Feature Article of Wednesday, 11 April 2012
Columnist: Ntumy, Elorm Kojo
by Elorm Kojo Ntumy
With only a few months to the December 2012 elections the Ghana is once more caught in the fever of elections and political tension. Thanks to a few people who believe it is their God given right or destiny to attain political office, the good people of this country would have to sit on tenterhooks, with the threat of war and violence hanging over their heads until well into the year 2013.
It is always amazing how we manage to transform even the most basic of activities into something complex the moment politics comes into play. A straightforward voters biometric registration exercise and we make it look like the quest to find life on planet Mars. Every single day since the start of the registration exercise, we are inundated with stories of vandalism, altercations at registration stations, and thugs on motorcycles disrupting the registration process as well as reports of gunshots being fired at one registration center. To crown it all, we have “well educated” political pundits who, having the opportunity to appear on media platforms every waking moment, fling allegations back and forth, threatening fire and brimstone at their political opponents accusing them of disrupting the registration process and promising retaliation. In the comfort and safety of their homes and offices, they call on ordinary Ghanaians, who barely earn enough to get by, to defend themselves at all cost. If Ghanaians and especially the media dedicated as much time and energy to discussions on improving the educational system or the economy as they do to politics, the country would be in a much better shape than it is now. If all else fails maybe, our engineers should devise a way to harness the empty political rhetoric we seem to enjoy so much in this country into turning the turbines at the Akosombo Dam. Then for the first time, we might actually have something positive materializing out of this mud fest we call politics in our country.
Ghanaians went through similar state of affairs in 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008, now we have the same song playing as we head to the 2012 elections and honestly, the record is getting old. You would think that after five successful free and fair elections we would have attained enough political and mental maturity to view elections as just another process. It does not have to be an all out battle to the death where the winner takes all.
We pride ourselves on being a peace loving country but so did the people of Liberia and Ivory Coast and look what happened to them. From the few accounts I heard from people who lived in Liberia preceding the war, there was no indication or prior warning that they would soon be plunged into a decade’s long civil war from which they are only now emerging.
Peace is never guaranteed, as the examples in Liberia and the Ivory Coast clearly prove. We have to make a conscious effort to maintain the stability of our country. However, until we move pass the point where we ascribe godlike and mythical attributes to our politicians we can only hope and pray this country still exists come 2013.
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