National sovereignty, peace, financial prosperity, and territory management have been the building blocks for independence. Although the world has entered a much more civilized and democratic era, human nature to win and rule has never changed. In the recorded human history of 3400 years, there has been peace for only 268 years, less than 10% of the duration of recorded human history. (NY Times). Let that sink in.
However, let us understand independence in terms of historical perspective, dynamics brought by freedom, our duties in this regard, and what makes us independent in a connected global village, where diplomatic pressure and bilateral cooperation is the first step towards successful foreign operations.
Ghana has been a nation of warriors that survived and fought through many difficult times in history. The region is full of forests and minerals resources, which attracted Europeans to invade and control. (BBC) From the Portuguese to the British, several nations had tried to control Ghana.
However, after the Second World War, and with growing local dissent and agitation, foreign control was relaxed, and the nation fought to get independence from the British under the leadership of Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. Then finally, on the 6th of March, 1957, independence was declared.
The independence drive was backed by organized movements, protests, sacrifices, and hard times. One of such movements was named Big-Six. They formed the leadership of the first-ever political party; the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), which represented the feelings and emotions of the nation and constructed political philosophy. (Africa)
A robust mindset backed this movement to achieve independence and people were ready to sacrifice their lives. This was due to our ancestor's belief that freedom always comes with a price, a price they were willing to pay.
The manifesto of the Big-Six was based on a self-regulated people Government, and they laid the strong foundation for a campaign to achieve freedom for the nation. Today, it's our duty to understand independence dynamics and act in line with national interest leading to durable REAL independence. But, we first need to understand the current independence dynamic accordingly. (Six big)
INDEPENDENCE DYNAMICS FOR THE NATION
Let’s discuss independence dynamics in terms of basic pillars that help a nation flourish and understand where we stand today. Are we heading in the right direction, or is there something to improve the situation?
No power on earth can be sustained without economic independence. The acquisition of economic power is dependent on the geographic atmosphere and the working attitude of the people.
After independence, there have been management and country governance problems leading to adverse economic conditions. However, in the mid of 1990, governance reforms were introduced that led the economy on the right path. In fact, in 2019, IMF and World Bank predicted the highest growth rate of 8.8% for the economy after the country placed sixth in the previous year, with a growth rate of 5.6%. (DW)
Last year, rating agencies predicted that the economy would grow by 4.8% in 2021, in line with the IMF projections for the same period. (Business insider Africa) This economic growth is driven by growth in different sectors, including oil, agriculture, manufacturing, and the service industry. The main problem with our GDP is that investment is dependent on foreign companies. The higher performance of an oil sector even comes through the direct investment of foreign companies.
Ideally, we must think whether that makes us dependent on foreign companies for our revenue/GDP. There is the massive potential for conflict of interest, which might lead to compromise on our national interest.
The Justice System
The justice system is designed to control law and order in the country. It aims to protect innocents and convict criminals. Without a fair and free justice system, it is difficult to control justice and ensure prosperity in the country.
No nation in the world can survive without an effective and robust justice system. In recent times, the need to introduce and implement a strong justice system has increased more than ever. It's because of increasing digitalization, cybercrime, computer security, and increasing digitalization connected with financial transactions.
The coming future is for technology advancement and automation. There is a need to focus on the legal aspects of moving into the digital era. The legal system of Ghana is based on Common law, English doctrine of equity, and customary laws. The law-making system is based on the constitution and the acts of parliament. (Globalex)
As the world is changing quickly, there is a need to pro-actively review applicable laws and ensure modification/changes are in line with the digital era/cyber security.
The Education System
Ghana’s education system was first introduced as missionary schools by the colonial government and this was expanded and has evolved over the years to the current system.
The biggest benefit of a strong education system is the enhanced ability of individuals to make decisions. It helps in poverty elimination, increased human life expectancy, and long-term prosperity.
The education system develops human capital and leads to long-term prosperity in terms of operational life and financial aspects.
Further, the science behind educational importance is that it helps to shape humans of the society. In return, these humans help enhance society. We cannot achieve a truly independent state unless we promote educational activities.
Ghana is committed to increasing quality education for the people across the country and there have been reforms in our educational policy. The main priorities of the educational reforms have included quality output and efficiency in the educational system. (side martinbro)
The Social Mechanics
Social mechanics is a broader term that includes family values, size, structure, buying habits, education level, income, community, safety, and many other factors. Social mechanics can be better understood with the concept that some social acts may be acceptable in one society and not in another.
The qualities and attributes of society directly impact the mental and physical health of its members. The qualities that make a social circle a great place to live are freedom, liberty, fairness, democratic consent, easy access to human essentials, compassion, and responsible citizens.
From a social perspective, Ghana is rich in sports, music, textiles, and regional festivals. However, there is a need to launch our culture around the globe and attract international attention. There has been heavy efforts in recent times towards this. We can still do more to promote our culture and social value to attract international tourists. This screams out our real independence. (Britannica)
It's an era of modern advancements and artificial intelligence. Companies and businesses worldwide have been automating their processes and operations via the implementation of technologies. These advancements lead to higher speed, quality, and controlled services cost.
It’s important to note that Ghana has a higher proportion of young generations. This makes it relatively easier for our people to learn technology and achieve tasks using advanced technology. It is necessary to make more investments in this regard to ensure that Ghana remains relevant and independent in the years to come, able to still compete profitably globally.
There is increasing emphasis on the environmental aspects. Companies and businesses around the globe want to affiliate and do business with countries that have massive respect for environmental laws and regulations.
A system of socially enhanced culture is expected to have a control mechanism for controlling pollution, global warming, ocean acidification, ozone layer depletion, loss of biodiversity, and public health issues.
OUR DUTIES TO SUSTAIN INDEPENDENCE
There is a need to enhance collective efforts in making Ghana a great society full of love and prosperity. We can achieve the real freedom we had a dream for. But, what are our duties to enhance our independence and achieve it in the true spirit?
First, we must understand that a nation only builds and sustains based on loyalty. Some call it patriotism, but that’s a loaded term. Let’s just call it loyalty, loyalty to our country.
Today's world is a global village. It means there is a greater need to remain loyal in terms of territorial boundaries and various operational/financial aspects. In simple words, we must encourage local products/services and protect national interest in every aspect of life. Made in Ghana products must be catapulted to the forefront and we must have a sense of protecting and promoting our own.
So, when is a country independent?
The independence of the country needs to be seen beyond borders and territories. When a country is independent, it's free to make decisions and balance economic, social, cultural, religious, and other strategic aspects without external influences.
The country is economically viable when it has sound economic reserves and financial feasibility. In simple terms, the strategic and operational decisions of the country should not be dependent on financial support from other countries but in the best interest of the Republic. Ghana needs to encourage local investment in its oil, agriculture, clothing, manufacturing and services sectors.
The social roots of the nation have a massive impact on the living standard, health parameters, spending habits, and our overall efficiency. And the most important aspect is the working attitude of the nation. Ghana has a higher proportion of the young generation. We need to take advantage of that to push for advancement in all sectors as it’s easy for the youth to learn and change the status quo.
For a nation to be truly independent, it needs to be independent in revenue generation, controlling social aspects, promoting quality education, enhancing the judicial system, pushing for environmental achievements, and technological advancements. As a nation, we need to focus on different attributes or pillars that make Ghana a great nation; where everyone has access to justice, quality education, reliable healthcare facilities, and equality. This is what makes a nation independent. And yes, we live to make Ghana independent every day, every hour, and every second.
At least that’s how it’s supposed to be, right?
I hope you enjoyed the read. Hit me up and let’s keep the conversation going! I read all the feedback you send. Also, feel free to throw at me topics you’d like to read or hear my thoughts on. You can always head to my Calendly to schedule a quick chat by going to calendly.com/maxwellampong. Or connect with me your own way through my Linktree: https://linktr.ee/themax.
These are all facts. And this has been an opinion piece.
Have a blessed week!
Africa. (n.d.). https://africa.si.edu/exhibitions/current-exhibitions/heroes-principles-of-african-greatness/faces/
BBC. (n.d.). https://www.bbc.com/pidgin/world-60630155
Britannica. (n.d.). https://www.britannica.com/place/Ghana/Daily-life-and-social-customs
Business Insider Africa. (n.d.). https://africa.businessinsider.com/local/markets/fitch-solutions-projects-ghanas-economy-to-be-the-fastest-growing-in-sub-saharan/r34qt51
Globalex. (n.d.). https://www.nyulawglobal.org/globalex/Ghana.html#:~:text=Ghana%2C%20being%20a%20common%20law,the%20independence%20of%20the%20judiciary
NY Times. (n.d.). https://www.nytimes.com/2003/07/06/books/chapters/what-every-person-should-know-about-war.html
side martinbro. (n.d.). https://www.sidmartinbio.org/what-has-ghana-done-to-improve-education/
Six big. (n.d.). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Big_Six_(Ghana)
Wikipedia. (n.d.). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kwame_Nkrumah
Dw 02/2019 IMF World Economic Outlook puts Ghana in the lead https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.dw.com/en/imf-world-economic-outlook-puts-ghana-in-the-lead/a-48356052
Dr. Maxwell Ampong designs Sustainability Development Models and is the CEO of Maxwell Investments Group, a leading supplier of impact products and services worldwide. He is also the Co-Founder of The RIO Corporation, the connectors between impoverished communities and impact solutions worldwide. He writes about trending and relevant economic topics, and general perspective pieces.