Monday, December 15, 2008

As the Week Opens in Accra: Ghanaians and their Pontification of Peace; The Necessity of a Third Political Force for Ghana in the CPP

Yeah, it has been a while. Although I have been alive and well, I have not made time to blog here. Ofcourse, we are approaching the end of the year and I intend to go out with a bang!;-)

First of all, let us just say that it is no news that Ghana pulled off its national elections well, to the extent that we now have a run-off scheduled for 28 december. I have a problem with the whole "peace" concept. I think Ghanaians pontificated over peace so excessively that it blinded them to the virtues of castigating some of the dynamics that characterised the NPP administration. The issues of cocaine and corruption were barely--if ever--touched on, save by the National Democratic Convention who naturally used it for political capital.

This is what I wrote in August 2006:

The Drug Menace
Like a scene right out of Hollywood, the drugs affair exploded into the consciousness of Ghanaians a few weeks ago when some drugs disappeared off a boat, MV Benjamin, when it docked at Tema. Unlike in the 1995 gangster thriller, The Usual Suspects, where $91 million of cocaine in a boat, docked at a pier in South Pedro, just south of L.A., exploded along with the boat, in Ghana, the boat, containing many millions of dollars worth of cocaine, simply disappeared—without a trace.

That is until the revelation of complicity over the drugs, followed by the swift arrest {on the orders of Attorney-General/Minister of Justice Joe Ghartey) of four putative drug barons two days ago at a public hearing under the aegis of Justice Georgina Woode’s eponymous committee that had been set up to look into the disappearance of the 77 parcels of missing cocaine.

Let's just put it on record that the 77 parcels were never found, and that no less than the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has cited West Africa is the quintessential place for the distribution of narcotics only goes to underscore the necessity for the parties to have talked about alleviating this scourge.

But they did not.

Not that affordable housing, or health insurance is not important, but, in my view, a healthy Ghana can agitate more explicitly for all these things.

As regards the Convention People's Party, people failed to vote for the party because it appears they were so keen to oust the incumbent party that they believed it to be a wasted vote. Dr.Nduom's official profile on Facebook only goes to show that the man is popular.

What I am not so sure about is the readiness of Ghanaians for a third force in the country. As one author rightly said on Facebook, Ghana is an NPP-NDC nation.

In my view, it need not be so.

The failure of the financial markets and the acceptance by the West for state support and regulation point to a necessity of what some might call socialist-oriented policies.

The New Statesman magazine put out an article two weeks ago about "Socialism's Comeback".

It seems incongruous that for a country that likes to emulate the West, somehow, we are afraid to discuss issues as contained in the article that point to a resurgence of the State and State-led policies that seek to protect the poor. I'm not talking about protectionism but a fundamental review of the unnecessary divestitures that have characterised the NPP, aas well as a review of the policies that have brought divisions between the rich and poor. I daresay the NDC will toe the line on market-oriented policies once they win--as many hope and believe they will on 28 December.

At the end of the day, I believe there is clear blue water between the NDC and the CPP, and the latter shall arise like the Phoenix in 2012.

Ghana needs a CPP government and a third force.

This duality is unhealthy for the nation.
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