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Breaking The Eight-Year Jinx For Continuous Dev’t

Feature Article Breaking The Eight-Year Jinx For Continuous Devt
WED, 29 NOV 2023 LISTEN

Have you ever used a dictionary called Blue Book? The real name is Progressive English Learners Dictionary, but because the colour is blue, we used to call it Blue Book. Anyone who attended middle school in the sixties will tell you that he or she has used that dictionary before.

I was fishing through my private library when I found one and decided to find the meaning of JINX. It defined the word as an evil spell. Sun Tzu, an ancient Chinese Military General, once said, 'If you know both your enemy and yourself, you can win numerous battles without a single loss and also break any jinx.” Here I go again with my circumlocution!

Thankfully for the NPP, they know themselves and their enemies, the NDC. The NPP by now know the tricks, lies, vile propaganda and evil mechanisation of the NDC who can lie through their teeth for power. When they tricked Ghanaians that if they get power, the premium paid for the NHIS will be done once in one's lifetime, we all believed in them. It turned out to be a naked lie.

The NDC continues to poison the minds of their supporters that after the NPP eight-year term in government, it is their time to continue where the NPP ended as if they are the only political party after NPP. That to me is absurd because nowhere in the Constitution was it written that a political party has an eight-year limit to rule Ghana. Before ex-President Kufuor left office, he told Ghanaians that the four-year term given to presidents to rule a country like Ghana is not enough.

According to him before the president could settle down after many months of choosing his ministers, Metropolitan, Municipal, and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs), and subsequent vetting by Parliament, a year must have passed. In his view, new ministers had to go through the mills at their various ministries before they could adjust and effectively perform their duties.

It stands to reason by his observation that the first two years of a government is used to adjust and sit well for the job ahead. President Kufuor then proposed a five-year term for an elected president. The NDC in opposition then rubbished the idea. They thought Kufuor wanted to change the Constitution to prolong his tenure of office. The matter ended there and nobody ever revisited the issue.

If the NPP had been given another eight years, all the lofty programmes initiated by Kufuor would have seen improvement, and any government which would have taken over after the NPP would have built on the achievements, to propel the economy to a higher level.

When the NDC took over after the Kufuor eight-year term, things started reversing. The National Health Insurance Scheme, the free maternal care programme, the Kufuor Bus, the Capitation Grant Scheme, free bus ride for school children and the old, School Feeding Programme, the Affordable Housing Programme and many more programmes initiated by Kufuor came tumbling down. The NDC thought they could also start something new and take credit but at the end of their eight-year term, not a single poverty alleviation programme was added. They even destroyed what they came to meet. As for roads, schools, health facilities, bridges etc, every government that has come and gone including even military governments built some. So it is not a remarkable achievement to tell me that the NDC built roads, school blocks etc. It is childish.

Imagine if a new political party comes to power after the eight-year term of the NPP and decides to do away with Free Senior High School Programme and free lunch for day students. Imagine if a new political party comes to power and decides not to honour the issue of using the Ghana Card to acquire loan to pursue university education.

Imagine if a new political party comes to power and decides to jettison Dr. Bawumia's digital economy. Imagine if a new political party comes to power and decides there is no need to subsidise fertilizers for farmers. Motorists should imagine if a new party comes to power and decides to reinstate the tollbooth levy.

You just imagine if a new political party comes to power and decides to terminate the batter trade we had with the Chinese government, which already has started yielding fruits with the construction of the Tamale Interchange.

To break the eight-year jinx, the guard post of the NPP should be unity. The era of in-fighting during primaries should be a thing of the past. The other day when Dr. Bawumia and his family members decided to visit the Manhyia Palace to thank the Otumfuo for honouring an invitation to his mother's funeral, I heard a certain irresponsible and visibly drunk woman making a mess of herself on social media.

She saw no reason why Dr. Bawumia said, now that his father and mother are all dead, he will take the Asantehene as his father. Such irresponsible persons should be thrown in the dust bin of history while the party moves forward with her plans to break the jinx. It is true a firm foundation is being laid but if the government relaxes for the NDC or any other party to come to power, the foundation will crumble.

We are not talking of a one party state but we are talking of a ruling party being given the chance to continue and finish its good policies before another party comes to takeover and continue.

I had cause to write about the weak communication strategy of the NPP in government. I was happy the President too commented on the same issue sometime ago. The government is doing wonderfully well as far as development is concerned.

In the face of the Corona Virus pandemic where many nations, including the developed nations are finding it difficult to keep their heads above water, Ghana, under Nana Akufo-Addo, is doing relatively well. Whereas other countries are laying off workers and reducing salaries, it is not so in Ghana, and Ghana is not an island. It is all about prudent management.

Very soon you will see and hear NPP men and women jostling to occupy one position or the other at the polling station, constituent, regional and national levels. The moment they are given the nod, the first thing they think about is how to make money at the expense of the party. The Women Organiser becomes the Women Disorganiser, looking for the chance the party will organise a programme where food would be cooked for her to seize the opportunity to make money.

Organising the NPP women for votes is a secondary thought. The Research Officer makes research of how to make money for himself and the Communication Officer learns how to get cheap popularity by insulting his political opponents. As for the Chairmen, all that they pray for is for money to come down from the National Headquarters for them and their other executive officers to squander. They will never save a penny for the constituency offices for the rainy day.

The wise man says, “think of tomorrow because the past can be mended.” NPP should mend the past now. These were some of the reasons why the NDC had appreciable votes in the 2020 general election. Some supporters of the NPP became apathetic and said 'if you have chopped your money, go out there and vote with your wife and children'.

This time around, I am going to be a self-appointed crusader against this unpatriotic behaviour. In fact, I am on the war path already. I will name and shame some people. Try to screw with me and see that you will never know how sharp a sword is unless it is drawn from the sheath. This is a warning to all incoming national, regional and constituency executives. The main agenda is to work hard for the party to retain power and not to make money because your party is in power.

My mission, my historic mission, is to help in my own small way to make sure the eight-year jinx is broken, and broken like broken china in the sun.

This country seems to be moving one step forward and two steps backward. We ain't going to allow this to happen. But how can we succeed? We need to put politics aside and think of how to build a vibrant economy like Malaysia and Singapore. Since attaining independence the same year as Ghana, they have put the development of their nations above partisan politics.

I am not saying we should not vote out a non-performing government, what I am saying is that if a government is performing well, we should collectively urge that government on instead of changing governments for changing sake.

Even though the late President Rawlings ruled as amilitary Head of State for 11 years, if you see what he did, he would not have been able to perform so well if there had been a change. The man built asphalted roads from Kumasi to Yeji, from Kintampo to Paga, from Takoradi to Elubo, from Kumasi through Sunyani to Dormaa Ahenkro, and many more highways.

He built schools and changed all the Technical Schools built by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah to Polytechnics. He also built overhead bridges and many more edifices. Give the NPP another eight years and you will see wonders. I end here while awaiting insults and condemnations from the power-hungry NDC attack bulldogs. Apuu! Do I care?

People think cigars are only produced in Cuba and other Caribbean countries alone. Few know that Mozambique in Africa produces the Bongani fine brand of cigar. I was searching through my 'arsenal' of cigar brands when I came by Bongani. I am going for one today because I am black and proud like James Brown, the Soul Brother Number One!!!

By Eric Bawah

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