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Opinions of Friday, 1 May 2015

Columnist: Akomfrah, Nii Armah

CPP May day message

THE WORKERS OF GHANA IN THE DEVELOPMENT HISTORY OF OUR COUNTRY
The Challenges and the Path to a Future of Progress and Prosperity

Workers of Ghana, members of the media, dear comrades; tomorrow the first day of the month of May will mark the day when the world pays obeisance and tribute to the workers of the world. We acknowledge on this day, the contribution of workers to social change, the growth of the global economy, liberation of the African continent and the reduction in the extent and depth of the exploitation of workers.

We recall in Ghana the heroic and patriotic struggle of the Trades Union Congress of Ghana that lit the flame for colonial freedom and the African revolution against colonialism and imperialism. We salute today the courage and fortitude of the leaders and workers of Ghana in our independence struggle. We salute and bow to some of your notable leaders in the liberation struggle of our country. We pay respect to their struggles and sacrifices were the patriotic search for freedom and prosperity in an independent Ghana founded on the principles of self- determination, social justice and the quest for African unity.

Their expectations were fulfilled as independent Ghana prospered under the patriotic leadership of the government of the Convention Peoples Party (CPP) in partnership with the workers and farmers of Ghana represented by the TUC of Ghana and the United Ghana Farmers Council respectively. Together they delivered and fulfilled the expectations of the people for social progress and improved standard of living with massive investments in the social and economic sectors of the economy.
Unlike the NDC and NPP who prosecute neo-colonialist development policies that impoverish our country, the CPP relies on and is irrevocably and unalterably committed to the Nkrumaist development philosophy of decolonisation. And this is what that means in practice:
The development of our productive resources to satisfy domestic demand and export
The diversification of the agricultural export commodity sector.
The modernisation of food and raw material agriculture for food security and industrialisation
The development of inter-regional and continental trade.
Investment in the social sectors of health, education and housing.

We believe this to be the path to employment and wealth creation, economic independence and social protection and not the bogus and fraudulent externally dictated Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS) that is implemented by the NPP and NDC governments.

Our experience is that this development policy prescription only reduced the poverty of corrupt politicians. The external loans that were extended under the programme became the feedstock of corruption in the system through inflated costs of foreign consultants' fees and road construction projects for example. (We hereby refer you to the revelations at the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament on payments made to a foreign road contractor.)

The Nkrumaist development policy choices of the Convention People's Party are founded on the recognition that the rights of workers are not limited to political rights of freedom of association and speech but also the delivery of their social rights to education, health, housing and freedom from hunger. And above all the right and duty to work.

We also reject in our economic and social development effort, the tight monetary policy of the NPP and NDC governments that has led to the "no money in the system" discontent, reduction in public demand and consumption, the thinning of the middle class, a lopsided growth in GDP that is indicative of the ever widening gulf between the rich and the poor and cumulatively, the reduction in the living standard of our people.

We know that though our development challenges are economic, the solution is political. We must in this view overcome the propaganda and psychological warfare that emphasise our weakness and deny our strengths.

The social and economic development history of our country and its golden years under the government of the CPP was a partnership between our party and the Trade Union Congress of Ghana.

Industrial relation under the partnership was not adversarial for monetary gains in collective bargaining but a partnership in the common cause of the struggle for colonial freedom and reconstruction of our colonial economy for the prosperity of our people.

The manifestation and acknowledgement of the benefits of this partnership in our struggle for colonial freedom and its socio-economic achievements is the gift of the Trade Union Hall from the Convention People's Party to the Trade Union Congress of Ghana in 1960.

Our Nkrumaist development philosophy therefore directs an engagement with labour, science and technology and the private sector for nurturing the necessary effective partnership for social dialogue to achieve our economic and social goals.

Our development implementation strategy with our identified development partners will not only create a passive "enabling environment" as peddled by the NPP and NDC but will be interventionist and nationalist to actively empower the private sector. Private sector development and an expansion of its formal segment are an integral part of the growth and development implementation strategy of the Convention People's Party.

We call on labour on this May Day to rise up and unite under the banner of the development goals of the Convention People's Party to a prosperous country.

LONG LIVE THE WORKERS OF GHANA AND THE TRADE UNION CONGRESS OF GHANA
LONG LIVE THE CONVENTION PEOPLE'S PARTY.
LONG LIVE GHANA.

Nii Armah Akomfrah
CPP Director of Communication
www.conventionpeoplesparty.org