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Political controversy to deepen over GSS jobs data

Political controversy over the employment figures is set to deepen following the release of first of its kind, a report about job creation in the country.

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS), in its maiden report claimed the economy created more than 200 thousand jobs in 2014. The agriculture sector emerged as the sector that created the least number of jobs in the year under review.

The maiden GSS job creation report comes at a time when employment and job creation have become a major issue dominating the 2016 election campaign.

Functionaries of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) have been churning out varying figures about job creation in the country.

In one report, the government claimed it has created more than 600, 000 jobs in the country. Another report has it that close to about 1m jobs have been created by the NDC since it came into power in 2009.

These figures have fiercely been opposed by the opposition New Patriotic Party which claimed jobs created by the NDC are few.

However, on June 14, GSS issued its first ever comprehensive job creation report that is expected to inflame the controversy surrounding statistics about job creation.

The report said the Ghanaian economy created 207, 492 jobs in 2014. The manufacturing sub-sector created the largest number of jobs. It also found that nearly nine out of every ten new jobs created took place in the services sector.

The agriculture sector which used to employ most Ghanaians is now officially the poorest performing sector when it comes to jobs created in 2014. It created only 1756 jobs.

The report noted the Ashanti Region, which happens to be the stronghold of the NPP recorded the highest number of net new jobs in the Agriculture sector.

Juxtaposing the GSS statistics and the government claim of 600, 000 jobs created, the argument will thus be that in one and half years since the survey was conducted, the government added at least 400, 000 jobs.

This conclusion is predicted to set the controversy aflame in the coming days.