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Feature Article of Sunday, 7 October 2012

Columnist: Addi, Seth

Leadership Qualities Our Leaders Don’t Have

-Alert For Ghanaian Voters!
By: Seth Addi



Fellow Ghanaians, in a very short time Ghanaians from all walks of life would joint long queues to cast their ballot to choose a President and 275 parliamentarians. It was my initial intention to stay away from Ghana politics, as I have suffered persecution and faced life threatened situation in the hands of ruling NDC and its operatives to the extent that I have to run away to a foreign country to seek refuge and leave behind my wife and two children who are not even up to four years. But love for countrymen inspires me to write this article to enable the good people of Ghana and especially the youth to make informed choice when they go to cast their ballot.

Fellow Ghanaians very often you have heard the comment, “He or she is a born leader?” There are certain characteristics found in some people that seem to naturally put them in a position where they’re looked up to as a leader. Natural born leaders whose name easily comes to mind are our Lord Jesus Christ, prophet Mohammed, Rosa Patt, Bob Nester Marley, our own Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkruman, who were born of out of nothing but has risen to rule or brought great changes to society and the world.

Whether in fact a person is born a leader or develops skills and abilities to become a leader is open for debate. There are some clear characteristics that are found in good leaders. These qualities can be developed or may be naturally part of their personality. With all the personalities that are going round the counties looking for poor people’s votes, let us do personal introspection to see if they have the following qualities that will make them a good leader(s).

Fellow Ghanaians, a good leader has an exemplary character. It is of utmost importance that a leader is trustworthy to lead others. A leader needs to be trusted and be known to live their life with honestly and integrity. A good leader walks the talk and in doing so earns the right to have responsibility for others. True authority is born from respect for the good character and trustworthiness of the person who leads.

A good leader is enthusiastic about their work or cause and also about their role as leader. People will respond more openly to a person of passion and dedication. Leaders need to be able to be a source of inspiration, and be a motivator towards the required action or cause. Although the responsibilities and roles of a leader may be different, the leader needs to be seen to be part of the team working towards the goal. This kind of leader will not be afraid to roll up their sleeves and get dirty like what we saw in JJ Rawlings and captain Thomas Sankara.

A good leader is confident. In order to lead and set direction, a leader needs to appear confident as a person and in the leadership role. Such a person inspires confidence in others and draws out the trust and best efforts of the team to complete the task well. A leader who conveys confidence towards the proposed objective inspires the best effort from team members.

A good leader also needs to function in an orderly and purposeful manner in situations of uncertainty. People look to the leader during times of uncertainty and unfamiliarity and find reassurance and security when the leader portrays confidence and a positive demeanor.
Good leaders are tolerant of ambiguity and remain calm, composed and steadfast to the main purpose. Storms, emotions, and crises come and go and a good leader takes these as part of the journey and keeps a cool head.

A good leader as well as keeping the main goal in focus is able to think analytically. Not only does a good leader view a situation as a whole, but is able to break it down into sub parts for closer inspection. Not only is the goal in view but a good leader can break it down into manageable steps and make progress towards it.

A good leader is committed to excellence. Second best does not lead to success. The good leader not only maintains high standards, but also is proactive in raising the bar in order to achieve excellence in all areas.
However, each of these characteristics, I have not find in any of these personalities contesting for President and I thank God am not in the country to listen to these people or to even cast my vote for one of them.

I would have fill very proud as a Ghanaian, if it were personalities like Prof. Agyeman Bedu Akosah, Dr. Kwaku Osafo, Alan Kyeremanteng and to some extend Dr. Omane Boamah who were going round looking for votes to lead this country.

God Bless Ghana,

By Seth Addi
The author is the former managing editor,
Evening Tribune newspaper
Email: sethaddi@gmail.com

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