We are done with the elections, and counting is underway. Nothing I am going to write here will change anything. The hours between now and the time the Electoral Commissioner makes the final declaration must, of necessity, be a period of solemn reflection, on what we think of our country Ghana.
So I voted, and I voted wisely. I voted at Challenging Heights school (now Friends International Academy), Sankor, polling station B, Winneba. There was absolutely no queue at the time I arrived, so I walked straight to check my name, and all was fine.
As I opened the ballot paper, and began to look for the person I had already taken the decision to vote for, I said a sentence of prayer, then I remembered John 3:16 “for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish but have everlasting life”.
This is a Biblical injunction, and as a Methodist I have to obey the Bible, shouldn’t I? So for a moment I paused to think more.
A I paused, and thought more, I realized Ghana is sick, our country is sick of being turned into an election machine, and being run as though the only good thing about our country is being a center for electoral contest.
Our country is sick, it is really sick, of mediocrity, it is sick of corruption, it is sick of bad governance and weak governance institutions. The biggest problems facing our country is not the numerous armed robbery attacks, our biggest problem is the numerous educated thieves in public service. It is not only a developmental challenge, the high unbridled levels of corruption is a security threat to our very lives.
I listened to Reverend Sam Korankye Ankrah preached last Sunday. It was picked up live on Peace FM. He was preaching about peace. He quoted Proverbs 15:27, and Proverbs 20:21. Proverbs 15:27 reads: “Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household, and he who takes bribes will die”.
So with this scripture in mind, I voted, and I left.
One of my biggest fantasies of life has been a wish to have the capabilities to manipulate the unknown. There have been several times in my solemn moments that I had wished I had a special power that creates a mysterious computer software program that could detect the bank accounts of politicians and public officers. And here I am not interested in the bank accounts of private individuals or companies, they are not the ones who take the taxes from me.
In one of those fantasy moments I saw myself with the ability to detect when government contracts are inflated, and who exactly benefitted from the differences. Then my special spiritual software traced the corrupt cash to the bank where it was deposited. As soon as the money was paid, my software transferred it back into the national account.
And the software had the ability to make corrupt public officials impotent thereafter. So when I took the money away from the person’s bank account, I also made him impotent instantly, and asked him to confess publicly otherwise the software will strip him on the street within 24 hours.
Thereafter I saw ministers, Directors of state institutions, District Assembly officials, all lined up, one after the order, coming to me to confess how much they created, and how much they looted, and I felt so powerful. I plan to write a whole book on how this my spiritual software works.
People are suffering my brother. One of the reasons why I decided not to own anything personally, and to have everything I have worked for ascribed to Challenging Heights and its affiliates, is the constant pain I bear in my heart, of seeing sufferings in the hearts and eyes of people who have nothing.
In my line of work I see pains, I see very little children with massive tears, and I see their eyes filled with love, frustration, starvation, and I bleed. Sometimes I wish I own everything in this world, so that I can give everything I have, just so that every one child will be saved, so that every one child will have food, and drink safely.
Maybe I am being too hard on myself, but I am a very unhappy person, I am a very sad person. I die every day, I only live because I live.
The biggest burden on my heart has been the GHC51million our government gave to Woyome, for no work done. That money alone has caused me more health problems than anything in my life. In my private moments, I have prayed more, I have reflected more on this scandal than anything else in life in the last three years, and that is exactly what my vote stood for.
I have thought about the Woyome scandal, I have listened to those who know more about it, I have listened to Woyome himself. I have listened to judges who have sat on the case, and all I keep concluding is that this was a case of a forcible rape of a neglected 49-year old anemic pregnant virgin woman.
And in my heart, I know that the cry of many children who are starving across the country, those children who died of common malaria, the cry of mothers who died during child birth, all these pains will speak one day, and as reverend Sam Korankye Ankrah has said, anyone who took a portion of that money, and anyone who is directly or indirectly involved, those who through deliberate actions and deliberate inactions are scheming to help Woyome make nonsense of the money, I tell you my brother, one day, and that day will soon come, that day God will rule, and justice will be served.
Each time I have thought of Mannesseh Azure Awuni, each time I have thought of Martin Amidu, each time I have thought of Anas Aremeyaw Anas, each time I have thought of these individuals, I have given myself hope that something good is possible in Ghana.
There have been several times that I had wished I had good enough money to give to these individuals, I had wished I could loan my witch crafty software to Anas to operate spiritually. I have in many instances wished Manasseh had my spiritual software to know everything, to expose everything. Sometimes I wish God will actually make those moments real, so that I could loan that spiritual software to Martin Amidu to detect all the unknown monies stolen from Ghana.
But since I cannot continue to live in such spiritual fantasies, I have to wake up, and to find a more sensible way of supporting the effort of those who are risking their lives to save our country from greedy public men and women.
I have been working in the areas of child rights for at least the last decade. The problems confronting our children are a problem of institutional weaknesses, neglect, and blatant corruption. What is rightfully available to provide educational facilities, to provide healthcare, to provide food and water for these children, have been stolen by people who had good education, and whose children are already doing well, they are the ones stealing from the poor. They take bribe, they inflate contract costs, and they fail to do what is expected of them.
So I have decided to get involved. And my involvement will be through the Media Center for Social and Economic Justice. It is an independent, non partisan Ghanaian based non-profit media organization dedicated to the promotion of free, fair, just, informed and developed individuals and society where governance institutions and their leaders are held accountable and responsible for their actions and inactions. As a non-partisan media group, we will work across the political spectrum and deny partisan polarization of public wrongdoing.
We achieve our goals by working with an extensive network of media practitioners and other experts who share our ideals.
We believe in a fair application of the laws of the land. That the application of laws must not be seen to be selective, that public officials will elect to themselves when to apply or enforce the law, and when not to enforce the laws. This leads to arbitrariness, discriminatory tendencies, and victimization of some citizens. If a law is dormant, it must be dormant for all. If a law is active, it must be active for all. That is when we can say we have a just society.
Source: James Kofi Annan/[email protected]
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