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01.10.2005 Politics

The politics of winner takes all impedes development - Adei

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Accra, Sept 30, GNA - Professor Stephen Adei, Rector of the Ghana Institute of Management Public Administration (GIMPA), observed on Friday that the "winner takes all" attitude adopted by ruling political parties in the country was the biggest obstacle to development. He said the country needed to move quickly from the state of stabilization to growth-oriented development agenda and that demanded the collective effort of all, regardless of political affiliation. Addressing the 13th edition of the Presidential Luncheon by the Institute of Chartered Accountants (ICA) Ghana, in Accra he said: "Sustaining the progress over 20 to 30 years in a democratic dispensation required both sides of the divide to agree on national priorities.

"The time is now and if politicians will not do (it), civil society must mobilize itself to impose it."

Prof. Adei expressed disgust at instances where capable and intelligent public servants and private people were sidetracked unless they demonstrated political sycophancy. "Unduly short-sighted adversary politics devoid of national consensus and priorities is not healthy." He called for the mobilization of the citizens behind the development agenda and dealing with obstacles to realise the vision effectively.

Prof. Adei noted that the country needed a clear-cut development agenda, as the visions pursued over the years had not yielded the optimal result and queried, "What happened to vision 2020? Is vision 2012 or 2015 myopic?"

Senior Minister Joseph Henry Mensah charged the academia to complement the effort of government to source financial resources to move the county out of economic instability into prosperity. He said it was not enough for the think tanks to suggest fine ideas and new development paradigms but they should also help mobilize financial resources. "After independence the country has not been able to develop expeditiously due to financial constraints". Mr Mensah contended that Sir Gordon Guggisburg was able to execute the development agenda at his time because he had sufficient backing from the income earned from cocoa and gold.

He expressed optimism that the debt forgiveness and the capital inflow from Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) would strengthen the kitty of government to carry out developmental programmes. "We have set out ambitious goals based on the needs and the aspirations of the people yet they are all being stifled by inadequate funds to execute them to the fullest."

He said the country in its current state lacked the requisite technology to catch up with the developed world adding that we need to build our human capacity coupled with science and technology to get out of the economic quagmire. Prof. Ato Ghartey, Vice President of ICAG, said the country was gradually moving to a state of economic prosperity and urged all Ghanaians to support government to make it a reality. He pledged the Association's commitment to providing the necessary support to make the country reach middle-income status in the not too distant future.

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