Saturday, 25 April 2015

Why Paa Kwesi Nduom Will Be The Best Candidate To Elect As President Of Ghana In 2016

There are moments in the histories of all peoples, when the critical interventions of particular individuals,  in their nations' affairs, changes the destinies of those countries.

This truism is something that today's younger generation of Ghanaians need to reflect on as the 2016 presidential  election approaches.

They must make a choice that will ensure a better future for all Ghanaians - in that all-important election that will be a defining moment in our history.

It is time younger generation Ghanaians embraced a new kind of politics, based on what will improve the well-being of our nation, and promote the welfare of all its people.

Young Ghanaians must reject the old-fashioned Kokofu-football-politricks - the sole aim of which is the  enrichment of a powerful, selfish and greedy few.

Perhaps they ought to take their inspiration from a similar moment in the history of the  Gold Coast - when prominent businessman George Alfred Grant felt that the country was going downhill and needed rescuing.

The history of the Gold Coast would have been totally different, if George Alfred Grant had not been born when he was, and if he had not become an incredibly wealthy and successful timber merchant.

Grant had the money - and was prepared to use it to help free his people from colonial bondage.

Indeed, so successful was the timber export business of Paa Grant, as he was popularly known, that his company, George Grant and Company Limited,  opened offices in London, Liverpool and Hamburg, between 1920 and 1922.

He bought a German minesweeper that he had converted into a freighter that traded along the coast of the Gold Coast - its itinerary included stops at Half-Assini, Axim, Sekondi and Cape Coast . It was crewed by German and English sailors.

He chartered ships to export his logs to timber companies that he dealt with in the UK, Europe and the US.

So, more than most, amongst his contemporaries, he clearly understood how the Gold Coast was being literally drained of its wealth - as timber, gold, bauxite, manganese, diamonds etc, etc. were exported from the Gold Coast by the shipload to the UK, Europe and America, by British and European companies.

Paa Grant knew that in order to prosper the people of the Gold Coast had to rid themselves of the yoke of colonialism - so that the wealth that was being shipped out of the country would remain here: and be used instead  to develop the country for the benefit of all its people.

To achieve that end, he decided to use his considerable wealth to fund the fight for independence for the Gold Coast, from the British occupiers of our country. The idea for establishing the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) was his - and all its funding came from him.

 The £100 sent to Kwame Nkrumah to pay for his passage from the UK back to the Gold Coast to become the UGCC's general secretary was from Paa Grant - and for the first few months after his arrival home it was in Grant's Sekondi house that Nkrumah stayed.

Today, we have also reached a point in our post-independence history, when in order to prosper as a people, we must rid our nation of the baleful influence of the vested interests, which corrupt Ghanaian politicians and public officials.

For the vested interests that dominate our country from the shadows, it is important that Ghana continues to remain a Byzantine developing nation,  in which corruption is endemic - because they prosper mightily from the maintenance of our corrupt and opaque system.

Alas, as currently structured, both of the two main political parties in Ghana that dominate our nation's politics, the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the largest opposition party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP), are beholden to those selfsame vested interests that prosper from our corrupt system - and want it kept in place by hook or by crook for that reason.

An egregious example is the ferociousness and tenacity of the destination inspection companies - which are siphoning off billions of Ghana cedis in taxes annually that could be used to develop Ghana: and all of which maintain close links with bigwigs in both major  parties.

Yet, the work they are paid obscene amounts to do at Ghana's ports and other entry points, could easily be transferred to the Customs, Excise and Preventative Service (CEPS) of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) - and done efficiently by  CEPS officials.

Unless and until the NDC and NPP undergo reforms that will make them transparent political parties that publicly publish all their sources of funding, and whose constitutions make it mandatory for all their elected officials  to publicly publish their  assets, and those of their spouses, when their parties win power and form  governments,  Ghanaians must reject both of them at the polls in 2016.

We cannot have the leaders of political parties, which are in bed with the very vested interests whose unparalleled greed is ruining our nation, ruling our homeland Ghana at this stage of our history.

Measured by that yardstick, the Progressive People's Party's (PPP) founder,  Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom, would be the most suitable leader for Ghanaians to elect as president in 2016.

It will be a national tragedy for the younger generation if that does not happen - for their country would have missed the only opportunity open to it thus far, since Nkrumah's overthrow in 1966, to free itself from the iron-grip of the vested interests holding it back, and be in a position to move forward once again.

Nduom is the only politician in Ghana today, who has the moral authority to stand up to the powerful few, whose greedy ambitions is slowly destroying the moral fabric of Ghanaian society - by the example he set (by being transparent about his personal finances and that of his party) during the campaign for the 2012 presidential election.

As things currently stand, it is only Nduom who can rid Ghana of the malevolence of the vested interests, which are sucking the very lifeblood out of our nation - because he and his  party  do not depend on the ill-gotten wealth of vested interests in Ghana to survive.

Like Paa Grant of blessed memory, Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom is using his considerable wealth to pursue a radical agenda, which will make Ghanaian businesses really benefit from our expanding national economy.

One doubts very much if any foreign company will be able to win a contract in Ghana without a Ghanaian partner under an Nduom presidency. It is such investment policies that have empowered China's private sector - and will help grow Ghana's private-sector too.

And it is Ghanaian businesses, large and small, which will create the wealth that will enable our country to be transformed, into an African equivalent, of the egalitarian societies of Scandinavia.

In the situation we currently find ourselves, as a people, Ghana actually needs a leader who knows how to create wealth and jobs - and understands clearly how the governance architecture of  an enabling environment (low-taxes, low interest rates, business-friendly policies and pro-business initiatives, etc., etc.) for wealth-creation should be structured: practically and theoretically.

Younger generation Ghanaians must not gamble with their collective future - by listening to the beguiling promises of those political parties and politicians who are in bed with the very vested interests draining our nation of its wealth.

With the best will in the world - and decent individuals though they both are - neither the ruling NDC's President John Dramani Mahama, nor the opposition NPP's Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo, can rid Ghana of the vested interests destroying Ghana. Not when their two parties are beholden to those selfsame vested interests.

For that reason, in the 2016 presidential election, Ghana's future will be best served, if Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom is elected president of the Republic of Ghana. He has a radical agenda to transform Ghana.

A vote for Nduom, for example, is a vote to make grassroots people control their own destinies at the district level - by electing their own district chief executives (DCE).

Having began his career in politics at the district level,  by becoming an assemblyman, Nduom knows why electing DCEs is so important for development at the grassroots level, from a practical standpoint.

That is why he is committed to the passage of legislation to make the election of DCEs possible when he becomes president -  a move that will deepen the roots of Ghanaian democracy yet further.

Ghana definitely needs an honest leader who is totally open about his own health status at all material times, is transparent about his private fortune, and is also transparent about the sources of his party's funding. Only such a Ghanaian political  leader can remain incorruptible whiles in office.

Above all, amongst all the leading politicians vying for the presidency in 2016, it is only an Nduom presidency that will secure the future of Ghanaian business - which will provide the wealth to transform Ghana into a prosperous society: for the benefit of all its people.

As a self-made man, who built a fortune from clever strategising and hard work, he knows exactly what policies will benefit Ghanaian businesses: and intends to use the power of the Ghanaian nation-state for precisely that purpose.

In a nation with unacceptably high levels of youth unemployment (and the attendant dangers to society that that  entails), and in which the ignorance of politicians is resulting in policies that are killing businesses in droves, his business acumen and ability to create meaningful jobs, above all, are two justifiable reasons why Ghanaians will be better off electing Paa Kwesi Nduom as president in 2016.

Finally, unlike his two main opponents, President Mahama and Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo,  Nduom does not come from a privileged background - and knows what it is actually  like to have to struggle in life. That will enable him to empathise with the plight of the disadvantaged in Ghanaian society -  and motivate him to create opportunities for them to lift themselves out of poverty:  by their own bootstraps. Perfect.

Clued-on younger generation Ghanaians would be wise to volunteer to help elect Paa Kwesi Nduom as president of Ghana in 2016. He will secure Ghana's future - and their own individual futures too: both good enough reasons to vote for Nduom in the 2016 presidential election.







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