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Opinions of Monday, 18 November 2013

Columnist: Asamoah-Siaw, Kofi

Ghanains Deserve Some Respect from the Mahama Gov't

PPP TO THE MAHAMA ADMINISTRATION – GHANAIANS DESERVE SOME RESPECT
The Minister of State in charge of Financial and Allied Institutions, Fifi Kwetey this past Friday said on an FM radio station that “…monies for development do not drop from heaven, they come from taxes." Our question is, why such arrogance and “in-your-face” talk from the halls of power? Has the Mahama-led NDC administration turned Ghana into heaven on earth for some people and left the rest of us out to suffer? Is there something the rest of us are missing? Does someone want to give us a reason to call some members of the current administration “callous leaders”? Such arrogance exhibited by people in power is worrying especially coming from people who belong to a political party that in opposition used words such as “impunity”, “arrogant”, “profligate spenders”, “pompous”, etc. against the people in power; and campaigned to do better. Some members in this administration have called Ghanaians all kinds of names when we have complained about the pricing of petroleum products, water and electricity. When our youth have complained about unemployment, they have been called lazy.
We called it correctly from the very beginning.
This is what the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) wrote in January, 2013:
“The State of the Nation is a very shaky one indeed in January 2013.
We find it distressing that President John Mahama can ask Ghanaians at the beginning of this new year 2013 “…to commit to the multi-party democracy”…and rise above partisanship and grasp partnership while he and his NDC party practice the exact opposite – partisanship at its worst in Parliament, in their pronouncements in the media and in the award of contracts. Where are the positive energy, education and job creation President Mahama talked about? Where is the evidence on the ground that the economy has improved so much? Where in this country has the peasant farmer seen improvement in his or her pocket? Why do we suffer fuel shortages and power cuts in 2013? Why is sanitation in our Capital City still bad? Indeed, are we better off today 4th January 2013 than we were on 4th January 2009?
Perhaps President Mahama has forgotten that he refused to dedicate himself to a cause that is a crucial pre-requisite for lasting peace and prosperity – a crusade against corruption and an undying commitment to fundamental change in Ghana. Over the past four years, the Mills-Mahama administration has presided over a nation made poor by state-sponsored corruption. We look left there are judgment debts – Isofoton, Construction Pioneers, Woyome, etc, etc. We look right, there are inflated contracts. We look behind us and we find hundreds of millions of loans and grants unutilized due to incompetence and unwillingness to let the best people to do the work.
We wish to remind President Mahama that during the past four years, he and the late President Mills chose private solutions to public problems by allowing corrupt elected officials to pursue their own private interests instead of the public good. Instead of providing technical assistance to Ghanaian entrepreneurs, government officials went after big foreign deals so they can get a cut. They set up new businesses to compete with those we Ghanaians have built with our blood sweat and tears. That was the STX Korea Housing deal, the huge Chinese loan deals and the deliberate effort to starve the Tema Oil Refinery of crude oil among others. While President Mahama has looked on, illegal Chinese persons have brutalized our citizens while they rape and plunder our gold and other resources. This is not a path to peace and stability.
This is a nation in need of change, moderation and unity. Our actions must speak loudly in this direction lest we destroy the goodwill we have accumulated since 1957.”
All Ghanaians are looking forward to the better Ghana promised by President Mahama and his Administration. This will only happen when the leadership adopts a caring, respectful attitude towards the people. We also suggest with all due respect that President Mahama must stop the public relations tours and durbars in churches, schools, communities and tighten his resolve to deliver positive results. Our needs and expectations are not "thank you" tours; we all know President Mahama won the last elections. We did not elect our leaders to go round the country, burn fuel, spend our scarce resources on a "thank you" tour.
The results we need are the ones we must feel – housing, roads, lower cost of money, jobs, better health etc. We do not need more promises – the election was held in 2012.
We wish to call on President Mahama to advise his ministers and government officials to respect our feelings and current struggles to live a decent life - they must not insult us while we are down. It is said that “He who is down, need fear no fall”.
We must stay wide Awake to keep our Nation and its People safe, secure and united.

Kofi Asamoah-Siaw
National Secretary
17 November 2013