Don’t despise ethnic groups - Isaac Osei to Ghanaians

TOR Isaac Osei CEO of the Tema Oil Refinery, Isaac Osei

Sun, 26 Mar 2017 Source: mynewsgh.com

Chief Executive Officer of state-owned Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), Isaac Osei has admonished Ghanaians not to undermine tribes they perceived as minority ethnic groups in the country.

According to him, the negative phenomenon in which some people see their ethnic groups as superior and perceive others as inferior, may lead to stereotyping and this could affect the country’s unity.

“Respect for each other irrespective of tribe is the beginning of the acceptance of other ethnic groups. The collective ideas and energies of our people have to be harnessed for our country’s development,” he maintained.

Mr. Osei, a former CEO of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) and one time Ghana High Commissioner to the UK made the observation in a lecture to mark the 90th Anniversary Celebration of Achimota School in Accra.

The celebration was on the theme: “Ethnicity in Our Political Development- Learnings in a 60-year Journey.”

Mr. Osei, a member of 1968 year group of Achimota School observed that ethnicity has always been part of Ghana’s political history.

He recounted how successive Heads of State since independence have been accused of making political appointments in favour of their tribes.

Mr. Osei entreated Ghanaians to allow Presidents to appoint competent people even if such appointees are from their ethnic groups.

“Politics is an area where appointing authorities like presidents choose those they believe can do a job for them to enable them fulfill their promises to the electorate, to assist them in realizing their visions.

“I will say to any head of state that within the limits of the law, select anybody who is qualified even if you find such a person in your kitchen but be prepared to face the consequences of your action,” he said.

Mr. Osei noted that Ghana’s problem has been ethnocentrism or tribalism where people develop a fanatical attachment to their tribes and think that others are less important.

“So long as procreation continues, there will always be different ethnic groups in Ghana. Our problem is not because of our being Bono, Akuapem or Ewe…our problem is ethnocentrism or tribalism where people develop a fanatical attachment to their tribes that they think other ethnic groups are not quite like them so they should be looked down on.

“When you begin to think that it is only your ethnic group which has amassed all the good gifts which providence has bestowed on man and that another ethnic group has monopolized all the negative traits in man, then we get into the realm of stereotyping,” Mr. Osei, a former Member of Parliament for Subin in Ashanti region stated.

Ghanaians, he admonished, must accept that ethnicity is a fact and there is nothing anyone can do about it.

“No one asked to be born a Dagarti, Fanti or Krobo…and no one can decide to become an Asante, Kusasi or Kokomba if one is not born as such.

Mr. Osei said what is important is for the country to build an opportunity society where government does not dictate but empowers all citizens attain their full potentials irrespective of their ethnicity, political affiliation or social standing.

Source: mynewsgh.com