Sunday, 28 September 2014

The NDC & NPP Must Stop Kowtowing To Vested Interests

Having both been in power for at least a minimum of two consecutive 4-year terms each, what conclusions, if any, can one draw from the years during which the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the party that formed its predecessor regime,  the New Patriotic Party (NPP), have ruled Ghana?

For a start, it is obvious that the need for funds to run them, makes both parties beholden to  vested interests - yet the sole purpose of vested interests in our country, as we all know, is to participate in the brutal gang-rape of Mother Ghana.

It is also a fact that buying off those who seek to protect the national interest, at any given point in time, is what enables vested interests in our country to achieve their goals - and maintain their iron-grip on our nation.

 That is how come the same people who virtually crippled Intercity STC during the Kufuor-era, by foisting untested and unsuitable Chinese-made FAW buses on the company, are repeating their super-lucrative trick - this time lumbering Metro Mass Transit Limited with Chinese buses: at the outrageous profiteering-price of a staggering US$200,000 each.

The many logic-defying laws passed by Ghana's Parliament over the years - laws clearly detrimental to our country - also  remain eloquent testimony to the power of vested interests in Ghana.

The sale and purchase agreement for VALCO to a non-existent joint-venture, International Aluminium Partners (IAP), during the NPP's period in office is another egregious example of the shenanigans of vested interests.

In that instance, the Norwegian company Norske Hydro and the Brazilian firm VALE, both strenously denied ever agreeing to purchase VALCO in a joint-venture. Yet vested interests somehow succeeded in having that fraudulent agreement railroaded through Parliament,

Clearly, in order to rid political parties of the baleful influence of vested interests, there is a need to lift the veil of secrecy surrounding their sources of funding.

As long as both major parties are secretive about their sources of funding,  they will continue to remain vulnerable to the  blandishments of the powerful few with greedy ambitions - who actively participate in the rip-off of our nation - and  corruption will consequently remain endemic in Ghana.

That is why those ultimately responsible for the GYEEDA, LESDEP, SUBAH and SADA scandals appear to be beyond the reach of the laws of our country - whiles smaller fish are used as scapegoats by being tried: as a sop to public opinion and to placate critics of the government.

Let the men and women of goodwill in all the  political parties in our country address this central problem of our nation's politics.

It is a problem that must be confronted if we are to rid Ghana of high-level corruption. As things stand, it does not matter whether it is the NDC or NPP that is in power: alas, corruption will continue to hold back our nation from moving forward - and living conditions for ordinary people will continue to remain harsh and unbearable.

Perhaps the question we must pose is: if, after lengthy periods in power, there has been precious little improvement in the lives of ordinary people in Ghana - particularly those from the base-of-the-pyramid demographic -  what does that tell us about the ability of the NDC and NPP to resolve the problems that confront ordinary Ghanaians?

 It is time ordinary people understood that if the two biggest political parties in Ghana continue to be beholden to vested interests, they will continue to pay lip service to ensuring the well-being of our nation and promoting the welfare of ordinary people - and focus instead on serving their selfish and ruthless paymasters.

It is the power exercised by vested interests, for example, that is responsible for Ghana signing the world's worst oil agreements with foreign oil companies.

The painful truth is that if we are to see an improvement in living conditions for ordinary people in Ghana, the NDC and NPP must be forced to stop kowtowing to vested interests. Failing that, perhaps Ghanaians would be wise to turn to other political  parties instead, in the December 2016 presidential and parliamentary elections. A word to the wise....

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