President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo said only a bold national agenda, including dramatic mobilization of local resources, will ensure accelerated national development.
He said that with the COVID-19 pandemic disrupting global financing mechanisms and opening up a huge funding gap for all countries, Ghanaians must accept that “development can best take place in the vast increase in mobilization. revenues”.
Speaking at a parade of students, security services and identifiable groups to mark the 65th anniversary of Ghana’s independence, in Cape Coast, the central regional capital, President Akufo-Addo stressed that the effects of the pandemic had highlighted the urgent need for an intense increase in domestic resource mobilization to reduce dependence on foreign savings.
“Today, there is no doubt that the most important thing in people’s minds is the need for accelerated national development to improve living standards and create jobs for the mass of the population, especially young people.
“However, not everyone is ready to take the next step towards recognizing that accelerated national development can best take place in dramatically increasing revenue mobilization…And very few will then take the extra step to accept that revenue mobilization happens primarily through taxation,” he said.
Noting that Ghana’s tax to GDP ratio of 12.2% pales in comparison to its counterparts around the world, the President said it was not acceptable that only 2.4 million of the Ghanaian population were supporting the entire tax burden of more than 30 million others.
He said Asian countries that are doing well are financing their rapid development from their own economies and “we need to do the same and change our fiscal profile.”
“We need to move Ghana to a place beyond aid…that is, a Ghana that no longer depends on the benevolence of foreign charities and donors for the management of public funds. .. It is doable, we want to transform Ghana into a world class economy. hub, which will benefit every Ghanaian,” he stressed.
This year’s celebration is under the new theme: “Working Together, Rebounding Together”, which is a clear call for Ghanaians to pitch in as the country strives for success.
President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that the theme of the celebrations imposed on all Ghanaians the duty to embrace the essence of patriotism.
“We must not denigrate our nation just because we can, all to achieve narrow, partisan interest.
“We are bound to have differences of opinion about the way forward in our nation, but we must recognize that the expression of these diverse opinions must not undermine the fundamental unity we must forge to move the course forward. of our nation,” he said.