The event, which took place at the Accra International Conference Center, saw ministers of state, members of Parliament, members of the diplomatic corps and students, among others, in attendance.
President Mahama acknowledged that the plan is long overdue.
“With the launch of this process, we commit to taking a critical look back to our record of national development, drawing important lessons from our achievements and challenges alike,” he said.
“It is a process that should afford us the opportunity to have honest and open discussions of our aspirations as a people and what we need to do to realise those aspirations.”
Tuesday’s launch is to initiate a nationwide consultative programme by the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), under whose auspices the plan is being developed, until implementation in 2018.
Ghana has seen a number of short to medium-term policies with most fluffing in implementation.
“As a nation, we have prepared and implemented various development initiatives over many years across many Governments,” President Mahama noted.
“Our national development agendas have often reflected short-term development priorities that tended to change from one regime to the other, without the consistency and cohesion that provide stability and sustainability of results.”
He, therefore, charged the Commission to be concise on what to factor into the 40-year development plan, tasking the team to make use of technology in the consultation exercise.
“Today’s landmark ceremony must lead to a lasting legacy for generations yet to come.”
Various stakeholders including Organised Labour, students, religious groups and political parties, among others, pledged solidarity for the initiative.