Feature Article of Monday, 30 January 2017

Columnist: Kwaku Adu-Gyamfi

Ghana@60 celebration, excuse me!

By Kwaku Adu-Gyamfi

Why are we in a hurry to celebrate the birth of a nation that has been raped for decades by her own selfish offspring? Are we going to feast on Ghana’s misery or achievement? I’m confused!

In fact, people are groaning and hollering about the Ghana@ 60 celebration. And the question is: Do we really have to celebrate it with fanfare and all the trappings when the country is broke and literally crawling on its knees? Whose ideas is it any way?

Before I dive into it I just want to point it out that I’m a gung-ho NPP flag- bearer, but I don’t like what I’m hearing about the upcoming Ghana’s anniversary celebration.

Let me see if I can put it delicately. Now, suppose you have been appointed a CEO of a company which is on the verge of bankruptcy .And after being in office for just three months you decided to throw a big party –with all the trimmings— for the employees with the company’s little money. What do you think the shareholders will feel about you and your managerial style and financial prowess? And what are we celebrating? Is it Ghana’s age or its achievement? My inquisitive mind wants to know!

Look, when you live in a society with zero credibility index; where money has become the only way we measure ‘success’, a lot of resentment is built up when the nation’s money is involved in any activity. In effect, this independent celebration agenda could be interpreted in some quarters as euphemism—and an excuse— for money-minting mechanism for the ruling party.

For the life of me, I can’t understand our pre-occupation with celebrating the birth of a nation in a megawatt proportion when we have so much cloud hanging over our heads.

Unless you have been hiding in the cave somewhere in Afghanistan for the past decade, you can’t avoid noticing the siren blaring about the socio-economic potholes in Ghana.

What we need to do is let’s celebrate it on a ‘down- low’. In other words, let’s have the usual school children March –Pass and go home to lick our wounds and plan for serious ways to move the nation forward. Maybe (just maybe) when Ghana gets 65 years old and our financial situation looks stable and healthy then (only then) –we can throw a big party and invite all our friends and enemies over.

Please don’t scratch your head and wonder what I’m up to because this has nothing to do with politics—I’m just calling it as I see it because this is very serious. Just because I support NPP doesn’t mean I shouldn’t say anything if something is going wrong against the state and the party’s integrity and image.

We shouldn’t forget that Ghanaian voters are like hearts, they go where they’re appreciated and respected the most so to win their trust, hearts and souls we need to respect their aspirations and concerns.

As a concerned citizen of this great nation, I’m always tempted to daydream about all the great things Ghanaian government could spend money on to improve the living- standard of the people. Obviously the 60th birthday celebration isn’t one of them—honestly!

Most diehard NPP sympathizers think the party was anointed with odometer-like predictability therefore nothing should be taken for granted, especially at this point of the journey when their expectations are very high.

In this era of megawatt expectations any small hiccup in the political seismography can send a wrong signal to millions of Ghanaians both home and abroad to inculcate themselves against the latest social disease—the inflated political expectations. But, can NPP negotiate with the people’s desire to be “somebody” when things fall apart?

Unfortunately, this NPP administration thinks it’s in the business of running a government instead of finding ‘real solutions’ to our emerging everyday problems. This is nothing, earth -shaking, nothing revolutionary, probably nothing you don’t already know—the issue is execution, not innovation.

Have I offended everybody, yet? Sorry! Until we meet again, stay tuned. Be blessed, educated and well-informed.

The author is a social commentator and the founder of Adu-Gyamfi foundation for Disadvantaged youth.