Friday, 19 August 2016

Nation-Building Is A Joint Effort That All Must Contribute To

''It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit."
                                                                 - U.S. President Harry S. Truman

It is such a pity that many Ghanaian politicians spend so much time arguing endlessly on the airwaves of television and FM radio stations about which political party ought to take the credit for being the original source of ideas underpinning all manner of policies that led to the implementation of sundry development projects.

It has led to the sabotaging of the nation-building effort by those  who find themselves in the political wilderness - so that those in power will have nothing much to show for their years in power: a nonsensical scorched earth political strategy detrimental to the well-being of Ghanaian society as a whole.

In any case, what exactly is the point of such pointless arguments - when political parties in the continent of Africa exist precisely for the purpose of formulating and carrying out beneficial policies that will transform societies across the continent into prosperous ones, when in power?

The question we should pose is: What is the nature of society that those who seek power in Ghana envision for our nation and all its people? And what are the policies they intend to pursue when elected to power that will lead to the coming into being of that particular envisioned society - and within what time-frame exactly will it come into being?

Above all, should those whose neo-liberal policies are responsible for the evolution of today's dog-eat-dog society in Ghana - that dysfunctional society in which so many are prepared to lie, swindle and even commit ritual murder on occasion, to enable them get to the top of the greasy pole, which we are now lumbered with - still be allowed to continue taking turns to govern our nation in perpetuity?

Today, incredibly, even casual labourers are being taxed -  just so that the many square-pegs-in-round-holes appointed to man top positions in the public sector can continue to live the life of Riley at their expense.

Instead of killing personal initiative in Ghana by piling on tax after tax on hardworking people merely to provide more opportunities for those who engage in egregious white collar crimes - such as siphoning taxpayers' money into private private pockets through rip-off public procurement deals - to grow super-rich at the nation's expense, why do politicians not rather think of more creative ways to fund Ghana's development through win-win public private partnerships (PPP) that do not call for the spending of any public money?

Instead of needless taxation merely to find money to develop a network of poorly constructed  roads that will only end up becoming pothole-ridden, for example, why not, at a time of global climate change, give Ghanaian entrepreneurs the opportunity to build and maintain a network of durable plastic roads, which will remain pothole-free throughout their extended lifespans?

Could they not be suitably icentivisied by being given the opportunity to collect fees for the use of tolled plastic roads by motorised vehicles for a period of 25 years, during which they would be required to maintain those roads in perfect condition: failing which they will face heavy fines and if need be have their PPPs abrogated?

In other words, let us back political parties and politicians whose vision is to transform Ghana into an African equivalent  of the egalitarian societies of Scandinavia - not by overburdening Ghanaians with endless taxes, but by offering Ghanaian entrepreneurs PPP opportunities, which will help bring into being an egalitarian and prosperous Ghana: in which all enjoy high living standards.

We must no longer tolerate living in an unjust and amoral society, dominated by a greedy and powerful few who constantly scheme to enable them end up owning  what justly ought to belong to all Ghanaians  (and therefore ought to benefit all of them equally too),  by exploiting our Byzantine system for that ignoble purpose.

That is what political parties in Ghana must focus on - not never-endingarguments about who originated an idea and therefore ought to take credit for it. Nation-building is a joint effort that all must contribute to, after all, is it not?

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