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Opinions of Saturday, 25 September 2004

Columnist: Bernasko, Glimeti

Who Reigns In Ghana?s Political Jungle, The Hunter Or The Hunted?

The big question is, can we compare the Ghanaian political scene to the jungle? Before answering this question, we have to know what a jungle is and what happens there. According to the Oxford Concise Thesaurus, a jungle is ?a forest or wilderness?. What is clear is that, in the forest there is no ruler or king though the lion has been named the king of the jungle, but is this always true? In order for a particular animal to rule or survive in the wilderness, that animal has to be strong or has a lot of tricks under its sleeves.

The above is made possible because in the jungle, the only law that operates is,? the law of the survival of the fittest? This law implies that, to be able to reign in the jungle, you must be the fittest. This leads us to ask the question, who then is the hunter and who is the hunted? A deduction from the law of the jungle suggests that, the strongest animal in the jungle is the hunter where as the weakest is the hunted.

But is there any particular hunter in the jungle? Of course the answer is no. The reason is, any animal could be a prey or a predator at any particular point in time depending upon the type of animals that meet. As a result, we see in the jungle animals that were once ?hunters? (because they were stronger than the animals they met) but later became ?the hunted? (because they also met animals who were stronger than they were). This has created a situation in the jungle whereby where as one animal is always hunting, one is always on the run. Among the animals in the jungle are the Lion, Monkey, Wilder- beast, Leopard, Zebra, Elephant, Tiger, Chimpanzee, Snakes, Bear, Cheetah, Grizzly and the Wolves just to mention but a few.

If there is no ruler in the jungle as the ruler (hunter) could also become the hunted at anytime, then the question is, can we compare the Ghanaian political environment to the Jungle as it is a well known fact that there are political rulers in our country?

COMPARING THE GHANAIAN POLITICAL ENVIRONMENT WITH THE JUNGLE.

In normal sense, it may be difficult to compare a jungle with our political environment because, where as animals and plants are found in the jungle, human beings reign in our political environment. What is vivid is that there are a lot of differences between animals and human beings. This difference is made manifest especially in the way we think, live, eat and behave. Based on this, comparing the Ghanaian political environment with the jungle in terms of similarities may be untenable. Notwithstanding, the way our political leaders behave may justify any theory or argument that supports the view that our political environment is analogous to the jungle. Our political environment since independence in 1957 has created a situation similar to that of the jungle, that is, the ruling party (the strongest) is either always hunting or being criticised as the hunter where as the opposition party/parties are always being hunted or think they are being hunted (weakest).

It has become a norm that most of the opposition members to the ruling government are always running away from the government. What is funny is that, as soon as the dial changes and the opposition gains power, then we see the members of the previous government running away from the new ruling party. What is sympathetic is that, these members run away either because they are being pursued by the new government or due to their own evil deeds when in power. What we see over here is not far different from what persist in the jungle ?THE HUNTER AND THE HUNTED?. The ruling party (the stronger) is always the hunter where as the opposition (the weaker) is the hunted. It is now not a secret that the law of the jungle clearly operates in our political environment that is ?THE LAW OF THE SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST?.

LESSONS FOR THE FUTURE

The ruling government always justifies their actions on the excuse that those who are being hunted committed crimes and other atrocities when in power. Where as this may be true taking into account the evils that were committed by those who are being hunted when in power, others see the actions of the ruling party as witch hunting.

Where as its important to deal with the wicked people in our society, it is equally important to make sure fairness is ensured in dispensing justice. However, the only problem we have got as Africans is that we do not know how to handle difficult situations, for instead of dealing with the problem in a positive way, we rather handle it wrongly and it turns out to be a trap for us when we are out of power. My advice for our political leaders is that, they must know how to deal with the members of the old regimes especially those whose head the public call for. They must know that Moses followed the multitude and as a result was not able to enter the promise land. Problems and complaints should be handled objectively and should be completely void of any tribal sentiment so that one day nobody would also rise up and accuse today's leadership of their judgements. If this is not done, then we must know that instead of punishing people to deter others from following the footsteps of evil doers it rather becomes "a pillar of vengeance" against which people rise against others in our society.

We must know that the western world also go through all that we are experiencing in Africa. Why is it that ours always end up in blood shed? when shall we make Africa a better place to live? when shall we live in our own continent without fear and intimidation? When shall we make our continent a place of abode for human beings instead of making it animal kingdom where the "survival of the fittest rule operates"

My word for the present and future Ghana governments is that, they must know that they would never remain in power forever and as a result should carefully check their doings when in power. Abuse of power has been the major cause for the creation of Autocrats, Tyrants, Power conscious leaders, Demagogues and Dictators in Africa. Why? because they always think they would remain in power forever and forget that it is God who enstools a king and as a consequence abuse the power that they are entrusted with. When their time is up for them to go, then their past deeds begin to haunt them and they end up resorting to all possible means that would help them remain in power. I therefore agree with Julius Caesar that, "the evil that men do live after ....."

The above is what has been going on in Africa since the birth of human rule, and previous leaders may they be kings, military rulers or democratically elected governments for fear of their evil deeds when in power therefore use all possible and available means to stay in power which has been Africa?s problem before even the white man came to Africa. Who shall we blame for our woes? Why do others blame the white man for our woes when we have built a kingdom similar to that of the animal kingdom for ourselves. My prophesy to our leaders is that, as the animal kingdom is gradually being taken and occupied by men of superior intelligence so shall our kingdom be one day if we refuse to learn. Even if it had been the white man who is the cause of our problems, would one not even say it testifies and confirms our foolishness? I believe we are intelligent people. However, we can only be described by what we have built around ourselves.

We call for peace, unity, economic and political developments in our churches, homes, streets, mosques, work places among others but what do we get or see? hatred, war, confusion, disease, bitterness, revenge, division, poverty and intimidation.

One thing we should never forget is that, We shall never run away from the "effects while we continue to fulfil the causes" (J, Allen). We get exactly what we sow that is why we are going through what we are going through and probably we are yet to see worst things. Our circumstances and surroundings can only change when we change from "our insides" We have established what is exactly inside us so why do we complaint? Our pastors, Imams, politicians, parents and teachers who preach and call for prayers in order for God to bless our country should know that we cannot make mockery of God because, the inside part of a man could only be seen from the circumstances he has built around himself so why the hypocrisy?

What needs to be done is to choose leaders who are selfless, patriotic, competent, God fearing and has the interest of the people at heart. The ruling party both present and future should stop the habit of trying to "kill" all opposition parties whiles members of the opposition should also stop politicising every policy of the ruling government in order to tarnish its image. In other words, we should punish the evil ones in our society and criticise the policies of the government but what ever we do should be done in the best interest of the nation. This is the only difference between us and the Western world. Where as their leaders fight for their country our leaders fight to achieve or fulfil their selfish ambitions.

LET US WORK TOGETHER AND MAKE GHANA A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE. IT IS OUR RESPONIBILITY AND NO ONE COULD EVER COME AND DO IT FOR US


Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.