Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has earned the accolade as the most impactful and visible running mate and Vice President at least in the fourth Republic.
Since assuming office in January 2017, his presence and active championing of the critical policies and initiatives of President Nana Akufo-Addo and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government has been like a ray of sun piercing through thick dark cloud.
A Deputy Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, Mr O. B. Amoah who made these observations said the agenda-setting lectures of Dr Bawumia on the Ghanaian economy as vice presidential candidate has made him the standard by which all political parties will want to have their running mates.
Indeed, some other experts and politicians have compared Dr Bawumia to proposed National Democratic Congress (NDC) candidates and indicated that the current Vice President has raised the bar for all political parties, making it extremely difficult for the main opposition party to get a comparable running mate.
His brilliance visibly acclaimed by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on various platforms makes him the politician to watch, not only within the NPP, but more importantly from the perspective of the NDC albeit in secret.
The verdict on him was clearly spelled out by Professor H. Kwesi Prempeh, the Executive Director of the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) who said in the heat of the 2016 election campaign that, “In the current campaign, Bawumia’s unprecedented visibility in the NPP campaign, his strong command of issues, as well as his cross-party appeal and likeability have cemented his status as a star politician both in the NPP and on the national political scene more broadly.
“Added to his relative youth, this makes Bawumia the politician to watch–not only within the NPP, but also (and more importantly) from the perspective of the NDC. The reason is not hard to fathom.”
Like a prophet who foretold the rise of an emperor, Prof. Prempeh’s words have come to pass and Dr. Bawumia has lived up to expectations and has risen above all the standards of every former Vice President.
He is today the ‘poster boy’ of the government and the man responsible for championing the key and bold policies and decisions of his boss. President Akufo-Addo.
Individuals including the suspended former NDC Central Regional Chairman Allotey Jacobs, Dr Tony Aidoo and other NDC kingpins have all attributed the defeat of the main opposition party in the 2016 general election to Dr Bawumia’s agenda-setting discourses.
The Vice President has also received plaudits from chiefs, religious clerics, bloggers and many Ghanaians for his brilliance and deep knowledge in national issues.
Due to the intelligence, dexterity, humility, articulate, knowledgeable, a key partner and the incorruptible character of Dr Bawumia, the President has reposed a lot of confidence in him.
According to Mr O. B Amoah, the Vice President has been so visible and notable in government business that never in the history of Ghana has the second gentleman of the land been so bright behind the actual figure head.
“Indeed, the fact that Dr Bawumia could rise to become one of the most efficient and an impactful politician in the present generation was even spotted while in opposition”, he pointed.
Mr O. B. Amoah added that the Vice President’s unprecedented visibility in the NPP campaign, his strong command of issues, as well as his cross-party appeal and likeability have cemented his status as the star politician in the NPP and on the national political scene more broadly.
As the chairman of the Economic Management Team (EMT) his competence is felt by both locals and internationals on the quick and massive turnaround of the Ghanaian economy, making Ghana opt out of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme.
He has consistently set the agenda on national issues and made the economy the front burner of national and political discourse.
Since his entry into the political landscape like an unexpected spring of water in a desert, the subject that has dominated the country’s political discourse has been the economy.
A mentioned of Bawumia and one is tempted to think about the economy and even if one has reason to question the sincerity and the ability of his government to implement the economic sermons he preaches his political agenda-setting cannot be ignored easily.
Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia attended the Sakasaka Primary school in Tamale, and gained admission to Tamale Secondary School in 1975.
After graduating from Tamale Secondary School, he went to the United Kingdom where he studied banking and obtained the Chartered Institute of Bankers Diploma (ACIB).
He was President of the Ghana United Nations Students’ Association (GUNSA) for 1981.
He earned a First Class Honours Degree in Economics at Buckingham University in 1987.
He then obtained a master’s degree in Economics (Distinction) at Lincoln College, Oxford, and obtained a Ph.D. in Economics at the Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada in 1995.
His areas of specialization include Macroeconomics, International Economics, Development Economics and Monetary Policy. He has numerous publications
From 1988 to 1990, Bawumia worked as a lecturer in Monetary Economics, and International Finance at the Emile Woolf College of Accountancy in London, England. He also served as an economist at the Research Department of the International Monetary Fund in Washington, DC, USA.
Between 1996 and 2000, Bawumia served as an Assistant Professor of Economics in the Hankamer School of Business at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, USA, where he also received the Young Researcher Award in 1998. He was listed in “Who is Who Among America’s Teachers’ in 1999.
Bawumia returned to Ghana in 2000 to work as an economist at the Bank of Ghana. He rose from Senior Economist to Head of Department, and subsequently as Special Assistant to the Governor of the Bank. President John Kufuor appointed Bawumia as Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana in June 2006.
At the Bank of Ghana Bawumia:
1. As Head of the Monetary Policy and Financial Stability Department, he was part of the team that designed and implemented the inflation-targeting framework that continues to guide monetary policy and the workings of the Monetary Policy Committee at the Bank of Ghana. The inflation-targeting framework established reduced inflation from over 40% in 2000 to 10.2% by 2007 (i.e., before the oil price shock of 2007/2008) while maintaining relative exchange rate stability.
2. Was part of the team that was instrumental in designing and implementing policy initiatives such as the abolition of the secondary reserve requirements and the opening up of the banking sector to competition. This resulted in a major increase in the availability of credit to the private sector from 12.5% of GDP in 2001 to 28.5% of GDP by 2008.
3. Led Bank of Ghana’s technical negotiation team and was on the government team that negotiated with the World Bank and International Monetary Fund since 2001 through HIPC and PRGF. Partly as a result of these negotiations, Ghana by 2007 successfully ended its dependence on IMF assistance.
4. Served as a member of the Government technical negotiating team on HIPC Paris Club and Completion Point Negotiations. Ghana completed the HIPC process successfully with significant debt relief of close to $4 billion.
5. Was a member of the Government Team to Negotiate the Millennium Challenge Account Compact with the US Government. The MCA resulted in many significant projects such as the recently inaugurated George Bush Highway.
6. Was a member of the Government Technical Team on the Deregulation of Ghana’s Petroleum Sector.
7. As Chairman of the Capital Markets Committee, was responsible for the strategy for accessing the international capital markets with a debut US$750 million, which was four times oversubscribed.
8.Was part of the team that designed and implemented the successful redenomination of the cedi. Through this process, the cedi was considerably strengthened. Significant savings were also made by the Bank of Ghana in currency printing costs.
9. Was involved in the design and implementation of the e-zwich common platform for all banks, savings and loans companies and rural banks, offering interoperability across different financial institutions.
10. As the deputy Governor in charge of financial stability, oversaw the soundness of the banking sector.
11. As Deputy Governor Bawumia served on the Boards of the Bank of Ghana, Ghana International Bank (UK), Ghana Telecom, Revenue Agencies Governing Board, Social Security and National Insurance Trust.
Bawumia served as a consultant to the Economic Commission of Africa between February and March 2009. Between April and October 2009, he was a visiting scholar at the University of British Columbia Liu Centre for Global Studies and UBC Fisheries Centre.
In October 2009, he was appointed as a Fellow of the International Growth Centre (IGC), a research institute based jointly at the London School of Economics and Political Science and Oxford University that provides advice on economic growth to governments of developing countries, specifically serving as an IGC Team Member for Sierra Leone.
He also served as an advisor to the Central Bank of Sierra Leone on the redesigning of the organizational structure of the bank and its monetary policy framework.
Between October 2009 and October 2010, he was a Senior Research Associate at the Centre for the Study of African Economies at the Department of Economics, University of Oxford. In January 2011, Bawumia was appointed Resident Representative of the African Development Bank for Zimbabwe by the African Development Bank.
He is married to Hajia Mrs. Samira R. Bawumia with whom he has 4 children.