Former President John Dramani Mahama has described President Akufo-Addo’s ‘Agenda 111’ project as an afterthought adding that there is no transparency as far as funding for the project is concerned.
On Tuesday, President Nana Akuf-Akufo Addo cut sod for the commencement of the ‘Agenda 111’ project at Trede in the Atwima Kwanwoma District of the Ashanti Region.
According to the president, about 25,000 people will also be provided with jobs during the construction of the hospitals. Each of the 111 hospitals will cost $16.88 million and will be completed in 18 months.
President Akufo-Addo added: “So far, sites have been identified for 88 of the 111 hospitals and after cutting the sod, work on the other 87 sites will also commence today…the acquisition of the remaining 13 sites will be completed shortly for work to begin”, he noted.
But speaking on Bolgatanga-based URA Radio, as part of his thank-you tour, the former President stated that Agenda 111 was hurriedly conjured after the NPP government realized that the several borrowing by the government had all gone into consumption and there were no projects to show for it.
Mr Mahama said “you are witnesses to what has happened: from GHS120 billion of total public debt, today, we are almost hitting GHS400 billion public debt and what most Ghanaians ask is: ‘What have we done with that money?’ It looks like most of them have gone into consumption rather than into providing the country with the kind of infrastructure that we need”.
“It’s only as an afterthought that suddenly they realised we must be doing some infrastructure, so, Agenda 111 has been drawn. There’s no transparency [about] how the money is going to be procured and all that”.
“Is it going to lead to more borrowing when we already have a high level of debt hanging around the country’s neck? So, these are things that we could build consensus around if they were prepared to open up and involve everybody in doing so but it doesn’t look like they are prepared to do so,” he added.
The hospital projects include 101 district hospitals, seven regional hospitals, and two specialized mental health hospitals across the country to be completed within 12 months of commencement of each facility.