Our government today has the penchant to acquiesce to pressure from all quarters, giving the impression that the state is weak.
In a democracy, nobody expects an adversarial relationship but open engagement with all stakeholders for the public’s welfare. However, it is clear that the interregnum of military and dictatorial regimes since our independence demonstrate our lack of maturity to be responsible in a free state.
The difference between the NPP and the NDC governments is that during the latter, the people tend to be law abiding. Perhaps, it is because like John Mahama said, the NDC was born out of the revolutionary roots and when it comes to violence no one can beat it to it, and for this reason the people fear to challenge the NDC.
The NPP must learn to invoke the laws of the land to ensure respect for order and security in the land. The state must prevent bodies like the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) to have their way and become a law onto itself. We are watching closely this time around to see whether the power of the state can be used to stop the lawlessness of drivers who prefer the “freedom” in the jungle to the order in civilised societies.
We expect that this time around, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, the Transport Minister, would not sleep on the job but act in the interest of the people. The government should not allow might to hold away but assure the poor, vulnerable and excluded that the government cares about them too.
All so-called independent bodies think that they can ignore the authority of the state and operate as autonomous bodies, but run to the state for help in times of need.
In some sectors, the state has to intervene to ensure that the poor and vulnerable are protected in the deregulated sectors otherwise there would be chaos in the society. We call on the Minister of Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, to show leadership this time around to compel the GPRTU and other operators to put up with the tradition.
For sure, the government would not preside over the collapse of a very important sector like road transport, but the state would not allow any individuals or group of individuals to hold the people to ransom.
When roads are bad, the drivers make loud calls on government to fix them, with threats of demonstrations and yet the GPRTU questions the authority of the state in deciding on transport fares.
We call on the state to demonstrate leadership to the extent that ALL, we mean ALL would recognise that without order in the society there would be chaos, as the powerful would take the law into his her hand.
Mr. President, we humbly call on you to crack the whip on some of your men and women who are in a deep slumber, creating the impression that in Ghana today “each one for himself and God for us all”.
Never again should the people be made to believe that the state has surrendered its role to powerful groups in the country. Let the GPRTU bluff be dealt with decisively to restore the people’s confidence in the state to provide safety nets in times of challenges.