In the grand scheme of things, we choose to partake in the adult universal suffrage in anticipation that our lives would be transformed positively by the elected government.
The way forward then, is to vote according to the prevailing socio-economic standards of living and not through the whims and caprices of some selfish and unprincipled politicians, who are bent on manipulating the unsuspecting voters.
Obviously, the unbridled devoted attachment is not the way forward; we should rather look beyond the narrow political lines and assess the bigger picture. That is by thinking about the way we can develop exponentially; which political party can take us forward as a nation.
That being said, it is somewhat spurious for anyone to argue that all politicians are the same when in power and therefore there is no need to change from one to another.
With all due respect with no attached condescension whatsoever, such a notion is farfetched, just to say the least. Indeed, politicians have different levels of temperament, competence, experience, knowledge, skills and abilities. So they are never the same, so to speak.
Take, for example, Ghana’s economy under former President Mahama (3.4% growth and 15.4% inflation) cannot match President Akufo-Addo’s record before the insidious coronavirus (8.6% growth and 9.1% inflation).
If for nothing at all, Ghana’s economy received thumbs-up from the likes of the Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Ms Christine Lagarde, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, and other reputable international organisations, who had earlier commended the Akufo-Addo’s government on its excellent economic performance.
In 2017, the Bloomberg News, for example, predicted Ghana to become “Africa’s fastest-growing economy in 2018 “and Ghana was proclaimed “Star of Africa in 2018 Lenders’ Economic Forecasts”.
In reporting on the same fiscal policy achievements, Le Monde pointed out that “Ghana’s economic success is not just as the result of an oil-driven boom, but is also due to prudent economic management, an entrepreneurial population, the role of traditional leaders, and good governance.”
The next on the list of observers on Ghana’s auspicious economy is the Nigerian scholar, who gave a presentation at the NDC’s forum, in which he emphasised Ghana’s thriving economic growth under the Akufo-Addo’s administration.
The Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Ms Christine Lagarde’s observed that the Ghanaian economy, before the pernicious coronavirus, was in a better place than it was in the previous years under the John Dramani Mahama’s administration.
Ms Lagarde opined that the Akufo-Addo’s government made important gains towards macroeconomic stability, including inflation, which declined to a single digit and within the Bank of Ghana’s (BoG’s) tolerance band; buoyant growth, averaging about five per cent between 2015 and 2018, and, over six per cent in 2017-18) and a primary surplus in 2017 for the first time in 15 years (IMF 2018).
The Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, observed: “Ghana met the targets for halving extreme poverty and halving the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water, and it achieved the goals relating to universal primary education and gender parity in primary school.
The seasoned journalist, Kweku Baako Jnr hit the nail on the head when he pointed out on Joy FM’s political show (News File) on Saturday 6/04/2019 that the NPP administration led by President Akufo-Addo has performed exceedingly better than the erstwhile NDC government led by former President Mahama.
Juxtaposing the state of the economy in first two years of the two administrations, Kweku Baako Jnr aptly concluded that the economy is in a better shape under the Akufo-Addo’s administration than it was under Mahama’s administration.
Baako Jnr, therefore, asserted poignantly: “There’s no doubt that the Akufo-Addo administration has done far better than the Mahama administration; it’s as simple as that, the figures and the records support it (myjoyonline.com, 6/04/2019).”
Some of us, as a matter of principle, cannot end our arousing disgust anyhow and anytime soon over the erstwhile NDC government’s irreversible incompetence and the corrupt practices which destabilised Ghana’s macroeconomic indicators.
Whilst we do not want to buy the widely held assertion that politics is a dirty game, one would not be far from right to suggest that the political terrain is full of inveterate propagandists and manipulating geezers.
Of course, roguish politicians are not limited to Africa, it is a global phenomenon, as a matter of fact.
However, in our humble opinion, it is our part of the world (Africa), where political gimmickry and vague rhetoric are so prevalent.
Perhaps, this is so because we have greater number of unlettered folks, many of whom cannot choose between tricksters and morally upstanding politicians.
Of course, the opposition is obliged to put the incumbent government on its toes. But does the opposition NDC have to grumble and criticise for criticising sake?
In fact, one cannot help but to laugh off the minority NDC’s renewed zeal to expose and prevent perceived incompetence and corruption in the NPP administration.
Let us be honest, if they were that good at detecting and preventing sleazes and corruption, how on earth did they go to sleep over the scandalous corruption cases involving the infamous Bus Branding, Brazil World Cup, the Ford Expedition vehicle, GYEEDA, AZONTABA, SADA, SUBAH, the purported $300million debt incurred on the faded STS housing deal, the dubious Embraer 190 Aircrafts and hanger for the Ghana Armed Forces and over a US$100 million oil revenue loss between 2011 and 2013 as reported by the Public Interest& Accountability Committee?
Perhaps, the NDC apologists are trying their level best to convince their aggrieved supporters of their consuming desire to recapture power in 2020.
Kweku Baako Jnr was absolutely right when he once stressed that the minority NDC operatives were seeking to ‘internationalise their incompetence’.
Isn’t it somewhat ironic that the opposition NDC operatives have soon found their voices and squalling and scolding at the roof top about alleged sleazes and corruption?
To some of us, it is an illustrative case of ‘let us give a dog a bad name and hang it’. Obviously they are trying their level best to bring to the fore the non-existent sleazes and corruption. How pathetic?
It beggars belief that despite the unbridled corruption, the arrogance of power and the irrevocable incompetence by the erstwhile NDC administration which resulted in massive economic collapse, the NDC apologists, both home and abroad, would still have the moral authority to accuse others.
Whatever the case, that is the beauty of democracy. The minority NDC operatives are within their democratic right to whine and speak their piece and criticise the NPP administration as they see fit.
But that being said, the NDC communicators ought to exercise a great deal of circumspection and consider criticising constructively and put forward alternative policies and programmes.
Some of us have always held an unfailing conviction that governance is a serious business and as such it requires forward thinking, serious and committed group of people to bring about the needed progress.
However, it has not always been the case in Ghana’s democratic dispensation. The multi-party democracy has given birth to both purposeful and coarse political parties.
As a consequence, we have for a long time been relying on lousy economic managers who cannot see their backsides from their elbows and have only succeeded in sinking the economy deeper and deeper into the mire through corrupt practices.
In fact, we share the same sentiments of the reflective sceptics who argue vehemently that despite spending 27 years in government, the successive NDC governments have failed woefully to improve upon the socio-economic standards of living of Ghanaians.
The contending schools of thought have been arguing consistently that the successive NDC governments only managed to destabilise Ghana’s macroeconomic indicators through dreadful errors in decision-making.
Despite the unobjectionable facts and figures of favourable economic growth under Akufo-Addo’s administration, the NDC operatives are all over the place nagging, grumbling and censuring the NPP government for perceived slow pace in development in less than four years in office.
The fact however remains that if the officials of the erstwhile NDC government had not allegedly squandered the funds meant for various developmental projects, the NPP government would have enough funds at its disposal to undertake a lot of developmental projects.
So who says that the critics are not absolutely right for suggesting that if discerning Ghanaians had not graciously intervened by showing the dreadful economic managers (NDC) the exit through universal adult suffrage, the terrible errors in decision-making and the rampant corruption would have obliterated Ghana off the world map completely?
Given the circumstances, we can confidently deduce that discerning Ghanaians made the right decision on 7th December 2016 by electing the septuagenarian Nana Akufo-Addo and retiring the middle-aged John Dramani Mahama.
A large portion of Ghana’s scarce resources, regrettably, went down the drain due to the mismanagement and the rampant corruption perpetrated by the officials of the erstwhile Mahama administration.
There is admissible evidence of gargantuan bribery and corruption cases, including monies which were given to parasitic creatures who did not render any services towards the national development. Woyome and Akua Donkor come to mind.
Despite Mahama’s government abysmal performance, the loyalists NDC supporters would want discerning Ghanaians into believing that the erstwhile NDC government provided exceptional governance.
Truly, vague understanding of patriotism exists in the minds of many Ghanaians, who prefer needless praise singing to defending the national interests.
Based on the prudent governance and the current favourable economic outlook, we can confidently state that Ghana is heading towards the right direction under the able leadership of President Akufo-Addo.
We must, therefore, take solace in the fact that the Akufo-Addo’s government is tackling the erstwhile Mahama’s government economic mess head-on.
K. Badu, UK.