President Akufo Addo Shuns Ghana’s Tourism for UK’s

Story by Assay Nkrumah

As President Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo leaves Ghana for the United Kingdom on a one week vacation, Ghanaians are interrogating the motivation behind his desire to choose UK over Ghana to rest. Media practitioners and the general public are questioning why the president couldn’t have a meaningful rest in any part of Ghana, but selected to travel to London with his family and grandchildren? A statement issued today, 10th May 2018 from the presidency said the leader of Ghana left our beloved country on the 9th May 2018 for his first official vacation since taking office.

On the other hand, Tourist operators are of the view that, the president could have used his first official vacation to cool off in any part of Ghana to boost the local economy. The government mantra of “Ghana Beyond Aid” could only be achievable if the politicians, particularly those in the ruling party are schooled on pursing fiscal discipline and spending more in Ghana. The cost benefit of president Nana Addo taking his one week vacation could be high. Whiles, some sections of the society believe that the approach taken by the president is an affront to local tourism, opinions continue to divide on this matter. A business man who doubles as a policy analyst opines that the president has missed a huge opportunity in instilling confidence in the average Ghanaian to patronise Ghana’s struggling tourism industry in real terms.

Ghana Beyond Aid is achievable, however, it will require an acquiesced efforts of all Ghanaians, particularly, those in public office to make it happen. This is probably the first time in Ghana that, a sitting president has taken leave with his entire family to travel abroad. The cost of his trip will indeed become a matter of public scrutiny in the coming weeks. To achieve real dividend from the rhetorics of “Ghana Beyond Aid”, the government must have a clear fiscal discipline policy in place.  Undeniably, the decision of the president to visit London for his official holidays could be concluded as a profound disbelieve in boosting the local tourism sector. It will be recalled that, past leaders such as former president Jerry John Rawlings used to take holidays in Akuse during his time in office. Today, one can understand why Akuse is a much sort after location in Ghana.

The general public would like to know why the presidency issued the statement a day after the president had left the country.

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