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Opinions of Monday, 8 July 2013

Columnist: Kofi of Africa

Ghana is ripe enough to manage its own affairs

“That new Africa is ready to fight her own battles and show that after all the black man is capable of managing his own affairs.”


Recently 184 Chinese illegal miners were arrested and processed by the immigration Services for deportation back to China. A lot of people were elated. They heaped a lot of angry words on the operations of these so-called ‘galamsey’ (illegal gold mine workers) from China, whose arrest had been long overdue. But is Ghana’s current problems entirely the making of these relatively poor Chinese immigrant minority? I think not.

The Chinese are small fishes compared to the whale of exploitation from western Transnational Corporations (TNCs) and the IMF-SAP. The current focus on the Chinese is a clear diversion from the real danger to our economy - the massive levels of western TNC exploitation.

Most of these TNCS do not only control nearly 100% of our commodity resources and key industries, through the thieving 'divestment' policy of the IMF-SAP, they have been surrendered 100% control of administrative and technical decisions by successive PNDC, NDC and NPP governments. Doubtless, the capitulation of our successive governments to the diktats of western capital will amount to dereliction of public duty, and certain economic treason in the mother countries of these TNCs!

The full surrendering of control of administrative and technical decisions to TNCs, is through bamboozlement. They hide their true intentions through technicalities and double-peak terminologies that are hidden to real interpretation. This is not unlike our enchantment with the neocolonial (I mean our leaders act in the interest of the west as if they are still ruled by them) churches, educational, legal, bureaucratic, law enforcement, industrial and economic systems European colonisers structurally bequeathed us.

For their part, our successive see-hear-say-no-evil governments have pretended it is all in Ghana’s best interest. This asinine surrender of power to TNCs to do what they wish, while the Chinese and poor Ghanaian citizens scrounge for gold through the precarious avenue of ‘galamsey’, sometimes borders on racism and inhuman acts.

For example, it is routine at TNC operated mines that our poor native Ghanaian miners are submitted to strict security searches. Plausible homosexuals search the inner recesses of their backsides, ostensibly, to mine for 'stolen' items - as if their anuses are security safes! Unequally, TNC ‘executives’ can rummage around with their briefcases unchallenged.

It is also alarmingly objectionable that TNCs are seriously regulated to account for the linked-up precious gems that are often embedded in the rocks. (ruby, sapphire, garnet, quartz, etc: Worse still our resources are depleting ('getting finished'). The robbery is so glaring it is unbearable.

In 2013 Anglo Gold Ashanti claimed they made a profit of $6 billion (this is after one adjusts for their expected accounting corruptions). They only gave our naive government $2 billion of this!

So what is my solution? Ghana must nationalise its key export commodities and industries. Because it is only after we tackle the missing-link of our economic problematic, that we can really address the numerous challenges of nation and continental-building. In his book, Class Struggle in Africa Dr Kwame Nkrumah said:

"The community of economic life is the major feature within a nation, and it is the economy which holds together the people living in a territory. It is on this basis that the new Africans recognise themselves as potentially one nation, whose domination is the entire African continent."

The money released must be invested in an ambitious Development and Modernisation Programme (DMP). This will create a science and technology export-based industrialisation. Benefits: full employment; affordable housing, excellent education and health facilities. Foremost, it will place us rightfully beside other nations as equals in commendable achievements like telecommunications, aerospace technology, the creative industries, etc.

When I say ‘excellent’ education, I do not mean the NDC’s so-called ‘schools under trees’ policy, nor the NPP’s ill-costed, ill-conceived so-called ‘free SHS’ policy. These are defined IMF-SAP limits and can only amount to shoddy education. Rather, I mean an excellent education that focuses on analytical and creative innovation; that is based on scientific, literary and philosophical discovery and is situated in our Ghanaian and African conditions. Dr Nkrumah wrote:

‘Any educational program which fails to furnish criteria for the judgment of social, political, economic, and technical progress of the people it purports to serve has completely failed in its purpose, and has become an educational fraud (Francis, Nwia-Kofi Nkrumah, Education and Nationalism in Africa,

The DMP will regain us the respect we had from 1957-1966, when the west ousted Dr. Nkrumah and his development programmes that afforded Ghana: Black Star Line shipping Co (a fleet of 14 ships), Ghana Airways and GIHOC Industries that, allied to the State Farms and Worker’s Brigade (a far superior job creator than ‘Zoomlion’), gave our general workforce full, dignified employment. The slogan was WORK & HAPPINESS! Harry Johnson Aggrey writes:

‘Dr. Nkrumah…attempt[ed] to create a social and economic system in Ghana in which no one controlled or owned the most. His vision for Ghana was to industrialize Ghana at the shortest possible time. In 1962, on a radio broadcast to the people titled “Work and Happiness: Ghana’s Seven-Year Development Plan” the President launched a massive industrialization project. This vision was founded on the Volta River Project…to explore Ghana’s vast bauxite stores to process it into aluminum. To do this we needed a smelter. A smelter can’t operate without cheap electricity, and at that time hydroelectric energy was the cheapest. So Nkrumah moved and managed to convince President John F. Kennedy [Pres. Dwight Eisenhower] to help us generate cheap electricity to supply the proposed Volta Aluminum Company (VALCO) to smelt our bauxite and process it into Aluminum by financing that project.’ ( Harry Johnson Aggrey, Ghanaweb, 30 November 1999).

The NDC-NPP ‘leadership’ Mafia, who see-saw rules over us, has so far shown that they are a bunch of court jesters. Why do I say this? Since December 31st 1981, they have given nothing of substance to Ghana. They incestuously sell state properties: land, houses and cars among themselves (example: the corrupt NPP Chairperson, Obetsebi-Lamptey even won a case in our unpatriotic, headless-chicken courts, to retain the land he illegally and unethically stole from the poor Ghanaian citizen - 'the state')!

Our MPs narcissistically vote themselves high salaries and exgratia. They are implicated in high-level corruption (Woyome ‘judgment debts’, cocaine disappearances, nepotistic state contracting. etc). Currently they squabble noisily in court while their intellectual gate-keepers yahoo in the media for legal permission to continue to advance the interest of their IMF-SAP overlords in the west. The recent court reversals of illegal payments to, Waterville and Isofoton, attests to the high levels of incompetence and corruption in Ghana’s political culture.

The NDC-NPP jokers engage in the above frivolities while our poorest (some 80% of a population of 25 million citizens) go to school under trees with little resources; while they sleep in leaking tin and cardboard houses; while poor police monitoring and enforcement causes pervasive, murderous road accidents on our streets; while street and domestic violence - ultimately caused by poverty - visits our children and women; while our mothers, children and elderly die needlessly in numbers in our ill-resourced and ill-staffed hospitals; while the majority of our able-bodied citizenry are jobless, while our youth prostitute themselves on ‘sakawa’ Internet to western sex predators.

These are some of the real challenges that the launching of a DMP will resolve. We have work to do. Let us collectively strive to vote in a new, effervescent, courageous, patriotic, intelligent, athletic, executive, professional, Pan-African leadership. We need a courageous leader to buck the neocolonial order. For, to end where I started:

Regrettably, the recent media misrepresentation I the latest slander on Abu Sakara and Samia Nkrumah - is one of many plots that has blighted the progress of the CPP since Samia's leadership (egs: the highly damaging squabbles that ended with the exit of Ndoum's 5th Columnists; the internecine accusations after the Dec. elections). Why? Foreign and local subterfuge is hell-bent on destroying it. They know it is the most competent political force most able to enforce a Development and Modernisation Programme, to industrialise and elevate the standard of living of the Ghanaian people, and foster African unity. Vigilance must be the watchword, because like Dr. Nkrumah said:

“That new Africa is ready to fight her own battles and show that after all the black man is capable of managing his own affairs.” (Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, Independence Speech, 1957).

Leaders in Ghana/Africa must end their seditious relationship with the IMF-SAP and begin the DMP. We need WORK AND HAPPINESS NOW!


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- BIO-DATA Kofi of Africa resides in Leeds, UK. He is currently a Director of, Resources for Education for African Development (READ), a UK-Ghana educational charity that offers accessible community education from primary to university level. He is a writer educator who blogs avidly on Facebook and Blogspot. Mission statement: to examine and offer reasonable solutions to help address the poverty, ignorance and powerlessness of the Ghanaian/African poor.

He lectured, Media & Cultural Studies and Sociology (the University of Leeds, and Leeds Metropolitan University - 1992-07). He also worked variously as: Assistant Editor, Third World Book Review; freelance journalist (West Africa, Africa, Afrique Asie, etc), as Media Researcher (Campaign for Press Freedom); a Printer and Graphic Designer.

He was the 1985 Mohammed Maiga laureate in journalism for Africa (“Ghana’s Daughters in Lagos”, Feb.1985, Afrique Asie). He received the prize from the late, President Thomas Sankara in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Blog: Mb phone: 0044 7943 969651 Email: