are meant to address the challenges and I am sure they will” he added.

National Cathedral

Thanking the Presbyterian Church of Ghana for the support it continues to give for the construction of the National Cathedral, President Akufo-Addo stated that, upon completion, the National Cathedral will serve not only as the country’s collective thanksgiving “to the Almighty for the blessings He has bestowed on our nation, sparing us the ravages of civil war that have bedevilled the histories of virtually all our neighbours, and the outbreak of deadly mass epidemics, but also as a rallying point for the entire Christian community of Ghana, which represents seventy plus percent (70+%) of the population.”

The President, therefore, asked the Ga Presbytery, and, indeed, all Christians, to continue to pray for Ghana’s peace and unity, so the nation can move forward in unity.

“I need the support of every Ghanaian, together with the prayers of the Church, to help me and my government carry out our mandate successfully.

“Pray for me so that Almighty God will continue to give me wisdom, strength, courage and compassion to enable me execute my duties as a good leader.

“With Him, all things are possible, as the Battle is the Lord’s!! For this too shall pass!!”, President Akufo-Addo said.

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