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Opinions of Friday, 18 December 2009

Columnist: Aidoo, Ato

What is happening in Ghana?

By Ato Aidoo

“People are too busy to write, but love for a country cannot be sacrificed because we either succeed or fail together, and silence is not an option” – Walter Bridge.

News emerging from Ghana presents a scary picture to the international community and can obstruct the quest to deepen democracy, and unite the people for development.

Politicians once again, would not learn to suppress their ego, as they “sermonize” self-importance. The sorry state of government agents in the media highlights a shameful arrangement through which Kwesi Pratt Jnr, a “rent-a-quote” journalist, and others, coordinate a deceptive agenda.

The truth is that, when people were desperate for power, they lied about everything (the birth of Jesus Christ being the only exception). Prior to Elections 2008, there were blatant pronouncements well crafted to attract public sympathy. Today, we are all witnessing how falsehood triumphed over the truth.

Nevertheless, with just over 11 months in power, politicians who presented themselves as humble, have now become intolerant to opposing views, and their talking while they contribute to public debate is quite gauche. The achievements they tout do not match the reality. They do not reflect in the lives of our people.

There is no need joining the debate as to whether Ghana’s President, John Evans A-Mills is slow in implementing his “change agenda”, or surrounded by people who many years ago announced their retirement from active politics. That is unnecessary, guided by the principle that leadership style differs, while politicians do easily change their minds, and we cannot blame them.

In the previous government, these same people opposed to its policies were full of condemnation, and embarked upon fruitless demonstrations in the name of exercising their rights and freedoms, and rightly so. Suddenly, the Committee for Joint Action has lost its voice and pedigree, and everything is perfect in Ghana?

On the contrary, the present government in Ghana is moving away from its promises, but there is no hiding place for these deficiencies, as people do not need a reminder to evaluate their lives, and explosive utterances through officialdom. This surly attitude of some people closer to the Presidency defies the promise of humility, tolerance, and change.

Fortunately, Ghanaians have witnessed how Koku Anyidaho, who until this time appeared polite, has changed to a curmudgeon, his tactless remarks during interviews a faux pas, and Hannah Bissiw, deputy minister for works and housing, who would not accept her name without the title “Doctor”. This is a clear departure from anything humble, and indeed, needless, having accused the NPP as a “party of the elite.”

The harassment of members in the opposition New Patriotic Party continues, so are Ghanaians who are supportive of its cause. Reports on human rights abuses are rampant, as the world watches this political witch-hunt, and physical attacks on journalists by cohorts of the ruling government.

Undoubtedly, this confirms that the new administration in Ghana has not been proactive, and is unable to re-brand its known trademark - of brutal force, and aversion to constructive criticisms, as the revolutionary past hunts it.

However, there is an outlet of relief for Ghanaians – that throughout history, deception and debauchery have come to naught, and the works of mischief-makers, indeed, do not thrive.

Author, formerly of the features desk, Daily Graphic.