He smugly grandstands and imperiously pontificates almost as if the decision by President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to engage with the Bretton-Woods establishment for a balance-of-payment bailout was not at least partly and significantly due to former President John “European Airbus Payola” Dramani Mahama’s gross ineptitude and administrative incompetence that culminated in the effective collapse of nearly every crucial social-intervention program established by the first Fourth Republican New Patriotic Party (NPP) government that was led by Mr. John Agyekum-Kufuor including, most notably, the latter’s signature National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) – (Read More: Fire Bawumia as Economic Management Team Chair, exclude failed Ofori-Atta from bailout negotiations – Mahama to Akufo-Addo).
Maybe, rather than vacuously call for the removal of Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia as Ex-Officio Chairperson of the government’s Economic Management Team (EMT), Mr. Mahama, whose greatest claim to fame is diarrheal payola solicitation from government contractors, would be better off telling the nation how successful he was himself as Vice-President to the late President John Evans Atta-Mills and as Chairperson of the Economic Management Team of the Atta-Mills government, whose most significant economic achievement appears to have been the criminally shameless public support for party mega-thieves like Mr. Alfred Agbesi Woyome and the infamous GH₵ 51.2 million creaming of our National Treasury and the Judgment Debt Gravy Train.
Obviously, Kwame Gonja, as the former President is also popularly known, would have Vice-President Bawumia removed from his Chairmanship of the EMT so as to give the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) scam-artist and architect of this most scandalous act of national economic hemorrhage and betrayal an electioneering-campaign legroom in the runup to the 2024 Presidential Election. Fortunately, Kwame Gonja is highly unlikely to be granted this most patently undeserved of his wishes. For, at the end of the day, when all has been said and done, as it were, Vice-President Bawumia is still ages and light years ahead of each and every one of the so-called economics experts who served in the rag-tag government of Mr. Mahama and, in particular, on the Mahama-constituted Economic Management Team.
It is also rather comical for the former President to cavalierly presume to lecture his immediate successor on how to dictate the terms in which the administrators of the IMF will be allowed to facilitate Ghana’s fiscal bailout. Maybe somebody needs to remind Kwame Gonja of that tired old maximum that warns that “A beggar has absolutely no choice” vis-à-vis the sort or kind of help that s/he receives from a generous or charitable benefactor. Of course, we all know that the IMF is no charitable benefactor or Santa Claus trawling our neighborhoods and voluntarily giving out cakes and candies to all with whom s/he comes into contact. It is also quite obvious that 8 protracted years at the Presidency did not teach the SADA kingpin and Ouagadougou Nkonfem trader any worthwhile lessons about the efficient and progressive administration of the Sovereign Democratic Republic of Ghana.
Now, what is equally important for the Ghanaian electorate and the citizenry at large to bear in mind, in the leadup to the 2024 General Election, is not the stark figures of the total debt stock of the country per se but, rather, the kind and quality of services and social-intervention programs established or revived and significantly improved by the Akufo-Addo-led New Patriotic Party government vis-à-vis the previous Mahama-led government of the National Democratic Congress. We are also amused by the fact that the man who flatly refused an invitation from a newly elected President Akufo-Addo to the Presidency, or Jubilee House, to deliberate on some of the most meaningful and progressive ways of moving the nation forward, would now effusively resort to the provision of several pieces of advice absolutely none of which is apt to facilitate the most efficient mode of moving our country even an inch or a millimeter up the economic development ladder.
We also have absolutely no doubt, and we have been saying this for approximately a year now, that the Finance Minister, Mr. Kenneth Ofori-Atta, could be strongly encouraged to make a maximum use of a two-year vacation or leave of absence, but not necessarily for reasons akin to the inescapably propagandistic manner proposed by Kwame Gonja who, by the way, as both Vice-President and substantive President of the Sovereign Democratic Republic of Ghana, performed at least three times worse than could be said about Mr. ofori-Atta who, by the way, has undoubtedly had his own fair share of significant administrative missteps or foibles to reckon with. It has often been said that people who live in glass houses should be mindful of reckless stone-throwing games. Yours truly would just go one step further to counsel that it equally behooves those who live in straw huts to be extremely mindful of not recklessly playing with matchsticks.
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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
July 2, 2022
E-mail: [email protected]