In the lead up to the 2012 elections, Sir you promised Ghanaians that when voted into power you will solve the power crisis, reduce corruption, reduce poverty, reduce petrol charges, reform public services, create the enabling environment for businesses to operate and create jobs especially for the youth.
Your abysmal performance, together with your team, over the last two years is a true testimony of what Ghanaians revealed in the recent Afrobarometer survey. The impact of the current economic mess created is being felt in all sectors. The Afrobarometer report is rated on perception but honestly it is a reflection of the reality of hardships in the country.
In the same report, over 80% of the Ghanaian populace perceives public officials as corrupt and you (Mr President) does not appear to be trustworthy. It took grace for the instantaneous death of the report which coincided with the World Corruption Perception Index (CPI) ranking that indicated a marginal improvement. Ghana is currently ranked 61st out of the 175 countries measured across the world.
The apparent failure of government to deliver on its responsibilities and promises, the mismanagement of the economy, high debt levels, high taxes, corruption and poor standards of living and hunger are the reasons most Ghanaians believe you and your administrators appeared not to be trusted to solving the socio- economic challenges I got excited by your promise to stop promising, bearing in mind, the many broken promises, though Ghanaians do not know the end- date of the power crisis.
Don’t you think that the wages for the new Power Ministry created, could be used to support power generation than the creating a new one? To remind you of another failed promise, you did promise a lean cabinet that would deliver a big government, rather we have big cabinet delivering little if anything.
Make no mistake; the announcement by the Electricity Company of Ghana’s (ECG) for the new load management timetable to affect manufacturing sector for the first time since the “Dumsor” crisis began several months ago, is an indication of the failure of you Mr president and your team to resolve Ghana’s problems. There’s no doubt that some employees of these manufacturing companies will lose their jobs whilst others suffer salary cuts as a result.
I have no doubt that employers will lay off some of their workers to prevent incurring massive losses. Sir, let us bear in mind that the energy crisis has weakened investors’ confidence in the economy. No wonder Ghana has in recent times been downgraded by two major international rating agencies- Standards and Poor and Fitch. There could be deeper challenges ahead but I am appealing to my fellow Ghanaians to clap for the President and his team for boasting of retrieving GHS 14.5million of our stolen taxes from GYEEDA and the scant revelation of 300 individuals being prosecuted for involving in various acts of corruption.
By the way, “Occupy Ghana” wants more prosecutions on the Audit General’s report. Ordinary Ghanaians want you, Mr President to call-back all state funds wrongfully paid to individuals and institutions like SADA, ISOFOTON and SUBAH. Others want you to address the institutional weaknesses in the Attorney Generals Department and the lack of willingness to peruse corrupt cases.
It is more than half way through December 2014, and while monies in excess of ¢300 million had illegally been paid under dubious circumstances; the country is yet to retrieve almost GHS285.5million left. The scant information on the prosecution of 300 people will not allow Ghanaians to determine whether they are low or high profile corruption cases. But, prosecuting tiny acts of corruption to the neglect of the several high profile corruption cases in your government which have oscillated the nation in recent times can only be described as shameful.
I would suggest that, in view of the current outrage of scandals in the country within your first term, there’s no argument that you will be a one- term president but we (Ghanaians) pray you call- back all our monies either mismanaged or stolen before you are shown the red card in the 2016 elections.
Mr President, “me nam na me tete,me tete” that the government you lead claims to be “social democrats” without any successful social program to boast of, rather collapsing almost all the social initiatives by the liberal conservatives. Count them, The School Feeding Programme, The National Youth Employment, Nurses and teacher trainee’s allowances are all in dismay.
More so, it is upsetting to understand, the common sense in the urgency of airlifting three million cedis to Brazil whilst urgent statutory payments to fund our NHIS, etc are in arrears, pregnant women and children are sometimes turned away from hospitals for government’s failure to pay NHIS arrears. Sir, you have two more years and I believe Ghana can deliver. I am not going to write without giving a clue on how in this twenty first century, our country, Ghana, can rise. It needs a collective effort and aspiration of citizens to help Ghana rise.
The ideas I have, the business friendly environment a government creates and the jobs these businesses create for the populace especially the youth, coupled with investors’ confidence, Ghana can accelerate the prosperity we all aspire for. Aspiration is the engine of progress. Nations rise when they allow their citizens to rise. In this world where brains matter more, where technologies shape our lives, where no-one is owed a living, the most powerful natural resource we have is the citizens.
Not just parliamentarians, government officials, the scientists, the entrepreneurs, the engineers not just the teachers, the parents, the nurses but all our people: including the poorest, those who have never had a job, never had a chance, never had hope. Nelson Mandela once said “overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of Justice .It is the protection of the fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life”. While poverty persists, there is no true freedom, and I believe inaction to lift our people out of poverty in Ghana is a crime against humanity.
That’s why my mission for this write-up is to help you Mr President build an aspired nation to unleash and unlock the promise in all our people. To help our people rise, we need an economy that creates good jobs. We need businesses, of every size, in every type of industry, in every part of Ghana – investing and taking people on.
To get Ghana on the rise we need a whole new economy, more enterprising and more aspiring On 7/12/2012 and 8/12/2012, we stood in long queues under a scotching sun to vote for you and your team based on your promises, we trusted that at least, you can solve the country’s basic problems and build the aspirations of ordinary Ghanaians. We trusted that your government policies could unleash and unlock the promise in all our people. In fact your administration has had the best of resources any government in the fourth republic would ever dream of, to unleash and unlock the promise in all our people. It is difficult to comprehend why your team has performed so poorly in the lights of all these numerous resources.
Having failed in most of your promises and considering that Ghanaians and businesses are living and working in darkness, the fact that over 80% of Ghanaians perceive public officials as corrupt and you (Mr President) does not appear to be trustworthy not least in the economy.
Further, considering the unfriendly environment businesses are operating and the lack of jobs at least for youth, ballooning of Ghana’s national debt, reducing governance to borrowing, tax increases and high petrol charges at least at the time when the world market price of oil is falling. I think your Christmas message offers a good opportunity for an unqualified apology to comfort Ghanaians on the state of affairs in our beloved Ghana.
Make no mistake, “sorry” is an integral part of our democracy that can give hope to millions up and down the country, at least with the expectation that acknowledging your failures, you can make improvement in your remaining two years.
Source: Da Costa Aboagye - Email: [email protected]
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