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16.02.2003 Feature Article

Is The Policy of Probity, Accountability and Transparency a thing of the past?

Is The Policy of Probity, Accountability and Transparency a thing of the past?
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Lack of accountability by NPP government is a very serious problem that must be dealt with seriously before NPP becomes another tax and spend government like the NDC. As we all recall, probity, accountability and transparency were the catchwords and a mantra used by the NDC to fool and deceive Ghanaian taxpayers. No one in the NDC believed in the Constitution nor did they care to read it. Rather they believed in their Manifesto, which was supposed to be implemented within the Constitution. They believed that their sheer majority in the Parliament gave them the mandate to tax and spend people’s money as they pleased. NPP was very critical of that policy and was anxious to change it once they are elected. Unfortunately, Ghanaians find themselves in the same predicament. The NPP is applying the same gimmick to continue to deceive Ghanaian taxpayers. They too believe that with their majority in the Parliament they have the mandate to generate revenue from any way they want, borrow money in the name of the people of Ghana and spend them without probity, accountability and probity. If Kufour and the NPP are allowed to continue this policy then, the Constitution does not worth the paper on which it is written. After all the hooplas and fanfares generated when the NPP took office, Ghanaians have come to realize that the NPP leadership is more interested in promoting their self interest than protecting the Constitution they swore to uphold. Like their predecessor NDC, NPP lack leadership direction and discipline that must be provided by Kufour. They seem to be moving in all directions traveling all over the world, begging and borrowing money and spending them without transparency and communication with the people who elected them to power. There is lack of communication even among the ministers. They have so many Special Assistants that they are almost unreachable. Ghana is at a crossroad in terms of its economy, development and population growth. As a party leader Kufour must be prepared to lead the nation and his party to avoid criticism. NPP promised a lot during the campaign, which they have yet to deliver! Unemployment is still very high for a country the size of Ghana. Bribery and corruption persist as overtaxed Ghanaians continued to pay even more taxes. Living standard for a majority of Ghanaians has not changed since the NPP took office. How can they blame all of these on oil price? I spent two months in Ghana recently and returned to the US disappointed and disillusioned in the leadership of the NPP and the direction of the Ghanaian economy but I continue to have hope and believe in the resiliency of Ghanaians. During my visit, I talked with party officials from NPP, NDC and CPP. They all have different views of how Ghana should be governed and yet they are not able to articulate or share their visions with the public at large. I watched deliberations in the Parliament conducted with half of the MPs absent as items on the agenda were tabled for the next meeting. I asked myself how could they accomplish anything meaningful for the public if they are gone most of the time? I believe that our leaders still have a long way to go before understanding the true meaning of Probity, Accountability and Transparency. We must ensure that they protect and uphold the Ghanaian Constitution as they promised. May God bless Ghana

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