Polarization Stifles Development-Prof Akosa

Professor Agyeman Badu Akosa, the Executive Director of Healthy Ghana, a non- governmental organization, said on Tuesday that the country had a highly polarised political system which had been a source of civil wars in many countries.

He said no country could develop under a polarised political system and that over the last two decades, divisions based on partisan affiliation had grown drastically on issues of economic growth, development and the role of government.

Prof Akosa said this at the 47th J.B. Danquah Memorial Lectures in Accra under the theme “Ghana’s Polarised Political Terrain” organized by the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences.

He said the polarisation had got out of hand when in certain markets sellers of perishable goods would not to sell to anybody who they suspected to be from the opposite side of the political space.

“In certain parts of the north tribes that have coexisted for years find themselves on the opposite sides of the political divide and have created a no-go-area for their citizenry and even musicians who step on the campaign trail found themselves alienated or ostracized” he said.

He said the land mass of the present day were made up of a collection of tribes that had been brought together in 1901 in order to build a nation state and that the old tensions and suspicions from tribal wars and atrocities still existed and created avenues for polarisation.

Prof Akosa said Ghana’s political history had not been adequately published adding that there was a gap, unexplained and disjointed facts in the published literature.

He said polarisation of the political system dated back to the era of the United Gold Coast Convention, the National Liberation Movement and the Convention People’s Party which were characterized by acrimony and tribalism and resulted in conflicts and coups.