Former President John Dramani Mahama has disclosed that he made a mistake buying tractors for farmers during his tenure as President.
He revealed that given the chance again, he will rather buy the tractors and entrust them into the hands of experts to manage and provide the tractor services to farmers. This, he indicated, will ensure that a person with the know-how will maintain tractors long-term.
“I realized that some of the things that we ourselves did, [we] made mistakes with [them]. We imported tractors and agricultural equipment; we gave them to farmers. The farmer does not need the tractor, he does not need the agricultural equipment, he needs the services of a tractor. So, somebody who knows how to maintain that tractor must have a service center, where he provides the services to the farmer.”John Dramani Mahama
His Excellency John Maham explained that the tractors his government purchased for farmers broke down in a short period because they were not properly maintained.
“We gave the tractors to the farmers, in a year or two the tractor had broken down because he [farmer] doesn’t know every six months you must change the engine oil, you must change the filters, you must grease the tractor. He doesn’t know that. So, we will approach it differently.”John Dramani Mahama
Former President Mahama is currently in Munich, Germany, attending the 59th Munich Security Conference 2023. The conference provides a platform for high-level debates ‘on key foreign and security policy challenges’. Mr Mahama is the Chairperson of the Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa.
The session was opened by President Mahama as Chair of the Tana Forum and addressed by the Chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Ambassador Christoph Heusgen, and Wolfgang Niedermark of BDI, the Federation of German Industries.
Dangers of coups in Africa
Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo has urged the international community to send a clear message to coup plotters that coups have never been, and will never be durable solutions to Africa’s political, economic and security challenges.
Delivering the keynote address at a side-event organised by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, in Munich, Germany, the President stated that “there are those who still hanker after authoritarian, personal rule, because they claim Africa is underdeveloped and democracy is cumbersome, and we need to get things done in a hurry”.
“Statements condemning coups alone without corresponding action will, however, achieve little or nothing, as witnessed in recent times. This problem requires collective agreement, effective deterrence, bold action and, equally important, adequate preventive measures.”President Akufo-Addo
Quoting from the 2019 Annual Risk of Coup Report, he indicated that Africa has experienced more coup d’états than any other continent, which, he said, is “an unsavoury statistic”.
Citing the case of Ghana, President Akufo-Addo noted that political instability described much of the early decades of the nation’s life as an independent nation, and Ghana became notorious for sampling every and any type of political experiment.
“The one-party-state of the First Republic was overthrown in our first military coup, and the Second and Third Republics, which were practicing democratic governance, were also overthrown by coup d’états. My father, President of the 2nd Republic, was overthrown some fifty-one (51) years ago, on 13th January 1972. Kutu Acheampong’s coup brought his stay in office to an end.”President Akufo-Addo
In implementing existing continental and regional instruments and protocols, the President noted that defaulting Member States are condemned and suspended from the activities of continental and regional bodies, and individual coup-makers are sanctioned.