Yes, just think about Ghana and the leadership we have had since independence and ask yourself if we as a people have had any effective leadership aside from Nkrumah or just politicians who came to seek and loot for their families? Ask yourself if Ghana has ever signed a single contract, or economic agreement that has benefited Ghana more than the other parties to the contracts or agreements? Sometimes I wonder whether it is sheer stupidity, or inferiority complex, or intentional sabotage of the nation that every contract and agreement that our leaders have signed since independence has always put Ghana at the short end of the stick.
From the exploitation of our rich minerals to the export of our agricultural produce and even the loans we contract, we always end up having a bad deal. We have produced cocoa for almost a hundred years, yet it is the buyers who determine the price they always pay and for hundred years, we have never had the courage and the ability to change that arrangement. We have mined gold at Obuasi, Tarkwa, Konongo and other towns for so many years but what have we gained from it? Virtually nothing. Go to Obuasi and see for yourself the state of the town and ask yourself if that is the town from which tons of gold have been taken for all these years.
Our timber resource is nothing to write home about, we have stupidly cut all our timber for export and still continue to export whilst the Sahara is fast catching up with us, yet we have nothing to show for the environmental degradation we have caused ourselves. We are experiencing serious challenges from climatic changes including unpredictable rainfall patterns, strange pests we hitherto have not known, we cannot even get quality hard wood for our own roofs. Our schools don’t have furniture and in 21st century Ghana, school pupils sit on bare floors and on blocks to learn whiles we continue to export timber to Europeans and Asians to make furniture for their schools and we wonder why their students perform better than ours. Is this a curse or stupidity?
Recently, we have been blessed with oil and the same way we gave out our gold and diamonds for peanuts and got virtually no benefit from them, we have given away our oil finds for almost free. We get only 13% from the oil resource has God blessed us with. Honestly, are we not sick as a people? In America, politicians always talk of American interest in everything they do, so my question is this; do we also have a national interest as a nation? If yes, what is our national interest? Is our national interest that of helping foreigners to loot our nation or what? I am just asking!! What is Ghana’s national interest when it comes to our engagements with foreign partners?
If our leaders were circumspect, and a little wiser, would they have watched whilst all the numerous factories established by Nkrumah gradually collapsed and some sold to friends and cronies? and yet complain of youth unemployment? More recently, numerous affordable housing projects started by J.A. Kuffour were left to rot whiles Mills/Mahama contracted new loans to start new affordable housing at Saglemi. Akuffo Addo’s government is also contracting new loans to start their own affordable housing projects whiles that of J.A. Koffour and Mills/Mahama’s own remain uncompleted and abandoned, yet we continue to service the loans they contracted to start all those projects. Because of politics, our leaders refuse to think wisely and by so doing put parochial partisan interest above national interest.
So the question I continue to ask myself is this; if after 60 years of independence Ghana is still poor, who do we blame? If I tell you that I disagree with Nkrumah’s statement that “The black man is capable of managing his own affairs” would I be wrong? At least at this moment, I am right until I am proven wrong in the near future. May we use the brains God gave us to change our destinies instead of waiting for others to do it for us. Let us develop a good sense of nationalism and stop helping foreigners to loot our nation because of a little kickback we would get. God bless our homeland Ghana.