General News of Saturday, 25 January 2014
Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper has bemoaned the country’s inability to improve on the economy despite its vast resources.
Speaking to the issue of the downward trend of the economy, Kwesi Pratt Jnr told Suhiyini Alhassan of Radio Gold that the decline in the economy can be based on two factors: low levels of productivity, and the lack of control of the country’s resources.
Low levels of productivity
During the time of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s First President, the country produced lots of items which brought development into the country, according to Kwesi Pratt.
However, nowadays we import almost everything we use in the country.
Some time ago, Ghana was producing its own fridges, shoes, corned beef, etc and wonders how the country can develop when in recent times, there is no on-going production.
“The major factor to the decline in our economy is that we are not producing…our levels of productivity are simply too low. Look at the rivers we have in our country and we are thirsty for water; we cannot provide water for our people. It’s incredible…we have huge forest belt but import Kontomire from Cote d’Ivoire, tomatoes from Burkina Faso; what kind of people are we and what kind of leaders do we have?” he asked.
Lack of control of the country’s resources
"The other factor is that we do not even have control on our own resources," Kwesi Pratt said.
The managing editor lamented on why the country and its leadership are not making good use of the resources we have in the country but are rather ‘going round begging for alms. To him, we are not making good use of our thinking faculties.
“We should not be going round the world begging for alms. Why should any African country be going to China for loan; it is because of our low level of consciousness; the fact that we are not thinking at all. Our leaders stopped thinking many years ago…Africa has 50% of the world’s resources…if Africa has 50% of the world’s resources, what accounts for our poverty?...is it our inability to exploit those resources?...is it that we have handed over those resources to others; what is it that accounts for our poverty?”
Development does not come by prayer alone
Kwesi Pratt alluded that majority of the companies that were contributing to the growth of the economy are now being used as churches and has asked how the country will grow with such an attitude.
“Let us wake up. No country in the world whose major industries are religion and political commentary has developed. You cannot develop if your major industry is religion and political commentary so we need to develop the relevant industries that will touch our lives; Churches are replacing industries and it is a major concern…Jesus Christ prayed but his disciples also cast a net into the ocean and caught fish. We should learn from Jesus Christ and cast net into the ocean. Prayer alone won’t take us anywhere”.