Apostolic Nuncio’s Well-intended Counsel Is A bit Disappointing

Fri, 11 Nov 2011 Source: Berko, George

The Apostolic Nuncio’s Well-intended Counsel Is A bit Disappointing.

I present here a rejoinder to the Article that appeared on Ghanaweb.com from GNA on November 09, 2011, regarding the advice the Apostolic Nuncio offered to Ghanaians to promote harmonious building of our country. My initial comment to the Article via the Website’s forum was fraught with errors that the system wouldn’t let me edit. This is an attempt to reiterate the essence of that comment and expand on it a little.

In that reported counsel, the highly regarded Priest admonished all Ghanaians to eschew cynicism, cyclical and spiral mutual accusations from our Politics to allow for unity in building the Nation. As well intended as his message clearly seems to be, I found it a bit but crucially inadequate to make any significant dent in the unchanging behavior of the key players among the list of entities the Priest specifically named to receive his message—the Politicians.

There is no gainsaying the fact that it is the Politicians who ought to bear the brunt of any blame for misrule and mismanagement of our Country. The role of our Traditional leaders, even though vital, is greatly vulnerable to the whims of the Politicians who often scheme to coerce the Traditional leaders into very uncomfortable compromise, or totally render the Chiefs effeminate. The Media, without any attempt to placate their often partisan, subjectively selective way of reporting to inform the Public, also remain largely susceptible to the Politicians’ wider array of weapons to clamp down on them. The Civil Servants, rather sadly, happen to be the easiest prey of the ravaging, predatory Politicians, and just for sheer survival, often have to play pawn to these mostly elected human repositories of governing Power. All others, forming the Electorate at large, can only wield any effective influence to change cause, primarily, once every long period of an Electoral term, except an emergency referendum is successfully called for and executed.

Consequently, we see the Politicians as the single most domineering, all-pervasive oligarchic entity in our Political life. Much of our Nation’s predicament has been dumped on us by the Politicians who have, for decades after decades, misruled, misdirected, stolen from us and cunningly split us into easily crushable fronts that individually can’t save the boat while afloat in the wrong direction. The Electorate has been a victim of the Politicians’ divisive Tribal and bitter political polarization.

Year in and year out, as people suffer deepening abject poverty, as our Students graduate with fewer jobs to compete for, (even if such competition could be left alone by the Politicians to be fair), as our Hospitals and Pharmacies languish in increasing dilapidation and ghastly emptiness, respectively, as our School Children have to keep bugging the Lord with daily prayers to spare them vagaries of Weather to have dry, rainless classes under the trees and sheds, the Politicians insensitively live big and pompously off our National largesse. If anyone would need the Apostolic Nuncio’s divine-inspired admonishment to save our Nation, it is the Politicians. With the scarcity of opportunity to directly address our Political stakeholders, I would rather like to have all the attention, the counseling and any reprimand from the Apostolic Nuncio go straight to the Politicians, and the Politicians alone. I think the Apostolic Nuncio missed a golden opportunity to hold our Politicians mostly, if not solely, responsible for our Nation’s mess. He should have strongly brought it home to the Politicians that God’s patience with them is running out for their gross recalcitrance in remaining entrenched in the obscene machinations they wreak upon the Nation to keep most people living dangerously poor and unhealthy. The recent flood in our Cities and elsewhere is a current manifestation of a series of disasters the negligence of our Politicians has caused to precipitate on us. The recent Industrial Action by the Health Workers further testifies to the sinful, if not criminal, imperviousness of the Politicians’ to reason to act wisely and promptly to save the lives of our Citizens. All these, and more, subhuman conditions under which we live in Ghana have been cruelly facilitated, and worsened by the insatiable avarice of the Politicians for personal Wealth and egoistic interests.

I wonder how much the Apostolic Nuncio would concede as the threshold for chastising the Politicians. If our Politicians alone could show good enough leadership, to govern wisely, or smartly and decently poke their governing compatriots to govern sensibly with integrity, and not be motivated solely by money and cheap popularity, we might be doing very good as a Nation. It is the Politicians who divert our Resources to illicit causes. It is the Politicians who sign bogus deals to give our National treasures and Natural Resources away. It is the Politicians who seek our mandate to govern and plan our Development but repeatedly fail to make the mark in performance. The Electorate may now have the chance to choose who would be the next set of Politicians to take the mantle of leadership and do us the service we need for growth. But the Politicians through their nefarious neglect of our Education have increasingly ensured the pool from which we choose our Political leaders remain always the same in size or shrink, leaving us with fewer and fewer options. We are thus coerced to give the same Politicians many more chances and still get almost the same poor results. It is the Politicians who fail to pass our freedom of Information Act with which the ordinary folks can enforce better accountability and probity in what the Politicians do. It is the Politicians who negotiate for Loans we do not need or can’t afford to repay, just so they alone could pocket some ten (10%) cut into their hidden foreign Accounts in Bahamas and Cayman Island and Switzerland, leaving the rest of deeper in the hole and not able to find any more funds to build our needed basic infrastructure.

If the Apostolic Nuncio has been closely following our Politics with a keen eye, he would understand that the irresponsible, unpatriotic, and fraudulent behaviors among the Politicians have been continuing by leaps and bounds over the years, with no sign of changing for the better; their ‘Kalabule’ (fraudulent) way of operating has seen exponential refinement to easily obscure their ultimate selfish goals from the ordinary folks to whom they lie daily, and whose resistance they invoke Partisan and Tribal alliances to weaken.

The Holy See's eminent Ambassador to Ghana must therefore recognize that the Electorate, by merely voting for the Politicians to be their representatives, gives the Politicians the benefit of doubt and initial ‘Goodwill Capital’ the representatives need, and also shows the willingness of the Electorate to work with them.

It is the Politicians who have been repeatedly betraying the Electorates. So, the criticisms and cynicism, born by the Electorate, are deserving, and must be maintained to force the Politicians to act right. When the accusations and counter accusations are suited we should not withdraw into our shells and remain docile and mute. We should rather be more vocal to let the unfeeling Politicians know how we are hurting. After all, we don’t see the moral Authorities of our Society, the Churches and the Judiciary, especially, doing enough to alert the Politicians.

In response to the Apostolic Nuncio’s assertion that Authority comes from God, I would humbly like register my opinion that the Authority that comes from God to the Politicians is routed through the choice the People make with their votes to choose the Politicians. If the Politicians fail to recognize the responsibilities that come with that Authority and constantly abuse that Authority, the People must actively enforce both their moral and legal right to complain and hold the Politicians accountable. A relentless pressure on our Politicians is what is needed to jolt them to action. The benign, delicate prodding by the Apostolic Nuncio falls short and will be wasted on these Politicians whose hearts are ossified and their brain cells are desensitized to the suffering of the masses and the rarifying of our National fabric.

I am afraid this intervention by the Apostolic Nuncio could be easily misconstrued, (I hope it would be just that) for the long-standing objectionable tolerance of the Elites and even blatantly devious Politicians by the various members of the Clergy in our Country, while these 'Eminent' members of our Society trample on our Constitution, and steal from our National Treasury with impunity. It has been observed by many that while the Politicians have been misbehaving, the Clergy would often stay mute and watch the behavior continue, so long as the Collections from these shameless leaders keep coming in to the Offertory.

I would have liked to hear the Apostolic Nuncio admonish the Politicians more, reminding them of their duties to the Electorate and how it is a Sin to abuse their Office. The rather seemingly palliative counsel spread around to all of our Political stakeholders, instead of focusing on the Politicians, make the Apostolic Nuncio’s advice fall short of reach to the necessary target. And while such feeble admonishment might not have been intended, it falls into the category of reasons why many of us have lost hope in Religion as any effective tool for restoring morality in our Society and instilling the fear of God in people.

Our Politicians need an unmitigated moral excoriation by the Religious Authorities to re-tune them to their divine obligation to lead us with integrity and diligence. The Apostolic Nuncio should have cracked his moral whip at our Politicians, and not offered them a diplomatic massage of their gaping iniquities.

Long Live Ghana!!!

Columnist: Berko, George