Nana Addo’s Speech at IEA: An Analysis

Nana Addo’s memorable speech at the Institute of Economic Affairs Evening Encounter was both a Stump Speech and an Issue Speech.
A stump speech in the sense that it enhanced his credibility when he said,
” My life has been about service to people. This has been my driving force as a lawyer, as a political activist against military rule, as a campaigner for human rights and democracy, as a Member of Parliament, as Attorney General and as Minister for Foreign Affairs.

In between these endeavors, I have also been in business and done reasonably well.”

The speech was also an issue speech because it defined his position on issues such as good leadership, good healthcare, education, agriculture, and job creation.

Let’s analyze how he was able to accomplish this task.

a. Attention Getter: The mention of late President Atta Mills’ passing into eternity
drew everyone’s attention and those who were hoping he would hit the late President negatively were disappointed when he added, ” May he rest in perfect peace.”

The late President was his political opponent and not his enemy.

b. Target Audience: When Nana Addo mentioned peace and stability, his target audience was NPP and ” all other stakeholders, especially the Electoral Commission, the ruling party and the security agencies.”

Ghana’s peace and stability is worth safeguarding, and is also our collective responsibility.

c. The Problem at Stake: He said he is “convinced that we have to change the way we do things and transform our economy into a new one ? a new economy that will help us give our children good education, create jobs, provide good healthcare, feed ourselves adequately, and give every Ghanaian an opportunity for a good life.”

d. His Big Idea: Nana Addo said his goal is to provide transformational leadership and help build a prosperous society.
The man’s leadership qualities has never been in doubt.

e. Facts to Support Suggested Solution: Ghana needs effective leadership, he said.
The unprecedented, gargantuan, and rapacious corruption in these last few years; lack of accountability and transparency; the collapsing National Health Insurance Scheme; and the misplacement of our priorities in creating social mobility were among some of the facts requiring urgent solutions.

f. Adequate Research: Nana Akufo-Addo quoted both Ghana’s GDP figures and UNESCO figures to buttress his point of providing free secondary education to
school children.
According to him, we do not need to reinvent the wheel. Post-War Japan, Malaysia, Kenya, South Africa, and Lesotho have all done well in allocating certain percentages of their GDP to education.

g. The Solution to the Education Problem: ” We know how to fund it. A percentage of the oil revenues allocated to the Ghana National Petroleum Company, and for the funding of the budget, as well as a greater percentage from GETFund, will be used to finance the programme. ”

What more could we ask for.

h. On Agriculture: “We have to modernize our agriculture and process our agricultural products.
We allow our fruits to rot and import fruit juice. ”

How sad!!!

i. On Industrialization: ” We will borrow from the experiences of countries that have industrialized with the skills of artisans. ”
” We shall formalize collaboration between government, and the private sector,?”

How is Nana Addo going to accomplish this great vision? This is how he put it:

” I have a team, a dynamic and competent team, to implement plans designed to transform the lives of our people and develop in Ghana, a free, democratic, modern African state ? one that can hold its own in a competitive world.

I am privileged to have a deep pool of talent of men and women in the NPP to draw from, as well as from the broad spectrum of Ghanaian talent, home and abroad, to turn the dreams of freedom and prosperity of our forefathers into reality.”

One of the definitions of communication is ” the transmission of meaning from one person to
another or to many people whether verbally or nonverbally.”
(Barrett, Deborah J. Leadership Communication. McGraw-Hill. 2011 Page 5.)

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo communicated his vision for Ghana with ease.
The applause and eventual response will certainly translate into votes come December, 2012, and Nana Addo will be sworn in as the President of the Republic of Ghana in January 2013.

Dr. Kwadwo Adom Tufuor is a Communications Consultant, and a Member of the US National
Communication Association Honor Society.
He is the Author of “Campaign and Win?.One Touch”, a Campaigns and Elections Handbook.

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