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Opinions of Monday, 5 November 2018

Columnist: Kwasi Ansu-Kyeremeh

Curse of leftover projects

Beware, my compatriots when decisions are left for you to implement. That is extremely important if you are dealing with ‘chop chop’ people who only chop, court popularity to cover their chopping and leave the action to you after they have chopped the money you will use to implement ahead of any implementation.

Their style of governance is to mouth projects and leave residuals unimplemented for a successor to complete. They did it by naming projects such as university of this and that, university without providing even a pesewa for the implementation of the project. Once the successor arrives, they go round mobilising (like they did in their nothing of revolution revolutionary days with their mobisquads) getting their elements to lead ‘no road, no vote’ and other ‘no this or that thing, no vote’ demos.

They launch projects with no money to continue months, weeks and even days to leaving office, hoping to claim one day, after someone has struggled to execute that project, they would claim it as their project. In their books, there is no motherland project. It should be their project. When someone manages to implement actual projects, they destroy those projects when they have opportunity to run government again.

That is what they did with the affordable housing projects of President Kufuor. Visit the project sites in Accra or Kumasi or anywhere else in the motherland and you will see until the last 22 months, they were still at the stages they were left on January 7, 2009.

If it is not only in the motherland, I haven’t seen or heard it happen anywhere else. That is, the Komenda Sugar project. I will not call it a factory because a factory is not just some structure constructed with no activity whatsoever going on in and around it. What you see in Komenda is someone’s intention to chop over USD30 million. It borders on insanity that you will put up a building, assemble machines without the material to process and call it a factory.

Having done that, now they are going round rabblerousing that someone would not command the raw cane material to fall from heaven so the factory can then begin to work. Congresspeople were born to procure; without procurement, they would have no interest in forming government. But for as long as government procures they will do whatever to be in government so they can, through procurement, create, loot and share its proceeds. For the sake of chopping through procurement, they would raise a building and call it a factory.

By their design and actions, there is now a syndrome of ‘the hanging curse of the deferred implementation of popularity driven project mouthing without implementation’ on ?sonomma. In no sphere have congresspeople demonstrated project mouthing without doing any action than founding universities.

They began in the 1990s with polytechnics are equivalent to universities without spelling out what that means. Then it was the northern sector must have a university so they mouthed UDS without providing what it takes to operate as a University. The Kufuor government had to provide the structures for the place to become a university in reality. Then they said university for every region. So UHAS for Volta and UENR for Brong Ahafo. Once again, no physical structures whatsoever; just mouthing a name. Once again, it was the Kufuor administration that actualised them in structures. Eight years of post-Kufuor, with all the oil and gas, cocoa as well as record gold sales, UENR is as Kufuor left it.

Never satisfied with mediocrity and incompetence, they mouthed 10 ‘technical’ universities with no definition of ‘technical,’ and left. Now it is up to the Akufo-Addo government to translate into concrete structures what Mahama pronounced. Truly, and true to congress character, ‘wo de w’ano d? nwer? a, ebi nnw? wo (if choose to weed thorns with your mouth, you never get pierced by any).’ Congress has also been the expert in talk is cheap.

Whatever project (footbridges, roads, affordable housing units) Kufuor left uncompleted, he bequeathed untouched oil and gas wealth to use to complete it. His successors chose rather to create judgment and other debt schemes to loot and share. See what has happened to the single spine which is virtually spineless now.

Congress abandons uncompleted gang of four roads, virtually done except for foot bridges, with untouched oil and gas money plus highest cocoa and gold yield funding money to complete over eight years. Instead, they shift to eastern corridor road for Ford attached contract procurement. They take all that money and chop; then, leave all roads still uncompleted. Only congress pays 1.6 million in cash for Edubiase stadium and leave it a forest and constructed to window level dressing room for someone to come and complete.