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Opinions of Friday, 6 September 2002

Columnist: Amekor, Yao

THE FREEDOM OF SUPER HARRASSMENT

I know that one thing we did right was the day we start to fight for freedom. This is a song that very much identifies with the civil rights group days in America. These days saw the emergence of leaders like Dr Martin Luther King and the likes leading an untiring bunch of blacks in America on the road that led to black liberation from the dreadful shackles of slavery in the hands of the white Man.

The model accepted as the best to lead us to a radical growth and self-sufficiency since independence has long been to install a politically stable environment free of out outbursts and smear campaigns as we have now. Martin Luther King relied on non-violence to do what he did. Unfortunately, our political system has been systematically and consciously establishing itself as boxing ring. The effort is towards throwing deadly jabs and trying to open cuts in a bid to technically knock opponents out of contention for the title. The referee who remains and will be the media continues in earnest to favor the defending champion to the displeasure of the supporters of the challenger.

For nearly twenty years in power it's easy to point out one by one the achievements and lapses of the NDC as a political party from the very root of the party (AFRC/PNDC). It is really strange to me that the reference today has been on alleged misdeeds of which none has yet been officially certified by any legal institution as unlawful. Very important personalities have been out to publicly condemn unconditionally statements made by NDC irrespective of the essence of these statements to the national integration and growth process. Some media houses have demonstrated flooring the NDC as a party in terms of priority and spend millions in this light. As for the former first family, I can bet they might still be wondering why everything seem bad for them.

Rawlings can now guarantee himself a bad publicity for even the most progressive statement he makes. Jesus should not come from heaven to preach to us before we give credit where it is due and dispense off with crap stereotypes. In the face of the jittery, insecurity and lack of focus being demonstrated as the hallmark of the Kufuor administration, someone comes out to tell me they are offering Ghanaians a new window of hope and determined to nurture a new path to good governance and discipline, a new Ghanaian, bla bla bla. Give me a break my friend.

What do we call a new window of hope about a regime that takes delight in super harassment of it opposition. A leadership that favors touring and travelling, rather than strategizing to attract foreign investment. I cannot deceive myself by saying that I find hope in a regime that chances at the least opportunity to lash out with horrendous outbursts at someone's constitutional entitlement of free speech. Instead of focusing on the task ahead we see precious leadership effort directed at NDC, a party that lost its hold on the economy through complacency and lost of concentration. Ghanaians voted the NPP to power not as an agent to recount the inefficiencies of the NDC but to steer the country forward. That is why it is outrageous to hear such statements as: "the NDC has saddled the country into a 6million cedi debt whilst even we ourselves know we need debt to make profit.

The intentional departure from a manifesto full of unrealistic targets relative to our strength are issues we need to look at. The government cannot convince Ghanaians that constructing good roads, installing effective telecommunication, power, wholesome water, etc will not attract investors better than travelling all around with hard-earned state resources in the name of attracting investors. Which investor will ride on mere democracy and political goodwill to come to Ghana? It is time we stop the unnecessary smear campaign, flaunting of incompetence, subjective judgement of issues and face the problems realistically. That is the only way we can be sure of getting there. God bless our beloved nation.

Yao Michael Amekor.
St. Louis - USA.

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