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Opinions of Thursday, 22 February 2018

Columnist: Kwaku Badu

Re: NDC sympathizes with picketing nurses - Murtala Mohammad

I read with a gleam of incredulity the comments attributed to Murtala Mohammed, the former deputy minister of trade in the NDC administration, in respect of the picketing nurses , many of whom have not been earning any income since 2012 (See: ‘NDC sympathizes with picketing nurses-Murtala Mohammad; radiogold905.com/ghanaweb.com, 20/02/2018).

Murtala Mohammad was reported to have said during a radio interview: “In another breath, I will tell them to shut up and enjoy their ride. These were the same nurses who said they were comfortable with the so-called promise to restore the allowances and when we pointed out that they were going to suffer the consequences, they felt that the peanut thrown out to them was enough and therefore they couldn’t bother.”

He continued: “How irrational could it be that you are given allowances yet when you complete school you don’t have a job?”

A brief annotation

There is no denying or hiding the fact that Ghana is facing serious problem in the area of job creation which can obviously create insecurity. Suffice it to stress that the successive governments have over the years failed abysmally to create conducive atmosphere for jobs creation.

It is, therefore, quite ironic that despite their irrevocable infelicities, the officials of the outgone NDC administration would somehow find it convenient to shift all the blame onto the embryonic NPP administration.

Undoubtedly, the funds involved in the bribery and corruption cases of SSNIT, SUBA, SADA, GYEEDA, Woyome, Bus branding, Brazil World Cup, NSS, amongst others would have reduced the jobless situation if those monies had been put at the disposal of the jobless youth.

And, considering the fact that Mahama’s government left massive debt amidst huge unemployment, one would have expected the officials of such coarse administration to show a little remorse, but this is not the case.

Believe it or not, there is admissible evidence of profligate spending, gargantuan bribery and corruption, including monies that could have been put towards jobs creation but were abhorrently given to individuals who did not render any services towards the national development. Madam Akua Donkor of GFP, so to speak, is one such example.

While I do not want to succumb to the widely held assertion that politics is a dirty game, one would nonetheless not be far from right for suggesting that the political terrain is full of propagandists and manipulating geezers.

We should, however, not lose sight of the fact that political opportunists and cozeners are not limited to Africa, it is a global phenomenon. However, in my humble opinion, it is our part of the world (Africa), where political insobrieties and gimmicks are obsequiously entertained by the citizens.

Perhaps, more than anything else, this is so because we have greater number of unlettered folks, many of whom cannot choose between unrepentant tricksters and morally upstanding politicians.

It is, indeed, quite baffling to see the opposition NDC loyalists trying their level best to hoodwink the unsuspecting Ghanaians to believing that it is rather the NPP government that has woefully created the joblessness in Ghana.

The fact of the matter is that if the NDC administration had not wilfully increased the country’s debt from GH9.5 billion in 2009 to an incredible GH122.4 billion, we could have created more opportunities for the jobless youth.

I bet the level of joblessness would have been reduced to the barest minimum if the insensitive NDC administration had not clandestinely imported about 43 vehicles at a staggering cost of $9 million at the blind side of the incoming NPP administration.

It is absolutely true that the GH800 million dubious judgment debt payments, including the GH51.2 million to Woyome which resulted in the drastic reduction of capital expenditure would have reduced the level of unemployment to the lowest minimum.

Take my word for it dearest reader, the erstwhile NDC administration disgustingly created massive unemployment in the country through corrupt practices. The sleazes and corruption, so to speak, resulted in excessive public spending, less efficient tax system , needless high public deficit and destabilization of national budgets, heightened capital flight and the creation of perverse incentives that stimulate income-seeking rather than productive activities (‘create, loot and share’-apologies to JSC Dotse).