President Mahama delivering State of the Nation address
President Mahama delivering State of the Nation address

Dr Eric Oduro Osae, the proponent, was commenting on President John Mahama’s State of the Nation Address on Uniiq FM Current Affair’s programme, ‘Behind The News’ last Thursday. Dr Oduro Osae observed that the President’s address did not meet the requirements of the State of the Nation Address and that the aberration could be attributed to the way the message was packaged.

President Mahama delivering State of the Nation address
President Mahama delivering State of the Nation address

“I believe somewhere in his address, the State of the Nation could be found, but the way he packaged and delivered it missed the point; he did not satisfy the parameters of such an address. Parliament should pass a legislative instrument that will specify at least some minimum content as to what must go into a State of the Nation Address,” he explicated.

In his view, the State of the Nation Address should be a status report of the country and where the prevailing conditions as they exist will lead the nation to.

“The President focused on what he has done and what he intends to do, but not a status report, which must give us the status quo and where it is leading the nation to,” Dr Oduro Osae expatiated.
He said past presidents have equally adopted their own template and therefore there was no consistency which would guide the citizenry on the criteria for the State of the Nation Address.

From Dr Oduro Osae’s standpoint, a status quo report of the nation should not gloss over burning issues such as the Guantamo Detainees in Ghana, the International Monetary Fund bailout programme for country, the Long- term National Development Plan and the Fulani Herdsmen situation in the country.
President Mahama was in Parliament on Thursday in fulfilment of article 67 which imposes an obligation on him to deliver a Message on the State of the Nation at the beginning each session of Parliament. Article 67 provides, “The President shall, at the beginning of each session of Parliament and
before a dissolution of Parliament, deliver to Parliament a message on the
state of the nation.”

It must be emphasised that by article 67, President Mahama has one more Message on the State of the Nation to deliver to Parliament before the House dissolves on January 6, 2017.

Meanwhile, President of policy think tank, IMANI Ghana, Franklin Cudjoe, has endorsed the new approach President John Infrastructural Development

According to the President, health care has improved tremendously; with his government making lots of investment in the sector to ensure a better system.

He said guided by the social democratic philosophy of the NDC, the Government believes that a healthy people make a wealthy nation, which is the reason why an investment of more than $2 billion in health infrastructure, equipment and human resources.

“We project the completion of the project to add more than 6000 new hospital beds to Ghana’s existing stock by the end of 2018, ” said the President.

Giving updates on ongoing health project the President said, “There are three teaching hospitals, three institutional hospitals, four regional hospitals, 14 district hospitals, dozens or Poly Clinics and health centers as well as thousands of CHIP compounds”,

Many other projects are at the various stages of completion: construction of the University hospital at Legon, upgrading and rehabilitation of the ridge hospital, expansion of the second phase of the Tamale Hospital, expansion of the Police Hospital in Accra are progressing steadily, the President revealed.
The Wa Regional Hospital which is part of the eight hospital projects started in 2012 is 70 per cent completed.

Also, a 220 bed regional hospital in Kumawu, 60 bed district hospital in Salaga, 60 bed district in tepa, Nsorko, Konongo Odumase, 100 municipal hospital near Atomic in Accra have also been completed.
Rehabilitation works on the 296 bed Bolgatanga hospital is progressing, the new modern emergency department for Korle-bu hospital 90 is complete and a 12 bed Intensive Care Unit Department of Surgery has also been refurbished and complete.

Six district hospitals with integrated IT systems are currently being designed and constructed and equipped at an estimated cost of $75m to benefit Sekondi Takoradi, Abetifi, Garu, Kumawu, Fomena and Dodowa,

The President said that he has directed the Minister to convert the Regional Hospital in Volta region into a modern teaching hospital befitting of a status of a university hospital for the use of University of Health and Allied Sciences.

Source: Public Agenda

By Ebenezer T. Hanson

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