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06.07.2009 Feature Article

The Demons of Northern Development

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Northern Ghana since independence has lagged behind in all aspect of national forward match: education, health, mentality and infrastructure out of the lot. This can be largely attributed to the damning level of poverty that plagued majority of the people. But why the north is poor is a question that demands a prose of explanation.

The high poverty level many a times is rationalised by the late arrival of formal education in that part. However, I share the same opinion, but I can envisage several more factors responsible for the retroversion of the north.

Until 2001, Northern Region burgeons considerably in terms of infrastructural development and entrepreneurial businesses. It was heart-warming to have noticed then that there were positive signals to stitching the chasm between the North and South. The “no-understanding” mentality of northerners observably saw an improvement under constant exorcism by peace.

Regrettably, the road to attaining independence for the North was barricaded – peace fled us. Up to date, northerners fail to reconcile their senses on the topic of “Who drove away our development partner, Peace.” It is thinking time for us. For Heaven's sake, why must we allow ourselves to be used as means for other's ends? If we allow these unscrupulous individuals to exploit us all the time, their children certainly will exploit our children. The vicious cycle must be bisected now! A reminisce and rethinking will do us much good.

Nine out of ten cases of unrest in the north has a political tag.

Indeed, politicians have found the northern youth as the cheapest tools to effect their course. The chunk of the northern youth who are out of the classroom are often more convenient for manipulation for their egoistic interest. As a matter of fact, all political parties one way or the other exploit the northern youth. However, there are some political parties that brazenly and outrageously mortgaged their conscience to power; and will move heaven and earth to make a mess of the disadvantaged youth.

Education is said to be a great asset for it changes the entire mentality of one's view on nearly all ventures of life. For all I know is that no matter my loyalty to a political party, no politician of any standing can convince with a gun to foment chaos for his/her personal aggrandizement. My biggest worry is my dear brothers and sisters who haven't the opportunity to have access to even kindergarten education, because they have been the clear majority victims of the whims and caprices of these unscrupulous and godless individuals.

I can't just help pestering myself with the thoughts of the north.

When do we get there? Are we showing commitment of forwardness? Do we live by experience at all?

I nearly shed tears when Metro TV carried detailed profile coverage of all presidential candidates running for the 2008 elections. Nearly almost all the candidates had their children overseas (I won't mention names). I was dumbfounded by their possessions – big hospitality facilities, big communication set up and so much of “comfortabilities”. I know one day their children will return from overseas and mismanage our children. And the cycle of desperation goes on and on. Do we have what they have? No! So why must we chase one another around to fulfil their interest?

Heartless is the politician. He gave a gun to someone's child to go and kill someone's child. Where is his/her child when chaos sparks?

The child is yonder seas. The Election 2008 was characterised with sporadic gunshots from camps of political wings within the Tamale metropolis. You cannot tell me that the hungry northern youth can buy those sophisticated guns with big real dough. The GH¢100.00 plus worth of guns bought for the youth can help each to start to think positive.

Without shame, politicians went round sharing guns. This can only happen in the north. What name are they (politicians) trying to call us?

How many died just as a result of the “Elections 2008” in Ghana? My friend if it was one person, then thus a northerner. Calm in Tamale after the elections was an Act of God because I wondered where all those guns fled to.

I can only wonder a day northerners will wake up with one mind and charge at these goddamn Satan-incarnates. We have loaned our prosperity to politics and yet it brings us more pain, pain that gnaws the heart and soul. When are we learning lessons from the cataclysms born out of our short-sightedness? Please let's think!

I am patiently waiting for one eventful day; a day that a politician will give me a gun to kill my fellow brother; and I will make sure that he dies by that gun.

My household: lettered, unlettered, able, challenged, young, aged, in fact all and sundry, wake up, everyone has a task. We can no longer entertain these demons. “We are one” should be our slogan now!

Abdulai Hanan R. Confidence
[email protected]
NTC, Tamale.

Abdulai Hanan R. Confidence
Abdulai Hanan R. Confidence, © 2009

The author has 52 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: AbdulaiHananRConfidence

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