Feature Article of Monday, 19 November 2012
Columnist: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
At the beginning of the Mills tenure in 2009, when she was the minister in charge of Women’s and Children’s Affairs, Ms. Akua Sena Dansua was a leading and shameless advocate for the reduction of the curricular duration of our Senior High School System from four to the present National Democratic Congress-minted three-year curriculum. And on the latter count must be quickly pointed out that no major Western nation follows a three-year senior high school curriculum; and so Ghanaians must really believe in the unequalled academic genius and/or mercurial aptitude of our youths.
Anyway, what was her rationale for pursuing such an anti-intellectual educational policy advocacy? Well, you guessed right: for the recently ousted North Dayi NDC-Member of Parliament, senior high school girls needed to be graduated out of school as quickly as possible in order for them to find husbands and start making babies before their biological clocks ran out of steam or ovarian fertility.
For a college-educated woman like Ms. Dansua, this was unreservedly the most pathologically and culturally regressive path of advocacy, at least as avid observers of the Ghanaian political scene, such as this author, perceived the same at the time and do maintain the same stance presently. And so, clearly it couldn’t be that the former Minister of Tourism knows what she is talking about, when Ms. Dansua rather pompously asserts that Nana Akufo-Addo’s fee-free Senior High School electioneering policy proposal can only be successfully implemented at the expense of other sectors of the country’s economy (See “Free SHS Possible Only at the Expense of Other Sectors – Dansua” Vibeghana.com 11/16/12).
At the time that she made her flagrantly regressive argument against the four-year Senior High School curriculum, the former Minister of Sports had parochially ignored the fact that the prospective husbands that she wanted her abridged three-year Senior High School women graduates to marry and get taken good care of would not be able to effectively compete on Ghana’s increasingly globalized and highly technological labor market, unless they had also been able to acquire a viable four-year high school and college/university education.
In other words, Ms. Dansua could not be half-sincere in her criticism about the Akufo-Addo fee-free SHS agenda standing to significantly vitiate other equally crucial sectors of our national economy. Indeed, were she so predisposed, the recently ousted North Dayi NDC-MP would not have so vigorously kicked against her publicly alleged punitive transfer from the Ministry of Sports to her present portfolio of Minister of Tourism by the late President John Evans Atta-Mills. Very likely, Ms. Dansua was more worried about the humongous perks, besides her official and regular salary that she stood to lose in her new job. Now, let’s talk about patriotism!
At any rate, as I have already had occasion without number to point this out, this nonsense about the Mahama-led NDC concentrating on the elimination of the so-called Schools-Under-Trees, before considering the prospect of a fee-free Senior High School education, is just that – arrant nonsense! The logical question that ought to be asked here, though, is: Where were these self-centered critics of the Akufo-Addo plan and their “Better Ghana Agenda” during the twenty protracted years that their party’s founding-father and ideological spearhead, Mr. Jeremiah John Rawlings, ruled the country as both a self-styled pseudo-socialist strongman and an elected de facto dictator?
And, also, precisely what institutions did the key operatives of the so-called National Democratic Congress enviably establish and significantly advance, besides the terror-mongering so-called Bureau of National Investigations, for Ms. Dansua to haughtily assert that the implementation of a fee-free elementary and secondary educational system is apt to significantly detract from the government’s efforts at developing other major sectors of the country’s economy? And just what didn’t the likes of Ms. Dansua say about the Kufuor-minted National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) of whose principal would-be railroaders like the North-Dayi MP have now become prime beneficiaries?
You see, the greatest stumbling block to Ghana’s rapid and healthy development inheres in the fact of there being too many visionless and incurably self-serving cabinet appointees like Ms. Dansua at the helm of our national affairs. And to hear an NDC Municipal Chief Executive like Mr. Francis K. Ganyaglo gush and beam silly with pride over the fact of his administration’s having successfully put 25 schools onto the New Patriotic Party-implemented School Feeding Program, without boldly and honestly giving credit where it is incontrovertibly due, makes me sick to my stomach!
Needless to say, this is all the more reason why the Mahama-Arthur posse ought to be sent packing out of the Osu Castle and Jubilee House come December 7, 2012. Once again, LET US PROTECT THE SOUTHERN VOTE AGAINST THE EVIL AND MORALLY REGRESSIVE MACHINATIONS OF “LITTLE DRAMANI”!!!
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D. Department of English Nassau Community College of SUNY Garden City, New York Nov. 17, 2012 ###