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10.03.2009 Education

When Ghana belongs to a few

By Daily Guide

I KEEP asking myself this rhetoric question: “Who does Ghana belong to?” I mean who can we say (as a group of people or individuals) are the bona fide owners of this beautiful country called Ghana?

I'm always worried as a 'Shiabii' when I see someone or a group of people behaving like they are the only ones who own the country.

It is therefore no wonder that the moment a political party wins  power, its leadership and followers behave like the country is a piece of trophy which the winner of the political contest holds onto securely.

The lifespan of any political party in power in this country is four years. The constitution of Ghana is explicit about this and the people have come to terms with it. Unfortunately, politicians in the practical sense do not believe that four years is just a number and within a period of time, their tenure will end. In plain terms, the attitude of some people in our society on the assumption of political power leaves much to be desired.

In all spheres of life here in Ghana, everybody wields some 'small' power in the little corner he/she finds him or herself. This power can be utilized for the cause of humanity while others use it for pure intimidation, trying to make life hellish for others who are perceived to be 'enemies' instead of opponents.

I'm sure our decision to practice multi-party democracy and the dream of the people of the consultative assembly was to create an environment for all so that abuse of societal norms could be kept at the barest minimal.

It was a dream for both 'Bungalowbii' and 'Shiabii' to find common ground to take a decision that would influence and make life worth living.

Whether you are a 'bungalowbii' who drinks 'golden' water, sleeps on a 'golden' bed and eats 'golden' food; or  a 'shiabii' who sleeps on 'sore ko juma' bed or a member of the association of 'yo ke gari' borrowers, both of you have only one vote. It means that when it comes to the most singular highest decision of selecting the leadership of this country, your 'kokromoti' power is equal to none.

It is that singular power and honour that makes the 'bungalowbii' politician pay you a 'Nichodemus' visit, virtually on his knees begging you to 'vote for me'.

The democratic path we took in 1992 is a path that gives both the 'Shiabii' and the 'Bungalowbii' a say in the affairs of the state. Whether or not we voted for a particular party or person to rule this country, as soon as that exercise of choosing the leader and his representatives to the house of 'dis-honourables' is over, we are together as one people again.

Ideally, this is how it should be, but in 'Anansekrom', wishes could be horses but beggars cannot ride. That is the situation we find ourselves in.

After many years of rule by the barrel of the gun, a new government came to power and Ghanaians went gay. The excitement that greeted that government gave way to frustration as a result of conscious and systematic efforts to institutionalize a culture of impunity.

Members of the House of 'dis-honourables' had become so arrogant and mean-looking that those of us who voted for them to 'chop-chop' on our behalf became like nonentities. The 'Shiabii' were no longer part of the scheme of things.

Well, like the Biblical Saul, the Kingdom of political power was taken away from them and handed over to the 'Asomdwoehene'. On his assumption of office, he declared the end of the culture of impunity, end of disrespect to 'Shiabii' and a nation where 'obiara ye obi'.

In the light of such declarations, the 'Shiabii who struggled at night to bring the 'Asomdwoehene' to power were also empowered and made to feel proud that 'their time has come'. Unfortunately, some elements who had never tasted what it takes to be on a campaign trail crossing rivers at midnight suddenly popped up, thwarting the quest of Prof. Mills to be a father to all and avoid victimization of anyone, including members of the 'Konkonsa' association.

The cessation of the vicious cycle of targeting one's opponents while in power announced by the 'Asomdwoehene' had not sunk deep into the eardrums of such people. Some section of the media has become their target of abuse and all manner of verbal attacks.

The decision to report from the 'White House' of Ghana is now at the whims and caprices of some small boy whose decision is based on how well he slept.

In the last government, those at the top did not know that some of their members were eating into their 'beard' and doing all manner of 'huhudius' deals at the blind side of the 'Gentle Giant'.

At the end of the day, the actions and inactions of such saboteurs were used as the benchmarks to decide whether “we are moving forward” or “yere sesemu”. Today, some people in this administration have started 'misbehaving' and doing things they have not been instructed to do.

In plain language, they tell some of the 'Konkonsa' people in the face that “you were against us and now we shall show you”. True to their words, some media houses have been axed from the “White House”. I know that the 'Asomdwoehene' is not aware of this but I hope someone will bring it to his notice that the promises he made to Ghanaians have not been adhered to.

Those saboteurs should be told that the cane used in beating 'Tachie' shall also be used to beat 'Baah' and that rain or shine, the lifespan of their party is four years. Our eyes are watching.