Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia has said he has not run away from the economy as his critics claim.
Instead, he said his focus on digitalisation is part of the measures being put in place to build a stronger and more efficient economy.
Addressing some student participants and an agriculture boot camp at the Jubilee House on Monday, 28 March 2022, Dr Bawumia said: “We’ve been doing things for so many years and that transformation wasn’t coming. And, so, coming into government and heading the Economic Management Team, the President gave me that mandate and gave me that opportunity to focus on how best we can transform and modernise Ghana to make sure that some of the challenges, some of the risks that; you know, people just want to operate in our economy are facing, how we mitigate those risks, how we make this economy an efficient economy and this is why I have focused on digitalisation”.
“Sometimes, people say, ‘Well, we thought you were an economist but you’re doing so much in IT space; have you left economics behind?’ No, no; not at all”.
“In fact, it is because of the economy that I’m focusing on digitisation because without building those pillars, our economy will just not be able to stand on its own feet”, he noted.
“We need to build those pillars to allow all our sectors in the economy to be able to compete and, so, we decided to address some of the major bottlenecks that businesses face, you in the agric sector face, through digitalisation.”
“First of all, whatever problems exist and make this economy inefficient affect everybody – whether you are in agric or industry or service, you’ll face those problems. If you don’t know who you are dealing with, if identity, just establishing your identity is a problem and you go to Dr Kofi Mensah of Agric Development Bank and you say to Dr Kofi Mensah, ‘I want to borrow money for my business’, now they need to establish your identity first of all and if that is not clear, if there is any doubt about what your identity is, there may be even doubts about your age and all of that, you are not likely to get that loan”, the Vice-President said.
“If you don’t have a track record that goes with your identity, you have a problem and we had a situation in Ghana where for 60 years, we have a 30 million population but we don’t have unique identity numbers and this is why we introduced and sort of went ahead to implement because in 2008, the National Identification Card project was introduced but when we came into office in 2017, we thought that was the key pillar digitisation of this economy”, he explained.