Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah Arthur’s decision to adhere to the counsel of his unnamed friend at the University of Ghana, Legon, and desist from responding to Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia’s lecture continues to resonate in political and media circles. Indeed, others outside the foregone have also posed sound questions about why the vice president would deny Dr. Bawumia lessons on basic economics which his response would have contained, given his initial reaction to the lecture.
By describing Dr. Bawumia as a novice in basic economics, it presupposes that the former Deputy Governor of the country’s apex bank requires lessons in demand and supply, the accompanying curves and the important equilibrium between the two market forces.
If Dr. Bawumia does not understand the foregone – the basis of the complex and scientific subject of economics – he must be a magician to be able to talk about macro-economics and to have been credited with all the footnotes in his Curriculum Vitae which stand him apart from others wearing the tag of economists.
While Koku Anyidoho of the ruling party regards Dr. Bawumia as a discredited personality, we wonder what he would say about the vice president, whose chickening out of responding to the prophesising economist has evoked unsavoury reactions from Ghanaians.
Be it as it may, we are saddened at the inability of Ghanaians to relish the contest of wits which a Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur would have afforded the citizens of this country, had he joined Dr. Bawumia in the ring of intellectualism.
When such debates take place bereft of trivialities such as insults and personalization, they bring out the best in us as a people and thus help in shaping our nation.
We have been denied a presidential debate and now an alternative as the vice president succumbs to the entreaties of his non-existent friend not to respond to the disclosures of Dr. Bawumia.
Debates, as intellectual exercises, are not bad at all in every setting, more so when the country is embroiled in fiscal challenges occasioned by nuisance taxes.
We therefore, take exception to the vice president’s decision, which we regard as a subtle means of chickening out of a contest of wits.
We need as a people to hear the alternative presentation so we can be better informed.
We demur on the position that Dr. Bawumia was playing politics, according to the vice president’s imaginary friend.
Is there any thin line between politics and economics at all?
Vice President Amissah-Arthur must forever shut up, now that he has decided to take the counsel of his friend we would never know, hook, line and sinker.