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Opinions of Monday, 13 November 2017

Columnist: K. Badu

Bear in mind, 55.6% of electorates voted against incompetence, corruption and arrogance

It is absolutely true that praiseworthy governance is not limited to the provision of infrastructural projects, but it also involves thinking outside the box and coming up with expedient policies and programmes that can improve upon socio-economic standards of living.

Anecdotally, there came a time when human beings lived together without rules or laws. Human beings, in fact, neither had government nor laws and regulations to regulate their day-to-day living activities.

Consequently, the uncontrolled disorder and illimitable oppression sparked grave concerns. And in order to remedy the appalling conditions, human beings consciously decided to enter into social contract.

In hindsight, mankind willingly came together and pledged to obey an authority and decided to surrender the whole or part of their freedom and rights to an authority. The authority, in turn, guaranteed everyone protection of life, property, and to a certain extent liberty.

In theory, the people agreed to establish society by collectively and mutually abdicating the rights they had against one another in the State, and, thereby vesting authority in someone or assembly of persons to enforce the initial contract.

In a way, human beings agreed to live together under common laws, and, thereby creating enforcement mechanisms for the social contract and the laws that constitute it.

In practice, therefore, our contemporary authority or government does take a cue from the evolution of social contract.

It was against that backdrop that President Mahama and his NDC Party entered into agreement with Ghanaians prior to the 2008 and 2012 general elections.

Certainly, it goes without saying that the NDC Party solicited votes from Ghanaians, and, in exchange, they guaranteed everyone protection of life, property, provision of social amenities, better socio-economic standards of living and to a certain extent liberty.

Dearest reader, if you may recall, during the 2008 and 2012 general elections, the NDC Party gave a cornucopia of Manifesto promises, including one-time NHIS premium, free SHS, ‘making dumsor a thing of the past, putting money in Ghanaians pocket, creating more jobs for the jobless, stabilising the economy, protecting Ghanaians from the menaces of galamsey and Fulani herdsmen, bringing an end to dubious judgement debt payments, fighting the rampant sleazes and corruption amongst others.

Regrettably, though, after giving all those richly interesting, albeit phantom promises in exchange of Ghanaians mandate, the NDC government woefully failed to honour the promises, and, a total of 55.6 per cent (44.4 for Mahama) of the electorates rightly voted them out of power in 2016.

In retrospect, the NDC government failed terribly to initiate expedient policies to overturn the failed policies of agriculture, poverty reduction and resource allocation in the areas of healthcare, education, finance, supply chain management and security sector planning, amongst others.

It is important to note that every smart and forward thinking government’s principal objective is to put advantageous policies and programmes in place in order to impact on the socio-economic standards of living of its citizens.

Nonetheless, President Mahama and his appointees were somehow oblivious to such fact and disappointingly took refuge in their controversial infrastructural projects.

What is more, the ever soaring inflation, the currency depreciation, uncontrolled sleazes and corruption, the arrogance of power and above all the high costs of living were too much of a bother to discerning Ghanaians.

Make no mistake, dearest reader, the reasons for President Mahama’s exit from government are multifaceted. Take, for instance, many observers attribute President Mahama’s 2016 election defeat to his abysmal handling of gargantuan corruptions amid dubious judgment debt payments.

It is rather unfortunate that the people we entrust with the national coffers would somehow deem it as a matter of urgency to give gargantuan sums of money belonging to the nation to people who have no entitlement.

Of course, there is nothing wrong to pay genuine judgment debts. However, I strongly believe that if President Mahama’s government had handled the payments parsimoniously, the purported GH850 million judgment and settlement payments would have been brought to the barest minimum.

Then again, the manner in which President Mahama handled the STX Housing deal which was supposed to provide affordable housing units to the security agencies leaves much to be desired.

Strangely, though, in spite of the fact that the deal did not materialise, President Mahama was alleged to have given us a bill of an excess of $200 million.

Moreover, after the failed deal with STX to build 30,000 housing units for the nation's security agencies, the NDC government entered into another deal with the GUMA Group, for the construction of 500 housing units.

The deal which was spearheaded by President Mahama was widely criticised by various stakeholders, just as the STX deal, following the decision to side-line local construction firms in favour of the foreign company. The unusually high cost of the project was also a source of concern to many.

The preceding sleazes and corruption allegations, as a matter of fact, ineffaceably stencilled on the mental sheets of the discerning Ghanaians, who fretted thy souls with disappointments and curses and waited patiently for an opportune time to show the NDC government the exit.

As a matter of fact and observation, the good people of Ghana witnessed so much duplicities, corruption, incompetence, nepotism, cronyism and frequent abuse of power in the NDC government.

It was in the light of the preceding unpardonable misdeeds that discerning people of Ghana bought into the NPP Party’s well-packaged change.

In a great scheme of things, the NPP Party entered into contract with Ghanaians prior to the 2016election. Indeed, the NPP Party promised wholeheartedly to improve Ghanaians socio-economic standards of living, through the implementation of advantageous policies such as one district one factory, one constituency one million dollars, one village one dam, free SHS, tax deductions amongst others.

Unsurprisingly, therefore, the good people of Ghana found in NPP, a credible panacea, whom they reposed their trust so as to set them free from the NDC government’s economic bondage.

Given the circumstances, President Nana Akufo-Addo and his appointees must not and cannot disappoint the vast majority of Ghanaians, whose invaluable efforts brought about the needed change.

It is, however, worth noting that when promises are broken, the bonds of trust are breached, thus President Akufo-Addo and his NPP government must not and cannot renege on their Manifesto promises.

Well, the promises may seem exciting and achievable. However, it is up to President Nana Akufo-Addo and his appointees to work assiduously and deliver the goods.

In sum, if the numerous and exciting Manifesto promises are kept, and, the able appointees live up to the expectation, trust me, the NDC Party will be kept in the opposition for a very long time.