You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2018 05 14Article 651608

Opinions of Monday, 14 May 2018

Columnist: Kwaku Badu

The double salary clasping NDC politicians don’t deserve another chance in government!

Paradoxically, all politicians would want us to believe they want what is best for the nation. The fact, however, is that no politician would ever admit s/he only wants power to better his/her live. For discerning Ghanaians would never vote for a politician who would honestly admit: “I want to be elected because I like the salary, pensions (ex gratia) and benefits, the opportunities to travel and meet interesting people, and the trappings of power.”

Perhaps, more than anything else, our negative thinking towards politicians stems from the shenanigans and hypocrisy that accompany a job in which, in the cut and thrust of the day-to-day political encounters, one must always be right and the adversary must always be wrong.

And, the debatable worldview is that, one side is always motivated by the public interest, while the adversary is motivated by base and unworthy aims.

In any case, the vast majority of Ghanaians have a deferential regard for people who have the heart and the abilities to make sacrifices. Of course a large number of Ghanaians hold in high esteem people who have the wherewithal to do the right thing. And we are often inclined towards people who have the courage of their aspirations. Yet some politicians would betray the trust we repose in them. Why?

Whatever the case, discerning Ghanaians cannot do away with the politicians, despite their persistent relaxation and indulgence. It is indeed regrettable that discerning Ghanaians have to endure such shenanigans from a section of our politicians.

Somehow, we, the electorates, are resigned to give our votes to the politicians, who are in turn, obliged to implement expedient policies that would move the nation forward. Thus, in contrast to our expectations, it will, be devilishly difficult to do away with politicians, in spite of the persistent disappointments.

Given the circumstances, we should not and cannot stand accused of exhibiting risible and inborn proclivity towards the irresponsible public officials who blissfully dip their hands into the national purse as if tomorrow will never come.

Indeed, it is quite nauseating to see some public officials who prefer to be called honourable behaving somewhat dishonourably.

Ghanaian politics has indeed become a scorned profession, not a noble profession it used to be. Suffice it to stress that it takes good people—good citizens and leaders to build a prosperous nation. Yet a lot of good people would never go into politics. They dislike the toxic levels of partisanship. They hate the intrusive media scrutiny and they won’t pay the high personal costs of the political life.

Yes, once upon a time, anyone who gained a seat in parliament was looked up to and respected by all; alas, this is not the case anymore.

In most democratic and enlightened societies, the acceptable word is reasoning, unlike Ghana, where respect has always been the norm.

Unfortunately, however, in Ghana, one must always seek to discharge his/her emotional intelligence and show deference for fear of being castigated for upsetting the antiquated and the crude majoritarian Africa culture of respect.

Obviously, it is that hackneyed and dowdy word respect that has given the grown up people in Africa as a whole the licence to misbehave over the years.

For, if that was not the case, how come our shameless, incompetent and corrupt public officials continue to sink the economy deeper and deeper into the mire, create, loot and share our resources and often go scot free?

Apparently, you would be tagged disrespectful for criticising for instance, the policy makers who accept bribes and dip their hands fecklessly into the national coffers as if tomorrow will never come. For God sake, how could it be disrespectful for calling a spade a spade?

In fact, the Special Prosecutor, Mr Martin Amidu, could not have put it any better when he aptly beseeched the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Ghana Police to investigate the NDC MPs alleged double salaries to its logical conclusion and those who are found to have indulged in any criminalities prosecuted accordingly (See: ‘Double salary’ probe: MPs must face the law – Amidu; citinewsroom.com/ghanaweb.com, 19/04/2018).

“What is worrying for me is the knowledge that some people are even talking to the president to compromise so that crime will be overlooked because they are Members of Parliament…so Ghanaians will be awash,” he said in an interview he granted Citi News’ Umaru Amadu Sanda on Thursday.

“… Why should a Special Prosecutor be prosecuting ordinary Ghanaians and your honourables will be involved in these things; then they will be talking to the president to wash it up. Then I have no need sitting here. I won’t even have the conscience to continue.”

“Will I have the conscience to prosecute any other body for corruption if the CID finds something prosecutable and are not allowed to prosecute because Members of Parliament are involved? That is not fair.”

It would appear that in Ghana, the justice system more often than not, descends heavily on goat, cassava and plantain thieves, and let go the remorseless criminals who hide behind the narrow political colorations.

In ending, our Members of Parliament must earn the honourable prefix/suffix by living exemplary lives and desist from desecrating our honourable parliament.