Ghana, Which Way To Go?
A poem I enjoyed very well under the tutelage of Mr Kwasi Subi of Wesley Education College, Kumasi during my training days as a teacher in the late 90s was the MESH by Kwesi Brew.
I knew Mr Subi loved that poem too. He told us the reason for his love for it. As short as the Poem is, he taught, it employs and unveils several literary devices that makes easy to teach with. The theme of the poem is LOVE. It underscores the power and effect of love in the face of difficulties, adversities, doubts and moments of indecision or indecisiveness.
We have come to the cross-roads
And I must either leave or come with you
I lingered over the choice
But in the darkness of my doubts
You lifted the lamp of love
And I saw in your face
The road that I should take.
Ghana’s politics is becoming interestingly a big challenge to the socio-economic advancement of the nation. Change, it does appear in Ghana politics to mean just replacing one regime with another but not necessarily a departure of sorts from the old ways of doing things into an unfettered realm where the greater and general good would supersede selfish and egoistic interests. It is a pity that none of the Parties that have led this nation from 1992 under the 4th Republican dispensation has been able to live up to their own individual manifesto or social contract.
What makes the situation even nauseating is the fact that, Presidents get elected on a Political Party’s manifesto and NOT his personal manifesto or promises yet, the very Party on whose patronage the President is elected has no slightest leverage over the conduct of the President while in Office, atleast within the Constitutional arrangement. Rather, the Party is at the mercy of the president in terms of how it conducts its affairs to suit the whims and caprice of the occupant of the most revered seat in the nation. Sadly, because of the thorny issue of political party funding, they become vulnerable to the handlers of State power and thus State Funds.
It is obvious that when a party is in power they have money to run their affairs at the expense of the State though it is often disputed. The history of our fourth republican politics lend credence to this claim more than anything else. In 1988 when the agitation for the return to Constitutional Rule had reached its crescendo the PNDC main actors were left with no option than to surrender to the will of the People and submit to International pressure against their wish. In the setting up of the National Commission for Democracy, they set into motion the process for a surreptitious surrender instead of a sincere and true handover from a brutal military dictatorship which no one was ready to tolerate any longer to a pure civilian rule.
Their cup despite full, they sought various ways to perpetuate themselves in power. Several organizations and institutions were established with State Funds to create what eventually became the Progressive Alliance consisting of the Democratic People’s Party, DPP, Every Ghanaian Living Everywhere, EGGLE, National Convention Party, NCP and the National Democratic Congress, NDC. After winning the 1992 Presidential elections amidst protestation and eventual boycott of the Parliamentary elections by all the parties in Ghana except those in the Alliance, all culminating into the subsequent publication of the STOLEN VERDICT, they further used State Power to entrench themselves in power.
This unfortunate deceptive return to civilian rule with all its negative arrangements have contributed largely to the present debacle of stagnation and fraud in our public life. State Officials and Political Office handlers are always devising ways and means to impoverish the Ghanaian in general all to their limited advantage. This quagmire has led many to lose faith in the promises made on political party platform. Doubts arise anytime some hope is offered in optimism. Cynicism welcomes any gesture at correcting the wrongs especially when it is coming from the ruling class.
It is in the face of all these that like in the MESH, I expect that someone would lift the lamp of love, hope, optimism, sincerity and thought backed with deeds. Ghana needs a new, refreshed, renewed, revived or rebranded face in our political landscape who would face the odds and give a different dimension to our whole perception of Politics and Politicians.
But the generality of the Ghanaian populace especially the voting populace must be ready to face up the challenge of discerning the right road to take. Yes the right message and messenger may be presented or offered. It may be so obvious and conspicuous yet it would take the bold decision of recognition to give meaning to it. Let us all pledge now to choose only ONE road in all matters – the road that leads to the wellbeing of ALL GHANAIANS and ‘NOT JUST MY SELFISH AMBITION’. If we so decide to know which road to take, we shall surely be putting Ghana on the pedestal that assures NEVER AGAIN, shall the negatives inherited from the return to multi-party democracy in 1992 continue to stay with us.