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03.11.2008 Editorial

Astonishingly Revealing

By Daily Guide
Astonishingly Revealing

Ivor Agyeman Dua's Economic History of Ghana: Reflections On A Half Century of Challenges and Progress could not have joined the catalogue of contemporary literature on Ghana at a better time.

At a time when a lot of deliberate distortions have been rendered the story of Ghana's growth since independence, especially in the past close to eight years or so, an objective presentation on the veracity of the situation is a welcome development.

This piece cannot certainly pass for a book review suffice it though to state that  Ivor Agyeman Dua has carved an enviable position for himself as an author par excellence churning out contemporary eye-opening publications about his motherland.

With contributions from such personalities like a former Vice President, Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, who headed an Economic Management Team during the tenure of Mr. Jerry John Rawlings political administration and others, the book under focus can be described as reflective of the truth.

For us though the revelations at the book launch, especially those from the Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Akwasi Akoto cannot be glossed over.

Quoting from a World Bank study, the deputy minister asserted that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Ghana has been grossly underestimated by a whopping 80 percent.

Another study he added would soon be ordered by the world body to find out the true position of the country's production of goods and services over the last one year.

Should this study be proven through a presentation of the real figure, there is no doubt that those in charge of managing the economy of the country can with confidence pat each other on the back for an excellent performance.

We the citizenry can also appreciate better progress chalked over since the incumbent political administration assumed leadership in the country.

Prof. Mills, whose contribution is part of the compilation of economic literature under review, ironically posted a gloomy picture of the economy when he made an appearance for a presidential debate under the auspices of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA).

For the umpteenth time, the old Prof. quoted erroneous figure to buttress his gloomy picture of the economy.

We recall how his New Patriotic Party (NPP) counterpart corrected him about the GDP figure not being zero but ten percent.

We are wondering how he felt when the deputy minister presented the World Bank finding. We are interested in finding out whether he is a in a position to dispute the World Bank position which adds that some economic activities  were left out when the computation was being  made for the GDP.

Dr. K. Y. Amoako, former Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa was not left out of the story when he pointed at an impressive progress over the past few years and the need for the diversification of the economy.

The triple effects of the global economic crunch reflected in a rise in food price and oil were adequate tests for the resilience of our economy.

That we have been able to hold our own in the face of a turbulent world economy especially the unprecedented rise in crude oil price buttresses adequately President John Agyekum Kufuor's assertion that ours is a resilient economy.

The periodic long queues at fuel stations have become a material for history books and food prices though occurred was by and large contained by most households.

But for our ability to contain the negative economic trends which visited the world as a whole, political killjoys would have called Ghanaians on to the streets.

Even with the current picture they have sought to create a picture of hopelessness to rock the boat of the state.

Prof. Mills' picture for instance was an extension of the efforts of the killjoys.

We take solace that the World Bank has posted an alternative picture whose impression is heart-warming.

We hope that Ghanaians as we march towards December 7 would appreciate the importance of sincerity, continuity and focus, elements which have accounted for the progress chalked so far.



Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not neccessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."