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Opinions of Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Columnist: Michael Nana-Sasu

The competent thread that holds the promise of a dying nation

By Michael Nana-Sasu

I am a Ghanaian and like most of you a bit self-righteous. The behaviour of the main opposition party at any point in time in our political journey is the closest to the truest reflection of the complex nature of the Ghanaian.

In Ghana, we steal from the public purse at various levels through simple to complex schemes and still demand of our Presidents the best the world has to offer.

We pay bribes (sometimes openly) to anyone who will take (the Police are victims of our ways) them and still preach about the rising levels of corruption in our nation.

We throw refuse into open drains, drop litter with impunity, spit around with glee, sometimes from moving vehicles, defecate without shame in open spaces, urinate around without provocation and yet question why our beaches are not like the Barbados. We fume why we die of cholera, hold our breadth when we get to the ‘lavender hill’ and seldom take selfies at Ashiaman. We are Ghanaians!

We steal and or buy on the cheap Government properties mostly vehicles from the state pool, sometimes even from the Presidency and yet question if a new Government decides to buy new vehicles to replace the stolen ones. We are Ghanaians!

We defy our laws and deride the wisdom of our ancestors and trade our virgin forest and fertile lands for paltry sums of money from the Chinese and yet cry and demand that the Minister for Mines and Natural resources stops Galamsey and restores the lands to its original state overnight. We are Ghanaians!

When the Akufo -Addo Government moved into the Flagstaff house on 9th January, 2017, there was and still is an interesting inscription on the doors of some of the numerous washrooms on the first floor of the Flagstaff house. The inscription reads, “Please flush the wc after use”. Ordinarily, I will let this pass. But then I say, if there are people (and there are) who even at the highest office of Governance in this nation have to be reminded to clean their mess, then the troubles confronting us are bigger than the transition team told us. But I am reminded, we are Ghanaians! We do the worst and somehow expect the best.

We, in the words of C.S.Lewis, make men without chest and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful. We are Ghanaians!

We refuse to (some of us) flush or conveniently forget to flush or both when “privileged” to use the WC, yet we expect a sparkling clean bowl anytime nature sends us back there. We are indeed an interesting breed of people.
Yes, I know that like me some of you out there do not fall foul of any of the charges aforementioned but our deafening silence over these wrongs makes us tacitly guilty of same. We also are Ghanaians!

The NPP in opposition vilified President Mahama but I suspect they expect the now opposition NDC to glorify President Akufo-Addo even if they (NPP) cannot say it. We are an interesting people.

The unrepentant borrowing spree of the erstwhile Mahama Government literally brought the nation unto her knees, saddled her with unprecedented debt burdens and taxed the very life out of the economy. Yet the NDC wants free SHS to start now and for everybody of school going age perhaps. They demand the commencement date of the One District, One Factory policy at every opportunity especially at the appointment committee. They chant One Village, One Dam even when they meet a DCE nominee from Axim. We are indeed an interesting people!

But in the face of all these velvet covered hypocrisy, I am inspired beyond measure by the resolute Guts of our President; Akufo-Addo. He is a rare breed chipped off from the old block. He is like a fountain that supplies confidence; radiates hope and resonates success through hard work and discipline. Akufo-Addo does not shirk responsibility nor makes promises he cannot keep or does not intend to keep.

Crossing the Red Sea has never been an easy chore and as such requires a leader with exceptional guts, because the beautiful people of Ghana like the Jews of old will complain at every turn. But I’d rather follow an accomplished but modest leader with a solid plan and stubborn guts to follow through on his audacious plans than complain and go nowhere.

In the heat of the public outcry following the appointment of 110 ministers, the President addressed the nation from his office. As I watched the Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed forces address the entire nation through the wonder of Television and Radio, my fears were allayed by the calmness of his spirit, the authority of his office and most of all, the honesty of his word as captured by the hope is his eyes. We have a President!

President Akufo-Addo in his first gear, has cut all nuisance taxes and liberated the private sector; the engine of growth to feed the accelerated growth of our industries and promote employment. Observe the contrast.
In the famous words of Dr. Omane Boamah, I say, “My President, Your President, and Our President”

is incorruptible, competent and a good father with guts moulded in steel. God bless our President and God bless our homeland Ghana.

Michael Nana-Sasu is a Research Fellow Danquah Institute