The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says he recognizes fully that he needs the support of every Ghanaian, especially the support and prayers of the Church, to help him and his government carry out their mandate successfully.
According to President Akufo-Addo, he won the 2016 election because the Ghanaian people were dissatisfied with their living conditions and the direction in which the economy, and, indeed, the country was headed, adding that “they believed we, in the NPP, were different, and could put in place the requisite measures to improve their living conditions”.
It is for this reason, the President said, that “we have begun to work on the fundamentals of the economy, because we believe that an improved macro-economy is a fundamental requirement for stimulating the investments we need for the significant expansion and growth of the national economy, and the generation of wealth and jobs.”
This, President Akufo-Addo noted, has resulted in the growing stability of the macro-economy and the cedi, reduction in inflation and interest rates, and an abolition of nuisance taxes, whose aim is to shift the focus of the economy from an emphasis on taxation to an emphasis on production.
The President made this known on Saturday, 11th November, 2017, when he addressed the 75th anniversary celebration and 72nd graduation ceremony of the Trinity Theological Seminary.
Government, the President said, has begun the implementation of initiatives such as the Free SHS policy, the Programme for Planting for Food and Jobs, the 1-District-1-Factory Initiative, the National Entrepreneurship and Innovations Plan (NEIP), to help start-ups, and the difficult early stages of setting up businesses, the reintroduction of the Mass Cocoa Spraying Exercise, and re-afforestation programmes, amongst others.
“The Youth Employment Agency (YEA) is poised to employ some 60,000 youth. Extension officers, health professionals and teachers are now being employed, again, to provide much needed support for our agricultural, health and education sectors,” he added.
Churches must aid moral recovery & practice
With 71.2% of the population practicing Christianity, the President noted that Christian theological education is of no use, if it cannot be translated into a system of moral recovery and practice.
He entreated the Church “to speak out against the ills of our nation, and join Government’s fight against them – corruption, social and economic injustice, crime, the illegal mining menace, popularly referred to as galamsey, and the new phenomenon of vigilantism.”
Again, with the Church and education being linked, President Akufo-Addo noted that now more than ever, the traditions of discipline, hard work and integrity that characterise the churches that sponsor the Trinity Theological Seminary are needed in our country.
“That is why my government is keen on restoring more control back to the churches over the missionary schools. I am glad that many religious groups now seem to want to concentrate on the tertiary sector in the provision of education,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo, nonetheless, made a heartfelt appeal to the sponsoring churches of the Seminary to take a look back to the early childhood sector, as the churches used to be very active in this sector.
“There is an obvious, great need in this sector as we seem to be failing our young people. There is no gainsaying the fact that the most critical stages of education for any child are the early years. The words of Holy Scripture tell us, again, that ‘train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will never depart from it’”, he said.
The President continued, “Starting with our schools, we have to teach virtues, values and morals, and love for each other. If this is not done, we will be failing our young people. The churches have a proven track record in this sector, and I urge you to go back and help our nation. I daresay it would be useful for the growth of the churches as well.”
President Akufo-Addo urged the graduands to rise up to their religious responsibilities, and stimulate the desired motivational spirit of renewal and transformation towards effective nation-building.
“The growth of the Church should be measured not only in the number of its followers, but also in the quality of its members, who are dedicated to uphold the spiritual virtues of Jesus Christ. A Church, even with a limited number of congregations, can make a difference by breaking new grounds and bringing light where there is darkness,” he added.