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Are Ghanaians wise and serious as a people?

IMF New File photo: International Monetary Fund

Sat, 9 Jul 2022 Source: Rockson Adofo

Sorry, I don’t intend to assault the intelligence of Ghanaians but if after my critical analysis anyone finds themselves bruised, so be it.

After days of cogitation about the official announcement that Ghana is contacting the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a financial bailout to relieve the country of the pains of the economic pressure come to bear upon the citizens, I have decided to wade into the ongoing brouhaha, but as a deep thinker.

Many a Ghanaian, wise, intelligent, well-educated, and you just name it, is making a mockery of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, accusing them of hurtling to the IMF like a frightened dog with its tail tucked in-between its two hind legs, scuttling away from danger for its sheer life.

Many have gone onto social media and the airwaves airing their views in clearly a teasing manner without any shame. They are in sarcastic jubilation. They are happy that the NPP is suffering from the same problem for which they once accused the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of incompetence.

The NDC under former President John Dramani Mahama took Ghana to the IMF for an economic bailout.

One may say, regardless of the different situations that compelled both governments to seek financial help from the IMF, once they have both been to the IMF, their competencies or otherwise, are the same. They have both mismanaged the economy of Ghana hence seeking a bailout of their economy from the IMF.

Most of the people that are jubilantly mockingly seeking to score equalization points, appear to be well-educated and wise, judging from their outward postures.

While the hierarchy of the NDC and their teeming supporters believe it is a perfect chance for them to cause irredeemable damage to the credibility of the NPP in the eyes of Ghanaians to pave way for them (NDC) to come to power in 2024, others from the NPP camp have joined the chorus out of sheer bitterness for known and unknown reasons.

Be that as it may, and as wise as they seem, let it be known to them that it does not pay to jump into hasty conclusions as either wise or intelligent persons, without first, critically analysing the circumstances.

Look at the following simple mathematical explanation.

2 + 2 =4 and 10-6=4. The results of both equations are the same. They both come out as 4. However, the determinant numbers involved in both equations differ apart from the results.

Similarly, once you’ve gone to IMF, it is taken that you’ve gone to IMF, regardless. Nevertheless, different reasons as may be in the equations just stated may have compelled you to go to IMF.

Mismanaging your economy for the fact of being incompetent, insatiably greedy and corrupt, myopic, and clueless, can force you to seek help from the IMF.

On the other hand, external economic shocks that become a world phenomenon over which you can never have any, or absolute, control over, can impact your country’s economy so severely that you will obligatorily have to fall on IMF for a bailout.

During the era of the John Mahama-led NDC administration, Ghana went to IMF. It was purely down to his mismanagement of the economy whereas corrupt and obviously greedy for illegal wealth as himself, cronies, and top party members were, they somehow depleted the coffers of the nation.

Government contracts went overboard in terms of cost to the nation. They were so inflated to probably allow the officials awarding the contracts to receive some kickbacks from the contractors to whom the contracts were awarded. Take the Accra Circle interchange for example; constructed at a cost of $260 million.

The NPP going to IMF could partly be due to official corruption, the intrinsic trait of the Ghanaian politician, but principally as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. These two problems, the COVID-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war have impacted worldwide economies. This is a fact that only a big fool who is as unreasonable as they are foolishly partisan will deny it.

Being a deep thinker, I, Rockson Adofo, the proud son of Kumawu/Asiampa, like a fountain overflowing with wisdom, will never rush to draw conclusions without first examining the situation and subjecting it to critical analysis.

Some Ghanaians argue that it is not only Ghana that has suffered from the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing Russia/Ukraine war, therefore, why should Ghana go to the IMF while others are not? Fine, I perfectly understand them. But my simple question to such people reasoning childishly is, do they accept that COVID-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war have exacerbated the world economy? Again, which countries have the right to go to the IMF and when, how, and why?

In my days as a geography student, one of the reasons used to prove that the earth is spherical in shape but not flat, long before satellites were used to confirm it was, “if the earth is a member of the universe and all the members of the universe are spherical or round in shape, the earth must also be round. It cannot be the only odd one among them to have a different shape”.

Subsequently, if throughout the world, all countries are complaining of suffering from the adverse effects of Covid-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war, why must Ghana be the exemption, as it is the view and expectation of the NDC and the enemies of the NPP government?

In Europe where I live, all the countries are complaining to have suffered, and continue to suffer, from the negative ripple effects of the COVID-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war. I read this from the newspapers every day.

In the United States of America, Canada, and elsewhere, are facing the same economic downturn or collapse, all because of COVID-19 pandemic as exacerbated by the Russia/Ukraine war.

Some wise and highly educated Ghanaians are arguing, thus, why should Ghana go to IMF seeing that many countries are facing the same problems but have not gone to the IMF? Good question. However, as a Ghanaian, and Ghanaians being noted for using a question to answer a question, I will ask the following question in response to their question. When, how, why, and which countries, are allowed to go to the IMF, and for what reason?

By the way, my checks reveal that it is not only Ghana that has gone to IMF since the Covid-19 and the Ukraine war. Some African countries and other countries from other continents have been.

Out of mere jealousy, stupidity, and crazy yearning for power, quick wealth, and fame, some people, especially politicians and their sycophants, will do whatever it takes to bring their opponents or others down, using propaganda and pure lies.

Those condemning NPP for going to the IMF, blaming such a move as incompetence on their part are totally clueless about what they are talking about. They are not abreast with the situation in the world. They do not comprehend the impact of COVID-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war on the worldwide economies.

Is it not an Akan proverb that goes, “The ceiling won't stay when the room is no longer there”? When Covid-19 and the Russia/Ukraine war rip economies apart, can Ghana continue to improve her economy as though, nothing untoward had happened? No!

Those hypocrites and pretenders, please don’t rush to conclusions in order not to expose your ignorance in intellectual debates.

Should IMF never be visited for help by any country?

Ghanaians, be honest with yourselves to draw a clear line between when a president or government is being incompetent to running the economy of a country and when worldwide forces beyond anyone’s control culminate in damage to economies. They are totally two different situations!

Columnist: Rockson Adofo