Feature Article of Friday, 15 June 2012

Columnist: Tamakloe, Kojo

The bus is the same , only the driver is different

“ ’ (P S K Ampadu) Kojo Tamakloe

It was the hey days of the 60s. The days of the show boy, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah and the CPP . Changes were taking place at a fast and furious pace . We the people were illiterate and slow and were told we were suffering and “ communism” was being imposed . Soon we would lose our homes and we will all be dressed in Khaki. There will be no freedom of thought and the place will be like the proverbial “Animal farm “ by George Orwell. Soon it was banned and it was “we told you so” . Schooling was, Fee Free , so my old man told me , we cannot have mass education with dictatorship. “It is easy to rule over educated people , but difficult to enslave them”

But they said the ruling CPP was corrupt and were stealing the money. Yet, still the changes came ,Progress everywhere, state commercial farms, silos, construction works with Ghana National Construction Company (GNCC) , GIHOC to control the manufacturing sector . textile factories that were labor intensive to give employment to the people , estate houses, road works, bridges .Whereas before University education was for a select few , usually going to the UK , now we had “ Legon” .(Universities). Every body could go to “ Legon” . We all competed to go to the best schools so we could go to “ Legon”. We could dare to dream . But they kept telling us we were not free and these are what happened in communist countries .

Nkrumah has made himself into a god . Soon the churches would be shut down so we worship Nkrumah . The man is godless and so it went on . Do you know Nkrumah never wrote any of the books? The books were written by one Prof Abrahams . How could a “ veranda boy “ write those books. No, he never even got the Doctorial degree either . Only the UP had educated people and once they came to power all will be well. There will be heaven on earth.

Feb 24 1966 “ The Myth around Nkrumah has been broken and the CPP has been banned. “ It was illegal to belong to it. Also all Nkrumah’s books were banned . “ That was the restoration of “democracy”. They released all from Nsawam and there was mass rejoicing . Then we waited for manna from heaven as they started undoing everything. The tractors , sorry “ snow ploughs “ were left where they were on the morning of the “ liberation” . . The farms were left to rot and so were the factories. “Work and happiness turned into NO vacancies” .The corruption trials and commissions came up with NOTHING .Where are the solutions ?Where are we going or headed ? Austerity , they said as Nkrumah had misspent the money and looted the coffers . Unemployment and crime went up , so they took some of the people back to Nsawam . Oh those were criminals. Criminals ? but you told us they were political detainees for opposing Nkrumah . So” confusion efe nie bassa” . But more were to follow. It was then the song came. “ some are sitting well but others are not” . So started “ the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” . The idealistic egalitarianism was gone replaced by the era of the privileged few.

Today we are faced with the same choices , an egalitarian society as represented by the progressive parties, CPP & NDC or the choice for the privileged few(NPP)

Like yester year , the cry is about corruption , Woyome, woyome,woyome , but we set free the crooks like Tarzan, Asabee, Ken Agyepong, Amina, and jail cassava thieves and taxi drivers . We have forgotten how the cocaine barons ruled the land, the diplomatic passports given to the undeserving , the armed robbers who held sway? Should we put aside the contracts signed and arbitrarily set aside resulting in massive losses to the state? Who caused the judgment debts ? Who was the Attorney General and what has he got to say about them .? Should we put aside the looting of the State especially State lands with no opposition from the Flagbearer? Should we put aside his tenure as MP for Akyem Abuakwa? What of the fact that he has not convinced any objective person about his drug use Should we put aside the specter of dictatorship of a judiciary in bed with a political party ?

I dare ask what the record of accomplishments of the Flagbearer as Attorney General or Minister of Foreign Affairs are . How come they even looted lands under his Ministry and he said nothing ? Can we say the Attorney Generals department does its work more efficiently after he left? What about the Foreign affairs Ministry ?

Fellow Ghanaians , we are not illiterates anymore, nor ignorant . Let us ask how NPP will make the economy grow. ? How will we close the gap between receipts and payments . What plans do they have to give us food security. The Free SHS what will it lead to and how will it be paid for ? What will be the areas for skill specialization from the Free SHS program . Are non Akan tribes safe under NPP government that could have Nana “ all die be die” aka yen Akan for as President, and Kennedy “kill the Ewes, kill the Gas “ Agyepong , as Minister for Interior , Jake “the land looter” Obetsebi Lamptey as Minister of Lands and Mineral resources, Dr Okoampa Ahoomfe , Minister of Education , Dr Akadu Mensema , Science and Technology or Arts and Culture and Karbo as Deputy Information Minister. Do we see the trend.? Who will bring in the new ideas with these ethnocentrisms? Can you see how the pool of innovation will be restricted?. What will we get done under such bigots?

We need to mobilize and work with first our neighbors that we look down upon and the rest of the world. We need innovators , to groom from among us , the Steve Jobs, the Fords and Wright brothers , the Einsteins, and Newtons . That is what Nkrumaism stands for , where as Black people we can be united, respect one another and believe in ourselves . That is the only way we can be equal partners with the Chinese, the Indians, with the west

Nana Please tell us where you want to go, how you aim to get there Vote CPP , Vote NDC , let the progressives forces dislodge the forces of division, of violence, of disunity. Let us lead the forces of Unity across Africa

We do not need a different driver when the bus is the same

Kojo Tamakloe is an Nkrumaist and a Pan Africanist who knows in the Nkrumaist ideology and African unity lies our salvation