Anger and frustration are setting in, with famous entertainment stars in Ghana voicing their feelings about the perennial lights off that is crippling the economy.
Popular actress Yvonne Nelson said the assurances given by the John Mahama-led NDC government to fix the perennial electricity crisis were all ‘lies’.
She took to social media platform, Twitter, yesterday to vent her frustration over the government’s inability to solve the power crisis known in local parlance as dumsor.
Later, she was interviewed by international broadcaster BBC in relation to a Twitter campaign trending with the hashtag #DumsorMustStop, apparently aimed at putting pressure on the government to end the dumsor nightmare which is fast crippling the economy amid massive job lay-offs.
The award-winning Ghanaian actress said on BBC World Service Radio that ‘the government actually promised they were sending power barges to help the situation. They told us it was coming last month [April] and today is 1st May. So it is pretty much full of lies. They keep telling us lies and we are not seeing any results.’
She said for instance that students ‘writing exams can’t learn because of dumsor. Businesses are closing down, companies are laying off workers. We can’t function as a nation. We need electricity to function. They are just telling lies and taking Ghanaians for granted,’ she said.
The #DumsorMustStop Campaign received massive support from Ghanaians on the social media platform with celebrities like top rapper Sarkodie, actress Lydia Forson among others joining in.
Sarkodie said ‘Dumsor must stop’ while Lydia Forson said ‘I stopped writing about President Mahama when he didn’t respond to my last letter.’
Dumsor is real
Earlier, Yvonne had said on her Twitter page: ‘It’s so sad; this dumsor crap is here to stay! They will just not tell the people the truth! They’ll wait and let us get used to it.’
Yvonne continued: ‘The minute people in government start investing in generators (that) will be the end of Ghana. They will make sure the dumsor continues forever and ever.’
The actress stated further: ‘I can never get used to it! How does our economy grow? Businesses are closing! Kids in school are failing! What a shame.
‘The President doesn’t even see our tweets to him because the page is obviously not run by him. What’s the use, if you don’t handle your account?
‘Ghanaians, wake up! We seriously don’t deserve this! How will our country be productive? We can’t function! It’s sooo wrong!’ Yvonne concluded.
For his part, award-winning Ghanaian rapper Sarkodie, known in real life as Michael Owusu Addo, described Ghana’s leaders as selfish.
The rapper expressed his frustrations on Twitter about living conditions in Ghana and how the country’s leaders were not paying attention to the needs of the citizenry.
He wrote, ‘It ain’t easy being a president and I don’t think I can but if you choose to, you can’t be selfish… It is only for the selfless #Leader.’
‘Watch and listen to them carefully and see if they care about us,’ he added.
According to him, it was amazing how Ghanaians survive under such harsh economic situations only to forget about the challenges they went through when it is time for elections.
‘It’s a miracle how we survive down here you know, guess dumsor will pause when election is closer right?? Smh and [my] people will fall for it!!! After all it’s caused,’ he said.
The ‘Inflation’ rapper believed that voting was only an exercise to select a leader who maltreats the citizenry.
‘What voting means down here: choosing who’s best to maltreat me….simple, see how we scream when our lights are back on, like they’re doing us a favour smh…And we think we have lights???’ he stated.
‘We [are being] treated like kids down here ma people and it’s sad…They succeeded in programming our minds not to focus on important issues, all these fake political talk shows with people battling on who speaks better English and not sharing ideas on the way forward,’ Sarkodie added.
Perhaps, the celebrity who received harsh criticisms from the public was actor John Dumelo when he asked Ghanaians to have patience with President Mahama because ‘Rome was not built in a day.’
He was quoted by a radio station as saying last Thursday that ‘We should just give him [Mahama] time to solve the problems. The problems are there but it’s four years; Rome wasn’t built in a day… and if after 2016 the problems are not solved, then we know what to do.
‘But I think a lot of people are putting pressure on him and it’s not as if he doesn’t want to solve the problems; he does, so we should just give him time,’ he added.
He later backtracked by claiming that he was ‘misread’ and ‘misconstrued’.
Dumelo, who appeared in Mahama-for-President campaigns in 2012 said, ‘I feel what is going on in the country. I have had to lay off 20 of my workers and close down two of my companies because of the economic crises. I feel the workers’ pain. You think I’m happy laying off my workers? You think I’m happy running a company at a loss? I’m not.’
By William Yaw Owusu
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