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09.10.2019 Feature Article

An Open Letter To Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg

An Open Letter To Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg

Hello Mark,

I write to you as someone from an emerging nation - Ghana - whose hardworking and aspirational citizens, want to see the transformation of their nation into a prosperous and stable African democracy, which is a truly inclusive society. The slogan encapsulating that collective desire is: 'Ghana beyond aid.'

Unlike most of your detractors, I actually believe that your platform' can be a force for good for humankind and that its business model, could be tweaked and replicated as an e-governance model, which enables citizens to seamlessly interact with all the agencies and organizations that constitute the machinery of state of their country, and vice versa, at more or less zero cost.

Simply put, though currently unaware of that possibility, Facebook could actually help nations across Africa to digitize their systems overnight. Literally. Please do not allow today's Luddites to destroy what you have created - just because it is being misused by criminals in politics around the world and by organized criminal syndicates globally. That is not your doing. So why be punished for it, I ask? Pure nonsense on bamboo stilts.

Mark, I challenge you to think the unthinkable, in tackling the looming Luddite-existential-threat Facebook faces. Transform Facebook into a sovereign city-state, with its own currency, the Libra. How you might wonder? Come to my native Ghana, and lease the biggest island in the world's largest man-made lake, the Volta Lake, for 99 years from the government and people of Ghana - in a Hong Kong-style deal. Simple.

By offering to pay ground rent of 10 billion dollars a year to Ghana, you would be contributing to ensuring that our nation can, at the very least: provide free world-class education from kindergarten to tertiary level for its younger generations; ditto provide free universal world-class healthcare for all its people; and ensure that all Ghanaians who need it, can have access to well-designed and well-built rented accommodation, which is truly affordable.

Think of how such a win-win symbiotic relationship between the independent city-state of Facebook Republic, and the Republic of Ghana, would be - for example, the economic boom that providing the infrastructure of your city-state would create in Ghana. Finally, above all, by funding our armed forces, police and other security agencies to become potent global-power-entities, Facebook Republic will ensure its own protection from armed aggressors without having to arm itself. Go for it, Mark - and good luck to you: as Facebook faces the Luddites trying to destroy it.

Thanks.

Kofi.

Kofi Thompson
Kofi Thompson, © 2019

This author has authored 451 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: KofiThompson

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