Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Where is your Policy Statement, Akufo-Addo?

Thursday, September 1, 2011
In the announcement preceding the maiden annual “Liberty Lectures” instituted by the Danquah Institute on May 31 to honour the founders of the Aborigines Right Protection Society, the organizers made it clear that the principal speaker, Nana Akufo-Addo (Presidential Candidate of the NPP), would give a lecture  to announce his MAJOR policy statement.
Many of us braced ourselves up for what we expected to be a major happening to give us a sneak peek into how the NPP intends to make a break with past in its agenda for managing the affairs of the country. We anticipated much food-for-thought and readied ourselves for what we hoped would provide the substance to raise the discourse on national issues to a higher level.
The event has come to pass but—need I say it as it is? It didn’t yield what we expected and can best be written off as one of those exercises in fault-finding, not anything new to enthuse over. It didn’t give us what we expected would be a MAJOR policy statement. We didn’t get anything substantial to engage our attention, only the distracting barrage of criticisms to irritate us.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Zimbabwe expels Libyan Ambassador and dares the devil

Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe is in his no-nonsense mood again. His government has just taken an action that is not only daring in its nature but also antagonistic in its impact. It may qualify as eccentric too.
While many countries worldwide (including 20 African countries) have so far recognized the Libyan rebel’s National Transitional Council (NTC) as the legitimate governing body of Libya, Zimbabwe has chosen to reinforce its refusal to go with the grain by taking an unprecedented action to expel Libya’s ambassador (Taher Elmagrahi) from the country.

Ghana is not worth dying for, but……

Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Echoes of the controversy surrounding the Minister of Health’s letter terminating the appointment of Dr. Frimpong-Boateng as Head of the National Cardiothoracic Centre at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital are still ringing loud in our ears. 
Certainly, the Minister’s action has touched raw nerves, and the sharp public reaction to it reflects the extent to which passions have been inflamed.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Are Ghanaians really benefiting from THIS democracy? (Part III)

Sunday, August 28, 2011
I conclude my discussion of the fundamental problems that I consider to be an affront to Ghana’s democracy and why it is imperative that efforts be made to ensure that the democracy works in the best interest of the vast majority of Ghanaians whose sacrifices sustain the system.
Do we really have a “Government for the People”?
In a democracy, the electorate are the wielders of power. That’s why their franchise is guaranteed for them to vote periodically to choose those they want to govern them. It is their mandate that brings a government into being and empowers its functionaries to use the resources of the land for the public weal. Ideally, such a government must serve the interests of the people and not trample over them.

Are Ghanaians really benefiting from THIS democracy? (Part II)

Sunday, August 28, 2011
I now examine the workings of our democracy within the context of the expectation that a government of the people, by the people, and for the people will not fail to complement the efforts of the people toward nurturing the country’s democracy to cater for their interests. 
It is only then that the sacrifices being made by the people will be validated. Otherwise, they lose their value and turn out to be the basis for actions to undermine the democracy itself.

Are Ghanaians really benefiting from THIS democracy? (Part I)

Sunday, August 28, 2011
As the jockeying by activists of the various political parties for the electorate’s sympathy continues for the 2012 elections—and will intensify as we approach the peak vote-seeking season—we need to ponder some serious issues that agitate people’s minds as far as our politics is concerned.
A cursory observation of our political situation reveals much discontent among Ghanaians (home and abroad) at the continued deterioration of living standards, persistently high cost of utility/health/social services, economic stagnation, and moral decadence, which add to the bitter political rivalry between the NDC and NPP to create tension and make the situation in the country virtually unbearable. 
And all this is happening in a country that is richly endowed with human and natural resources, backed by a democratic system of governance that has been stable for 19 years now!

Friday, August 26, 2011

STX Housing Promise: The NDC’s Political Misfortune…

Saturday, August 27, 2011
Indications are clear that the STX housing project is a millstone hanging around the government’s neck. Consequently, it will be easier for the government to abandon it now than to stubbornly insist on pursuing it into a political doom. Either way, the government is in trouble; it can’t escape blame for failing to get the project carried out and will pay dearly for its lethargy.
Its lopsided approach to this project is a clear demonstration of the purposelessness in officialdom that irritates the citizens. It confirms fears that the government is not managing the affairs of state competently, which demoralizes the citizens, leaving them in the lurch to be oppressed by a sense of futility and despondency. Such a demoralized people cannot be galvanized for national development.

The African Union Says “No” to the Libyan Rebel Leadership

Friday, August 26, 2011
The African Union’s Peace and Security Council held an emergency meeting in Addis Ababa today and decided not to recognize the Libyan rebel leadership (National Transitional Council) as the legitimate government of Libya.
Instead, the AU has called for an immediate ceasefire and “an all-inclusive transitional government” in Libya that would take in members of Gaddafi’s administration.
This stance is not unexpected. It has long been rearing its head and any astute observer of the Libyan crisis and the clear-cut differences between the AU’s proposals for resolving it and NATO/NTC’s military campaign will not be surprised that it has finally dawned.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Ghana Government is Right!

Thursday, August 25, 2011
Dr. Emmanuel Kwesi Aning, a security analyst at the Kofi Annan International Peace-Keeping Training Centre, may be concerned about the proliferation of all manner of weapons on the continent as a result of the mayhem in Libya. He may also be concerned that retrieving such weapons will help curb any security threat.
But his condemnation of President Mills’ pronouncement concerning his government’s intention to monitor happenings in Libya before taking a definite stand is unjustified. Again, his claim that this pronouncement is a shirking of Ghana’s leadership role in Africa is unacceptable.

I strongly disagree with him, especially for claiming that “it is unfortunate that Ghana has decided to abandon its leadership role in ensuring the cache of weapons that have littered the streets of Libya are not used to destabilize the rest of Africa.” (Myjoyonline, August 25, 2011).

Friday, August 19, 2011

Why is the NDC always crying foul? (Part II)

Friday, August 19, 2011
Despite its rich political history, the NPP too has serious liabilities and isn’t as appealing as its activists would have the whole world believe. 
But it knows how to fight its political rivals, using all manner of strategies, some of which have made its opponents accuse it of infiltrating the Judiciary, Ghana Bar Association, civil service, the mass media, security services, and many other areas, including the private business sector, where its lackeys position themselves to serve its interests. 
Suspicion that they manipulate the situation to the NPP’s advantage seems to be why the NDC activists are apprehensive.

Why is the NDC always crying foul? (Part I)

Friday, August 19, 2011
For many years now, activists of the NDC have pointed accusing fingers at all manner of people and organizations as being against the party and aligning with their arch-rivals (the NPP) to ditch it.
The latest in the series of such accusations has come from Felix Ofosu Kwakye, a member of the communications team of the NDC. He said on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen programme on Wednesday August 17, 2011, that IMANI Ghana, CDD, IEA, and other policy think tanks in the country are allies of the NPP and that they are set to prosecute an agenda to discredit and run down the Mills-led administration ahead of the 2012 elections.

When Ras Mubarak becomes the Prodigal Son…

Friday, August 19, 2011
I recall part of the testimonial that my former Assistant Headmaster wrote for one of my former classmates: “An incorrigible character. His employer may employ him at his own risk for further study of his character before giving him a permanent employment.” Very frightening, right?
If Ghana politics—which is still full of nonsense—were to involve the issuance of testimonials, I am quite certain that some politicians can’t avoid being given something of the sort. It may be the wake-up call that they need to realize that doing politics involves more than seeking personal self-fulfillment. I am tempted by something that has just happened to once again put our politicians on the spot.  

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

What is the Institute of Economic Affairs afraid of?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011
The wordy warfare between the Ghana News Agency (GNA) and the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) over the GNA’s news report (“IEA slams NPP for abuse of incumbency in Election 2008” filed on Sunday, August 14, 2011) could have been avoided had the IEA behaved responsibly. 
But it didn’t; hence, the intensification of the verbal tug-of-war that has spilled over and added fuel to the NDC-NPP rivalry.
The IEA’s conduct in this matter calls attention to one major problem that continues to frustrate genuine efforts by well-intentioned journalists to do their legitimate duties as members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Trojan Horse for the Asomdwehene: Hoodoo!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011
In choosing to look beyond material wealth and for disregarding personal property-grabbing as the objective for being in office, President J.E.A. Mills has put himself in a class of his own. 
Since entering office, he has not collected per diem allowances while on official trips, putting to shame all others before him (or in his government) who have allowed self-acquisitiveness to dominate their political lives. 
Many a Ghanaian politician who sees politics as a goldmine that provides the panacea to personal economic problems will not envy him, though.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The race to the Presidency: Matters arising

Monday, August 8, 2011
It is imperative that we don’t fail to scrutinize the character traits of those seeking leadership positions in our country. We do so at our own risk because if we allow our political interests to cloud our judgement and just accept them on the surface and install them in office, they will not provide the impetus that we need to move our country forward.
I say so with a guarded impression, created by the current barrage of criticisms being levelled against President Mills’ leadership style. Indeed, no day passes by without someone openly condemning him for not living up to expectation. 
Some even perceive him as weak, incompetent, malleable, unfocused, timid, and not in control of his government. These are serious allegations that in one way or the other may also account for the internal problems facing the NDC. Invariably, it is the country and its citizens that suffer!

Friday, August 5, 2011

If Rawlings smoked WEE and became Ghana’s President…

Friday, August 5, 2011
… Does it follow that the NPP’s Nana Akufo-Addo too can do so, shrug off the allegation of drug pushing, and become Ghana’s President as suggested by his followers?
As the exchanges intensify on allegations that the NPP’s Akufo-Addo is a drug pusher, some of his supporters have advanced puerile arguments to suggest that even former President Rawlings also smoked marijuana (wee) but succeeded in becoming Ghana’s President. Thus, the stigmatization of their Presidential Candidate on that score won’t have any negative effect on his Presidential ambitions.

Libya: The real humanitarian problem is around the corner

Friday, August 5, 2011
Indeed, the fratricidal war in Libya is heading toward a nasty point, thanks to NATO’s role in escalating a purely political problem to what it has been since March 19 when the International Coalition inserted itself into the Libyan conflict with the wrong solution tied to their military armaments to be dropped on Libya. The military campaign isn’t solving any problem; instead, it is worsening an existing one.
It is now clear that but for NATO’s intransigence and the wrong-headedness of the political leaders of the so-called Libya Contact Group (especially those of the United States, France, and Britain), better measures proposed by peace-loving people would have been enforced to end the conflict.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Nobody except Akufo-Addo can redeem Akufo-Addo

Thursday, August 4, 2011
Despite the clear threat that the NPP’s Presidential Candidate (Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo) has issued to take legal action against anybody insinuating that he is a drug addict; despite the re-issuance of that threat by his legal team; and despite vigorous attempts by some NPP functionaries to deny the persistent allegation against  him, nothing positive seems to be forthcoming. The air is still choked with the allegation that Akufo-Addo is a drug (cocaine or marijuana) pusher, which dents his image.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Hosni Mubarak’s Fate: A Lesson for African Politicians (Part II)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Many of the African countries have been plagued with leaders who are well versed in manipulating the system to serve their own political and economic interests. Such rulers aggressively undermine the system to acquire so much material wealth that they virtually become tin-gods.
As they seek to settle themselves in comfortable positions of strength, they work hard to stifle opposition and, in so doing, end up hounding away those who would otherwise have been better problem solvers. These politicians are in office to acquire wealth by hook or crook rather than solving the problems that feature in their glib, rooftop political rhetoric.

Hosni Mubarak’s Fate: A Lesson for African Politicians (Part I)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011
The trial of Egypt’s former President, Hosni Mubarak, began today in a court located in the Police Academy in Cairo. On the whole, the trial itself doesn’t evoke any extra-ordinary feeling. It is a matter-of-course, considering what Mr. Mubarak’s opponents had demanded to be done to him and all others fingered as part of the problems that necessitated the January uprising against Mr. Mubarak’s rule.
The 83-year-old Mubarak is being tried with his sons, ex-Interior Minister Habib al-Adly, and six other former officials. He is charged with corruption and ordering the killing of protesters when the uprising against his rule erupted in January, forcing him out of office on February 11. The charge of ordering the killing of protesters carries the death penalty.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The dirty politics of development projects hurts

Monday, August 1, 2011
A group within the National Democratic Congress in the Volta Region is reported to be angry at “the level of depravity, neglect and under development in the region.” The leader for the Youth for Action Group, Alhaji Bello, told Joy News’ Bernard Saibu that the region has been so neglected he wonders if the Volta Region is part of Ghana. He claimed the citizens have become so disillusioned and have sworn not to vote in the 2012 general elections.
But the Regional Minister, Joseph Amenorwode, has dismissed the comments and challenged the credibility of such a group. According to him, the region has about 200 development projects, including the completion of Akatsi-Vedze road and many others.