Intellectual Insatiability And Poverty Perpetuation
It was mouth watering to read about the earning of the highest paid pensioner (60 million cedis per month) and the lowest paid pensioner (150 thousand cedis per month). I am not against earnings of productive citizens, but my questions were, did the highest paid pensioner turn dust into gold for Ghana or saved the country from an imminent civil war, did the one launch Ghana into the super technology productive industry, produced some brilliant human resource that has the prospects of permanently changing the fortunes of Ghanaians or saved a whole generation from imminent death.
I know the reason for the lowest paid pensioner, simply because he had no supposedly academic qualification though his or her skill or strength in the said work were overwhelming. It is amazing how our intellectuals are greedy. I do not know the institution the one worked for; I shall not be surprised if it were one of the financial institutions. If the said pensioner is a private entrepreneur, the better, but I strongly think otherwise. The hypocrisy and blatant exploitation by our management and ruling class must be called to order. It is with pain that our productive enterprises have folded up over the years. Recently to join the wagon is Ghana Airways, still in the quagmire is SSNIT, Electricity Company of Ghana, Ghana Water Company, Tax Institutions, Ghana Energy Commission etc. And these managers are supposedly intellectuals, so where is the line between greed, injustice corruption and learned. I have commented once that Ghanaian literates are the unmaking of Ghanaians. They are too selfish and greedy, with no heart for fellow man. There is no responsibility toward fellows, all is about self aggrandizement. Unfortunately we fail to realize that our insatiable appetite is responsible for our insecurity. I am not holding fort for any arm-robber, but the truth is that what most Ghanaian managers and leaders do legally with their prowess and knowledge, arm-robbers do with their strength, knives and guns. It is clear that arm-robbery is high in countries with great gaps between the wealthy and the poor. Education has been used to exploit the poor and perpetuate poverty in Ghana.
In our workplaces (excluding one man enterprises), our managers output are questionable but for conferences and seminars. Further, aside continuing the existing schedule, only a few have brought quantifiable productive changes to the set ups. However, these have in deciding the worth of each part of the productive force, widen the gap between the poor and the rich (rent seeking at its best), just as the developed nations perpetuate poverty in developing countries in deciding the form and price of agricultural produce. I was thrilled to learn that Ghanaian tax payers cater for the house-servants of our members of parliament. Are our MP's not promoting slavery among the poor in our land? How come their children and dependant relations cannot serve them? My fellow nationals, the era is over for us to continue the poverty perpetuation in Ghana. Let us eliminate practically all forms and practices that enhance poverty. I think the practical worth of every part of the productive force would have to be considered before sharing whatever, amount need be shared. We cannot decide the worth of our managers and leaders in absentia from the other staff. It is not about how one is worth in exclusion, but how much we are able to produce as a team and therefore have to share. These are the real and practical paths to poverty alleviation. I tried to compute the ratio of the earnings of the highest and lowest paid pensioners and the ratio was a startling 400:1. Can poverty alleviation be ever achieved with such a ratio of sharing? Let us not continue to pay lip service to poverty alleviation. We can make life relatively comfortable for every productive Ghanaian.
The other issue is the tax systems in our land. I think our taxing system makes people more prone to dodge taxes than pay taxes because they appear punitive. Interestingly, this has been to the advantage of our tax collectors as they connive with would be tax payers to forge figures. Everyone acknowledges the importance of taxes in the development of Ghana, but the rates and procedures are prohibitive. How come the estimates are always higher and scary than the real and what is the wisdom of charging such high taxes that result in equipment and vehicles waiting to rot at the habour? Fellow countrymen, the injustices in our earnings and taxes are cumulatively unproductive, serving only the wanton greed of a few. We will be safer to build a relative fairer and more just earning systems to develop Ghana. Otherwise the Ataa Ayi's shall give us no rest in our nights, though we spend much on security. On the contrary well meaning Ghanaians will have to take to the streets to end the poverty perpetuation by the management and leadership. Poverty alleviation is a reality. The human and capital resource of Ghana can develop Ghana.