Protesters are expected to surround Ghana’s Parliament House in Accra today in opposition to the legislative chamber’s renovations. The chamber was severely damaged by rain in 2017.
The new chamber will include gardens, a chapel, a mosque, a restaurant and a museum as well as 450 seats, despite Ghana only having 275 lawmakers. Ghana’s main opposition party, the National Democratic Congress, adamantly opposes the three-year project.
The opposition Economic Fighters League say the $200 million allocated to this project should be spent directly on benefiting Ghanaians, who are facing fuel price increases. The economy is strong, with growth forecasted at 8.8% this year and inflation fallen from 15.4% in December 2016 to 9.5% in April.
The government’s selection of a British-Ghanaian architect to lead the project suggests a preference for buying materials and labour locally. This would be a positive contribution to an economy on the mend.
If this project represents the beginning of more public spending, expect more boosts to Ghana’s improving economy. While the National Democratic Congress will likely describe this project as unnecessary in the upcoming 2020 election, expect the incumbent New Patriotic Party’s legacy of leading major improvements to the economy to make a greater impact.
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Saira is an analyst in the Current Developments team, where she focuses her research on the Middle East and North Africa region.