Ghana's Pending Election: What To Learn

By Adams Boribi
Opinion Ghana's Pending Election: What To Learn
MAR 23, 2024 LISTEN

There are two ways of making decisions in political science: The empirical way and the normative way.

As the former depends on facts or the real things you can currently see via your senses, the latter emphasises the things that don't currently exist.

Since you can't currently see anything, always, if you want to talk about it, you assume. But at this stage of our existence, must we be assuming about development or progress again?

And that is the issue with the politician. A politician isn't necessarily a person who studied politics; they are just party apparatchiks who want to rule the nation.

They do anything to want to rule the nation but listen carefully, you can study politics and still be a party apparatchik. This is because you want to please your party and not the masses.

Why would you want to please your party? To earn its honour and respect because you are accountable to it and if you don't obey it, you can be eliminated at any point in time.

That's where our troubles as a nation start. The normative form of decision-making will then kick in at this point.

That's why you will see a politician or party members banging about things their party did or ought to do: And whilst they are normatively telling all the lies, they are under an influence and guess what is influencing them?

Their party, right? That's correct.
Because the party is watching them like the Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) camera, they fear it, but they don't fear you and me meanwhile we are the voters---the primary voters. The party doesn't vote because it has no thumb to vote.

And as you know, politicians fear election time like the way the cockroach fears the chicken. So you and I must start making good decisions from now on.

Be careful when you want to elect your leader. Wait a bit! I am not saying vote for party A or B but I am paraphrasing Doctor Amakye Boateng (my lecturer of Politics in Ghana at the KNUST), from a radio source I listened to, where he categorically mentioned that look at your situation and vote.

Do whatever you want with your vote because it is a secret balloting but doing so, do it wisely. If your current situation favours you the most, go ahead and vote accordingly and if it doesn't favour you a small bit, also stand upon that and vote accordingly.

If you fail to do so, it will be your cup of tea. Myself, if there were a chance, I would refute voting for any of the two major parties but I am not even confident of any third party that is available because birds of the same feather flock together all the time.

Or you are thinking about The New Force? I like one of its policies but I detest the other; bringing the sea to Kumasi.

At this point, that's not so much of relevance to us. Does Nana Kwame Bediako want to encourage more "importation" or what? How much legal exportation does Ghana do such that he is proposing extending the sea to Kumasi?

But he also announced he would set up a fund-base for helping the youths when it comes to entrepreneurship. This is ok because many of us the youths learn the handy works but don't mostly get the government subvention to kick start.

But if The New Force really wants to make it work, he has to start reasoning about the implementation strategy so that people in government will not have to invest the funds on their personal stuff(s) whilst the youths perish. The money can be set up alright, but how to effectively disburse it to the masses to start something new will be a bigger issue. For it to work, he must find a strategy.

He has to also start thinking of other relevant and feasible policies to espouse otherwise, he will also be a thorn in our flesh---we may never need him.

In public policy, a policy must be feasible, to mean, it must be simple and attainable, not too complex. For instance, let's take it that today, our major problem is road accidents.

Then we need someone to come to our aid so we start looking at their policies or the promises they are making. As a candidate, you can't promise us that when you come, you will eradicate road accidents from 95-100%.

That will be a lie because it won't be feasible---no matter what, you can't completely stop cars from crashing.

Nevertheless, if you want us to believe you, you have to say you will target to eliminate road accidents by up to 75% so you need our cooperation---then besides natural phenomena that no one can avoid, what can you do to avert drinking and driving, or sleeping during driving? Then again what else can you do to maintain our highways or small roads? And finally, you have to look at the cost involved.

This is more possible than the first. You are quite honest and realistic so we will follow you.

That's one thing politicians are messing up with but I am sure many of them know what to do to make us happy but don't want to. If that's not the case, then, they know how to say it but don't know how to do it. That is what Ghana's politics is like.

So after wielding our votes, they go into power and mess up. Well, there is an adage that goes like this, what belongs to the public can be licked with your tongue but be careful you don't chew and swallow it all.

This is what politicians and their parties in Ghana do. Instead of licking it and leaving some for others to also find, one person will nonchalantly want to crush it all and gulp down his or her belly. This way doesn't help us in any way.

They forget they are left with a few years on earth according to the chronological dying principle of human existence (cd-phe). I know the older doesn't need to die first but the chances are higher than the younger ones dying before them.

The youths are the young soil, very rich in nutrients. Why must you be wasting? You must never go waste so that you can churn out your best and change your country and the world.

The reason why you must not relent in your search for betterment by choosing wise options is that someone is waiting for you to come and save them.

What happens to them if you are not able to find your full potential to go out there to save them? That means they may die and what happens when they die? Someone else somewhere will also die and it will be a rippling effect.

Let's not only work hard but also, let's sit down and think critically as youths. That's why I opened this chapter with the two ways of decision-making or critical analysis in politics. I know you can't escape from politics so it is better to know it well.

So as one is empirical and the other normative, let's look to use them wisely. Don't let your decisions be based on your emotions, personal values or preferences. That's what the normative does. If you let your choices be based on your feelings, you will see the white and call it red.

But if you let your choices be based on facts, you will see the white and say it is white. That's the problem with the politicians. They mostly cling to the normative form so they will see black and say it is white. Who are they deceiving like that? You or me? Never!

What I am driving at, is that we have to create a connection between the past and the present, and picture the future. In simple terms, what a previous government came and did must be improved upon or continued. If we allow our emotions to drive us crazy due to party affiliations, then, all the time, where we will end up is the pit.

Already, we are partly in the pit wading to escape but we seem to be pushing ourselves more down it.

The saddest part is that due to our values or preferences or even interests, we don't know we are nudging ourselves deeper down the pit. Pity!

The effect of the normative form of decision-making is that it allows us to choose the wrong policies by leaving the right ones.

Let us play politics well. Let's make it very clean because that's how to locate peace. There is no peace because we choose to say what we like; talk based on our emotions, shout because our ego tells us to do so, and kill because our ego orders us to do it.

But if you had listened to your rational thoughts for once when making a decision, you would have defeated your bad heart at once. And you would have defeated your emotions and be the best practitioner of politics.

Don't let us be like the politicians. Even if we turn them, let us take a better path in decision-making.

The path I am proposing is this and I also learnt: you can eat what belongs to the state but don't eat and swallow everything. Leave some for those who voted for you to also find.

That way, they will talk about you but they will also praise you for the good work done. That's what humans are like. They can be hard but they can also be simple. They can gossip but they can applaud too.

The issue with nowadays politicians is that they come and eat everything and still have the confidence that we will vote for them again.

This is one of the main reasons why I am choosing to advocate for you in writing. I want you to wake up. Wake up and think well. Think about the larger majority of people suffering around, trying to make ends meet.

If you will complete schooling and still walk about without any sign of getting a job, then why did you waste many years in schooling?

No good idea is recognised today and that's why schooling is becoming useless in Ghana. What is being recognised is money. But you and I don't have any penny. What then do you do with your hard-earned knowledge from school?

Take this for a dessert. Politicians will forever remain what they are.

Well, someone once told me to always say "Some politicians not all of them". I agreed! But in the jungle of the stubborn monkeys, one messed-up monkey makes us insult the rest of the monkeys.

So the bottom line is that politicians will bang around with sweet promises when they need the votes. But they will forget about you when they get the votes simply because when they come back, they will get you to vote for them again.

Well! I can't force you for now but what I can say is that do vote wisely. Whilst you are about to vote, put emotions aside because they can lead to bigotry. Bigotry means, that even if this party is killing me, I will still vote for it and that's where I belong.

Let's focus on empiricism hence, using our rational thoughts to assess what policies are better for the nation. Let's not use our hearts.

With emotions, you will see your baby about to pour your remaining cooking oil down but because you want to prove to your enemy (the opposition) that you love your baby so much, you decide to let the baby go ahead and pour the cooking oil down.

In the end, after your enemy is gone, you will be the one to be crying inside your lonely dark room because there is no tinge of oil for cooking.

And I wouldn't be there to see how you are crying, how much more talking of consoling you. Taking it or leaving it, think about it first.

AdamIntegrated... 🙏😊