“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
More than one and half decades ago, I used to write letters to the editor in the Daily Guide. One day I read a small note on the front page of the Daily Guide requesting me to call a particular number. I did and the one who picked the call mentioned her name as Madam Gina Blay, the editor of the paper (Now Her Excellency, Gina Blay, Ambassador to Germany). She asked me if I could write a column for her every week. I accepted the offer. She also asked if I could be doing it every week without breaking and I confided in her that doing that will not be a problem because I am a creative writer who once had a column in the Nigerian Concord, a newspaper owned by the late millionaire MKO Abiola. That column was called Random Musing but Madam Gina said she would like my column in the Daily Guide to be called ‘Time with Angel Gabriel.’ That is the historical background of my column.
When I started, I heard friends saying ; “It is not possible to do more.” I always smiled when I heard those comments because I knew I was a hard nut to crack. Sometimes it helps to minimize your achievements to yourself so that you will be eager to do more. It is like saying to yourself: “Yea, that was good, but I am just getting warmed up” as a way to keep yourself challenged. Do not be surprised why the circumlocution, because that is the way angels send their messages
It has been an eventful year since the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and his team took over the reins of power. When one day I met the Vice President, Prophet Dr. Alhaji Mahamudu Bawumia at the Flagstaff House, I asked him how things were going and he told me that the mess they anticipated that the NDC had caused during the electioneering campaign was just a tip of the iceberg and that with hard work and the grace of God, things will be alright. He asked me to remember him in my prayers so that God will give him the strength to execute his duties. I left his office with a heavy heart. He was then just three months in office but he looked tired. He might have overworked his brains because of mother Ghana.
Except those who are wearing wooden glasses, every reasonable Ghanaian will accept the fact that indeed, within one year, the Nana Addo – led administration has done what Napoleon couldn’t do. My dear and cherished reader, permit me to recount what the government of the NPP has achieved within a year and compare them to what John Mahama was able to achieve in a year in office and you will realize that the NDC are just making empty noises and disturbing our ears for nothing. May be they are jealous of the wonderful performance of the new regime. The sages say no matter how well the chicken dances, the hawk will never admire her. Jealousy is an incurable disease and it can kill. In less than nine months in office, one of the main flagship programmes of the NPP, the free SHS, was implemented and more than ninety thousand children who would have been roaming the streets aimlessly are in school. Candidate Akufo Addo did promise that day students will be served free hot meal a day and it is happening. The nurses/teacher trainees’ allowances which Nana said he will restore and which Mahama said that will happen over his dead body, had been restored.
Dr. Bawumia said in the run-up to the 2016 general election that he had identified fifteen nuisance taxes and that when the NPP came to power they will be scrapped and it was done. Today, the one district, one factory as promised by candidate Akufo-Addo has taken off and in no time factories will start sprouting up like mushrooms on anthills. Then the promise of creating jobs will follow and the unemployed will get something to do. At the New Year School organized last week, the man with the magic wand, Dr. Bawumia told his listeners that the one village, one dam will take off this month. You see, politics is like the way we play cards. Nobody will put his cards on the table for his opponent to see. You hold your cards on your chest and that is what exactly Nana Addo and his team did during the electioneering campaign. Anytime a campaign promise was made in those days all what the NDC could say was: “It is not possible” Shallow-minded folks!
One major campaign promise that candidate Akufo-Addo never hesitated to mention anywhere he went during the electioneering campaign was the appointment of a Special Prosecutor. The idea was dear to his heart because he had promised Ghanaians that his mission, his historic mission, was to fight corruption which led to the wanton thievery of the state coffers. Today, the generalissimo himself, Citizen Vigilante, Martin Amidu, a former running-mate to the late Professor Atta Mills, the former Attorney General and Minster of justice, a staunch cadre and member of the NDC, has been appointed by the Nana Addo administration to lead the fight against corruption.
When the NDC took over from ex-president John Agyekum Kufuor who introduced the National Health Insurance Scheme, the scheme began a nose dive until it reached a point where service providers abandoned the project. The scheme was saddled with huge debts and could not pay service providers monies due them. During the electioneering campaign, candidate Nana Akufo-Addo promised that when he got the nod, the NHIS will work again as it used to do during the Kufuor administration. As I am writing this piece, half of the amount owed the service providers had been released. And all this happened in a matter of one year. The Akans say if you stop what you are doing, you will have enough time to do something else. Instead of using the money to pay service providers so that the scheme could survive, Mr. Mahama and his cohorts preferred to use the money to mount huge billboards so that he could be re-elected to continue stealing our money. God punished them through the thumps of Ghanaians. That is why our elders say when God picks a stone, He takes time before throwing it at offenders.
The other day, Mr. Mahama lied through his teeth when he told NDC supporters at Techiman that the Nana Addo – led administration has refused to pay road contractors who had executed various jobs. A few days after that blatant lie, the government announced that so far one billion Ghana Cedis have been paid to contractors. Where then lies the credibility of the man who is desperately seeking for another chance to rule Ghana?
Since Ghana attained independence some sixty years ago, no government ever thought of creating Zongo and Inner City Ministry. When Bawumia was going round during the electioneering campaign he told the people of the Zongos that when they voted for the NPP, an Akufo-Addo – led administration will create a Ministry for Zongo and Inner City to take care of development in such places. The NDC communicators went round the Zongos creating the impression that it could not be done because the problems in the Zongos and Inner cities fall under the ambit of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development. The economists in the NDC did not tell them that the advantages of division of labour outweigh the disadvantages so they went about fooling themselves. The dream has come to reality in a matter of one year in office. No wonder President Akufo-Addo said recently that government is all about choice.
Is the NDC babies with sharp teeth aware that the one million dollars for each constituency is about to take off. You sit there and massage your testicles! Before you could blink your already tear-soaked eyes, things will happen and you will realize that it takes a man of vision to rule a country but not a playboy whose lust for luxury and Ford Expedition cars supersedes the welfare of his poor and downtrodden people.
Apart from Cuba, Honduras is one country which produces top rated cigars. One of such top cigars is called Asylum 13 Corojo. Few connoisseurs of this brand seldom get one to buy because the company produces limited quantities a year. As I am writing this piece, I have one stick on my center table. Guess who gave it to me? He is an octogenarian ex-soldier who fought in the Congo war. His name is Sergeant Musah Kanjaga. So here I go again, puffing and prancing away with angelic bombast.
Source: Eric Bawah/Daily Guide
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