25.09.2022 Feature Article

Ghana’s Economic Problems Are Structural and Systemic, Not Individual or Personal

Ghanas Economic Problems Are Structural and Systemic, Not Individual or Personal
25.09.2022 LISTEN

If previous and successive Ghanaian governments have resorted to the twin Bretton-Woods establishments of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development – IBRD) 16 times, at the last count, and it is well documented that each and every postcolonial Ghanaian leader, beginning with Prime Minister Kwame Nkrumah, later redesignated as Executive-President Kwame Nkrumah, of the Sovereign Democratic Republic of Ghana, then the present economic crisis wracking the country cannot be blamed on Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Ghana’s fifth Fourth-Republican President. The problem is decidedly one that is inherited, with the late President Jeremiah “Jerry” John Rawlings, the Founding-Father of the present main opposition political party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC), having dominated Ghana’s political landscape as a de facto and virtual one-party dictatorship for two decades.

So, it is inexcusably absurd for Mr. Kwesi Pratt, editor-publisher of the so-called Insight newspaper, to be misogynistically lambasting the Managing-Director of the IMF, Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, for mischievously seeking to exonerate Nana Akufo-Addo from taking full responsibility for the country’s present economic crisis. First of all, we need to highlight the fact that Mr. Pratt lacks the level of credibility and integrity that should authorize or warrant his moral and democratic right to so smugly presume to impugn the administrative competence of the key cabinet appointees and operatives of the Akufo-Addo-led government of the New Patriotic Party.

You see, Mr. Pratt has been a prime beneficiary of the kleptocratic shenanigans and the wantonly destructive economic policies of the National Democratic Congress for some three decades now, including having been on the free-fuel supply list of the late President John Evans Atta-Mills-led government of the National Democratic Congress, and may also very well have been on the payroll of the John Dramani Mahama-led government of the National Democratic Congress that immediately succeeded the Atta-Mills regime of which, by the way, the now-former President Mahama was the substantive Vice-President. As well, prior to the advent of Ghana’s Fourth Republic, Mr. Pratt was widely known to be a deadly decoy and informant of the Chairman Rawlings-led junta of the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC) and is widely alleged to have inherited a printing press that was formerly owned by the late Mr. Chris Asher, the hard-hitting anti-PNDC journalist and firebrand editorialist and publisher of the no-punch-pulling Palaver newspaper.

In other words, Mr. Pratt has a vested interest in ensuring the massive and apocalyptic failure of the present New Patriotic Party government as a surefire guarantee to having the National Democratic Congress returned to Jubilee House, that is, the Presidency, so that he and his parasitic cronies could continue to, once again, blindly and wantonly milk our collective national wealth and the Ghanaian taxpayer raw to the marrow, as Mr. Mahama is widely known to be fond of saying. In short, for Mr. Pratt, cheaply scapegoating President Akufo-Addo and Finance Minister Kenneth Ofori-Atta enables the reprobate and cynical critic to conveniently avoid a serious discussion about the inescapably neocolonialist structure of Ghana’s largely rudimentary and extractive economic system, that has ensured that the government will not be able to generate adequate revenue for the sustainable and relatively debt-free development of the country.

Ironically, the culpability of the Akufo-Addo Administration inheres in the fact of its visionary and foresighted recognition of this structural and systemic defect in the general physiology and architecture of Ghana’s economy but the government’s apparent lack of the requisite determination to promptly and definitively resolving the same. Of course, it is an age-old problem for which an effective and definitive solution is highly unlikely to be effected in the offing. Already, the Akufo-Addo Administration has begun orienting Ghana towards an inevitable and indispensable industrial and manufacturing base, with the auspicious launching of the landmark ONE DISTRICT, ONE FACTORY program.

This has been fundamentally necessitated by the fact that the ill-fated Bretton-Woods-engineered Structural Adjustment Program (SAP), facilely and inadvisably brought into existence and operation by an economically desperate and grossly incompetent junta of the Rawlings-led Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC), throughout most of the 1980s, effectively and catastrophically deindustrialized the country, to the damnable extent that, to be certain, the Ghana that this writer left behind in July 1985 was relatively far more industrially advanced than present-day Ghana, which the cynical and imperious and cocky likes of Mr. Pratt would have the rest of us, bona fide members of the global Ghanaian public, believe to be the unique and singular handicraft of the present Akufo-Addo government.

When Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, the IMF’s Managing-Director, resoundingly affirms the incontrovertible fact that, indeed, the global COVID-19, China-originated pandemic and the Russian War on The Ukraine have had a significant impact on the heavily stressed Ghanaian economy, she must know precisely what she is talking about, being that she is armed to the hilt, as it were, with the most professionally reliable and expert facts and set of figures about the same in ways that the economically untutored likes of Mr. Pratt and Dr. Richard Amoako-Baah could, at best, only marginally fathom. So, short of his patently and repulsively idiotic attempt to misogynistically “bimboize” Ms. Georgieva, the likes of Messrs. Pratt and Amoako-Baah have absolutely nothing substantive or materially progressive to add to the present high-end engagement going on between the Akufo-Addo Administration and expert advisers from the Bretton-Woods establishment.

If prior to its very reluctant decision to resort to the IMF-World Bank loan solicitation assistance, the present government did not seem to have much that was historically and ideologically positive or progressive to say about the Bretton-Woods establishments, this was primarily because in the past the IMF and The World Bank had not dealt progressively and constructively, and productively, with Ghana and most of the rest of the so-called Third World. Hopefully, the sort of Horse-Rider or patently slavocratic relationship that has existed between these Aryan-North establishments and the rest of the Non-Aryan and Non-European world for as long us any of us can remember is significantly and auspiciously beginning to change for the better. Much better.

*Visit my blog at: KwameOkoampaAhoofeJr

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD

English Department, SUNY-Nassau

Garden City, New York

September 17, 2022

E-mail: [email protected]