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05.05.2020 Opinion

Why Ghanaians Owe Mahama A Reelection Apology

By Abdul Hakeem Iddrisu
Why Ghanaians Owe Mahama A Reelection  Apology
LISTEN MAY 5, 2020

Fellow Ghanaians, now that Vice president Dr. Bawumia surfaces from his cocoon to ask us to compare their leadership with that of former President Mahama's, in terms of better management of crisis, the matter is eventually settled between them.

Dr. Bawumia has really answered himself regarding former President Mahama's economic management and the rest of other African countries he compared the Mahama's administration within his multiple economics lectures in the build-up to the 2016 elections.

According to Dr. Bawumia, it was an internally generated crisis, not by President Mahama or his NDC government, but an inheritance from the NPP government under former President Kufuor in which Dr. Bawumia served as a member of the economic management team, that was responsible for Ghana's Dumsor situation under President Mahama.

If that is the case, why did Dr. Bawumia create the impression as if the economic nosedive which was created by Dumsor that the NPP government massaged and couldn't fix while in office at the time, happened as a result of Mahama's incompetence, a problem Mahama actually solved?

Now Dr. Bawumia wants us to compare internal crisis (Dumsor) of four years from 2004 to 2008 that caused economic meltdown, which he gladly compared to economies of other countries in Africa that didn't have same power challenge, to the impact of external crisis (corona virus) which other countries, face!

As for the Dumsor of four years, President Mahama fixed it, why must we compare lip service by Akufo Addo about a crisis (corona virus) of over two months old that continues to escalate, to that of a crisis (Dumsor) that lasted more than eight years?

Undoubtedly, activities of politicians, and for that matter leadership in our dear country, has become unappetizingly flavorless to many observers.

One does not require an Afrobarometer's report to appreciate that majority of Ghanaians have lost great deal of both interest and confidence in our political space over the last four years under the unable stewardship of President Akufo Addo.

Every now and then, Ghanaians rotate their gazes, shake their heads in disbelief, and continue to ventilate their spleen of hopelessness about the manner our collective affairs has been managed with the now disappointing and dissatisfying slogan: "all politicians are the same" chorused.

However, I personally beg to differ on this score. And certainly, majority of Ghanaians are also not subscribers of this political philosophy. We may make mistake to have mistaken "political devils" for "angels" which is normal for any mortal to do, but many Ghanaians never hold the view that all politicians are the same.

They are certainly selfless politicians who are actually concerned about the real growth of their country and what legacy it is that they shall bequeath to the next generation.

And of course, there are the political "useful idiots" and very selfish politicians whose main concerns never bother on the future of the country which they get the chance to govern out of electoral miscarriage.

And I trust in His magnanimity, God would never be that too unkind to Ghanaians and deny us the former group of politicians amidst these "scramble for public treasury" group of leaders, by hook or by crook.

Fellow Ghanaians, with all components of common sense at anybody's command, the discerning among us can certainly tell, from the activities of our leaders, those who are really governing with compassion, positive vision with transparency, probity and accountability (integrity, a moral commodity that has been in short supply in Ghana since 2017).

In my previous articles published on Ghana web, I described president Akufo Addo as probably the most vilified man in Ghana when his claims of being in hurry met forces of the main opposition with every intellectual energy they could lay their hands on. I even asked President Mahama to shelve his second coming ambition because we were made to believe the man is incompetent. God forgive me.

I was dead wrong for supporting the man (Akufo Addo) against President Mahama. For he was in hurry for destruction which I later came to appreciate.

It was not my fault, sometimes one needs to catch a cold or develop a boil on his buttocks in order to appreciate the greatest wealth of health in life.

Fellow Ghanaians, literally, I threw a punch in the air when President Akufo Addo declared the construction of 88 hospitals this year alone, to combat the deadly Covid 19 pandemic. I had to debate myself to reconcile his Finance Minister Hon. Ken Ofori Atta's declaration of this year as a year of roads in that 419 2020 budget presented to the House of Parliament and what the President said, when the government doesn't have the capacity to provide adequate PPE for health workers.

Thus, the President, in the nutshell, vindicated former President Mahama that Ghana really needs infrastructure first and foremost before reckless stomach infrastructure to grow phantom economy. That every reasonable government must pursue it even if it has to compromise the comfort of the citizens.

Exactly what former President John Dramani Mahama envisioned, and determined to pursue which he did and became the greatest villain of our national body polity. But I think the chicken has finally come back home to roost.

Fellow Ghanaians, we were all in this country when the NPP said President Mahama was incompetent because of his vision to invest in infrastructure ranging from building roads to world class Interchanges, etc.;

They badmouthed him because he said it was not sensible to be borrowing money to pay allowances;

They accused him of borrowing too much because of the 40 billion he invested in these infrastructural projects that were definitely going to create jobs upon completion for the teeming graduates, that included hospitals, schools, roads, revamping of factories, Airports, etc.

The NPP even quarrelled with President Mahama's spartan lifestyle, simplicity and sense of prudence for choosing Toyota over BMW; They accused him of corruption which "started since Adam" and yet, corruption under their watch has become a household name today though strongly deodorized and insulated.

Today, after almost four years in government, President Akufo Addo's legacy can be best adjudged as dead on arrival. All his sugarcoated projects he borrowed money on behalf of Ghanaians to undertake, are more scandalous than his largest government itself.

Have you seen the dams?
Fellow Ghanaians, it will only be a courtesy of a gentleman for those of us who really bought into the "incompetent tag" levelled against the former President by then candidate Akufo Addo, because he made infrastructure the building blocks of his government, to sincerely apologize to him by electing him back to office. The wanton borrowing must stop!

Indeed, there were many of us who made a quick U-turn from that deceptive and smear campaign bandwagon led by the government against President Mahama, having realized we were persecuting an innocent man. But I think it is not enough. Let every man who lampooned president Mahama, find the humility to publicly render an unqualified apology to him.

Daddy, we are very sorry. Forgive us this political trespass. You were right. God brought the NPP to power in order to justify your innocence for what they accused you of. And indeed, for Ghanaians to actually judge between real public officials and political gangsters!

If Akufo Addo didn't become President and Dr. Bawumia didn't get to appreciate the difference between organizing streets economics lectures as a running mate, and what it takes to actually marshal a country's economy in the right direction, they both would have had their names inscribed in gold in the pantheon of our national history. Posterity is indeed a just judge.

Personally, it took a political role model to explain to me I was actually fighting a friend and not an enemy. And that, I am yet to experience diarrhea leadership under Akufo Addo to appreciate the leadership of President Mahama. How true he was.

I trust they are many young colleagues of mine out there who are also under this optical illusion of wicked political mudslinging employed by the government to perpetually tarnish the image of former President Mahama because of mere "spoil of office".

Let every youth wake up from their long slumber of NPP's deception to help rescue their future from their self-serving and self-seeking government.

Let no youth of this country buy into their so-called economic growth. It's a gargantuan scam, a world class deception ever propagated, to say the least.

Note that the international community report what they are told to see and report on. They really don't care what constitutes such a silver lining.

And to have a quick and vivid understanding of that lazy man approach to economic management by the NPP, my fellow young Ghanaians should take a look at the national debt stock in 2016 under President Mahama, and how much is it currently?

President Mahama left it at around 122 billion in 2016, from 82 billion when he took over office in 2013.

As of September through November 2019 last year, according to the Bank of Ghana, the national debt stock meandered its way from 122 billion cedis to over 208 billion in less than three years! And this is chiefly the magic that brought about their so-called economic growth.

Space won't allow me to define GDP growth which is responsible for a country's economic growth. However, simply, GDP takes into account all economic output in a country. Hence, economic growth is realized when there's an increase in production of goods and services.

Commonsensically, there won't be increased production of goods and services if there's no money in the system or if money is left sitting in banks without being put to use.

We can infer from the above that if there's distribution of much cash among citizens, likely their purchasing power would have been increased. And once they continue to buy, production has to go up definitely in order to meet the high demand. Payment of services rendered by employees hired to produce more would have gone up as well.

So, here what the one in charge of such a system (government) needs to do is to keep the money flowing to the people so that they would continue to buy so as to increase production of goods and services, and in effect, an economic growth is realized!

The question now is, where or how the government would get the fund, and how rapid and voluminous it would get it?

The two fundamental ways are either through "revenue generation" or borrowing. And a government that finds ways of generating revenue without having to borrow much can claim competence.

In this scenario, the bigger the cash you borrow to govern as a government, the more incompetent you are because anybody can do that.

Between President Mahama and both Akufo Addo and Dr Bawumia put together, who is more incompetent, considering how much they have borrowed and what they have achieved with that money and the relevance of those achievements to the people Ghana?

Remember that Akufo Addo now sees the need to build hospitals. How could a competent president be obsessed with flying drones without hospitals?

Nevertheless, let's assume you the reader has all of a sudden received an amount of 100 million cedis free of charge. Be honest, can't that change your life financially with your bank balances soared, and with relatively quality and expensive clothes, furniture, cars, etc., that would have changed your social class?

But wait a minute. Imagine that money was borrowed. Would you have used it for such things as expensive clothes, furniture, cars, etc. in order to brag?

And with all resources of common sense at your possession, would you reasonably borrow such a huge sum of money to do that if you would be the one to pay it later with dire consequences if you later can't pay?

Now, assuming that money were to be paid by your children and grandchildren, would you still do that for them to pay? And should you be called a good parent if you borrow such a huge sum of money on their behalf in order to amass expensive things with huge bank accounts, merely for people to praise you so that your progeny yet unborn shall settle the debt on your behalf?

Okay. Imagine some natural disaster (corona virus) suddenly strikes and everything amassed out of this borrowed money perished, be honest, would you have still given such a parent the opportunity to further borrow for his vain desires so that you pay the debt later?

Ah, this is the classic example of Ghana under Akufo Addo. Ghana has been led to receive over 86 billion as of September last year, and almost more than over 104 billion cedis, ballooning the national debt profile from 122 to over 220 for you and I to come and pay.

Fellow youngsters, this is the pious-fraud economic growth the NPP government has done and say we should praise it and possibly, allow it another four years to misgovern us. May God forbid!

With almost four years of this mouthwatering economic growth that now collapses in stages due to the pandemic, and President Akufo Addo now sees the need to build 88 hospitals in less than a year, it is only appropriate that Ghanaians find the humility to apologize to former President John Dramani.

Perhaps, who knows, the government may have been punished by God for painting former President Mahama black to us which we actually bought into with alacrity. May God forgive us.

The pandemic has certainly taken us back to square one! It is why the vice President has suddenly appeared from his hideout.

Ladies and gentlemen, they are those who keep asking what at all would President Mahama do again? In the first place, Ghana needs him more than PPE. Secondly, he would come back to lead this country to charter a nobler economic development path that would create opportunities for all, by striking the fine balance between realizing our greater tomorrow (attainment of development status) and increasing the living standard of all citizens today.

We cannot continue to borrow money to grow economies that collapse at the pinpricks of natural disasters because they were grown out of consumption.

Long Live Ghana.
God Bless Incoming President Mahama with the wisdom to lead us out of this Mafia state of affairs.

Abdul Hakeem Iddrisu
(The Young Prof.)

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