Folks, anytime I mention that President Mahama is the best thing ever happened to Ghana, some people think I'm being sycophant, but the undeniable truth is that he has the mark of a visionary leader and visionary leaders are strategic planners.
They possess mental mind’s eye; they have the ability to see things long before others - they seem to see the future. Average thinkers think only about the present, and about immediate gratification. But visionary leaders think about where they want to be in many years' time.
They do not only go just a little beyond conventional wisdom to produce significant innovation, but go much further. This is the distinguishing characteristic of H.E. John Dramani Mahama.
On Tuesday, November 7, 2023, at a meeting with the Ghana Trades Union Congress (TUC), he reiterated his vision to roll out a 24-hour economy when voted for as president in December 2024, which will see workers engaged in a three-shift system. The General Secretary of the TUC, Dr Anthony Yaw Baah lauded the policy as a game changer that will create jobs for the teeming unemployed youth of Ghana.
The good news is that the economic and social benefits of Mahama's 24-hour economy are numerous and unimaginable. As more businesses and services operate 24/7, there will be a demand for a more sustainable and productive workforce.
There will also be the need for the state to recruit more security personnel to maintain peace and order at night which will further create more jobs for the youth.
Oops! I haven't even thought of jobs for trotro, taxi, uber drivers, etc.
The question I know is lingering in the minds of many who are reading this article is how these extra workers are going to be paid?
This should not be a problem, a 24-hour economy will generate more revenue to handle that because for example a company operating 24 hours is likely to earn more revenue than one working only during business hours in the day.
The State will as well earn more revenue through increase work output and taxes to pay those on government payroll.
The benefits that could be unlocked from a 24-hour economy include the reduction of traffic congestion during peak hours since commuting and traveling periods would be spread. Motorists will also save the amount of petrol and diesel they consume in traffic, reducing government's budget on the importation of fuel.
It will only take a visionary leader to think of something of that sort. Mahama is unquestionably an expensive gift to Ghana. Interestingly, we don't value what we have till we lose it.
Kwame Nkrumah was labelled by his adversaries as one of the worst rulers ever during his reign as president of the First Republic. But many years after his death, we have come to recognise his value, and have wished he is alive to continue the good work he started for this nation.
Our love for Mahama must be unrequited. Let's all support his second bid for president, else posterity will never forgive us.
And in order to make this informed choice, let's take a clue from Philippians 4:8 of the Bible which says: "Finally brethren, whatsoever things are true; whatsoever things are honest; whatsoever things are just; whatsoever things are pure; whatsoever things are of good report, if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise think of these things."
No matter how hard some people try to vilify, pillory and demonise him; one thing is clear: you cannot suppress the rays of a light - it will surely break-forth.
JDM has a genuine desire to contribute to our beautiful country, and I believe down my heart that he will not deviate from that path; he will not falter because his heart is pure and his faith is strong. He is breathtakingly phenomenon!
Anthony Obeng Afrane