Opinions Wed, 21 Jun 2017

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Can President Akufo-Addo really deliver on his promises

I just finished listening to a speech given in London by Ghana's President. There is no doubt that Nana has the right motivated spirit and vision for Ghana.

Whether he can pick up a sinking ship is another matter. Ghana has sunk too far-

- 5th dirtiest nation on earth,

- 2nd in open defecation behind South Sudan;

- modern nation with Open Gutters;

- no culture of landscaping and growing ordinary grass around houses to preserve the environment;

- no culture of building to last but rather

- untrained and unlicensed contractors who would cut corners even in building a bridge!

Why cry when Chinese bring their own workers if Ghanaian workers are poorly trained, not tested or licensed to practice electrical wiring, masonry or carpentry or metal works; and again they cannot even afford basic tools and are mostly unscrupulous!

Lets focus on some key points the President mentioned:

1. NATIONAL ID SYSTEM - promised by Oct.2017.

QUESTIONS: - Are all streets in Ghana now named with driver- readable SIGN POSTS and Houses/properties numbered?

Else - does a picture of a black face on a card at P.O.Box 39, Accra, constitute a unique ID card? and even if they thought it did, what other factors are part of the ID such that a private Bank or merchant can use it to provide credit? If the borrower defaults, would the Bank be able to trace the person and do collection?

- Would any of you loan your $500 to an old school buddy you met whose address is P.O.Box 39, Near Achimota Junction, Accra?

2. ROPAA /DIASPORA VOTING To the Diaspora Ghanaians, I am not surprised now that the govt realized again they want your capital as investment they entice you with voting! My brothers and sisters, think again!

Voting alone is not enough! You cannot stand for most offices in Ghana! Members of the Diaspora who are in retirement age be careful! There are hardly a hospital with modern equipment and medications to cater to you if you get ill. A good friend from the US on a long business trip just died a month ago in Tema, age 59!

Ghana, according to many surveyed, still has a hundred thousand dying every year from preventable malaria! and cannot fond clean well equipped.

The Police will also not protect or work for you if you need their help!

Let me ask: - how many of you in Ghana or overseas know your MP and his/her contact? - how many of you have ever communicated with an MP or Minister? - written or called or emailed and obtained a response? - how many have seen an MP who had a town hall meeting to discuss problems of the town or community? - and even if one did, did any of the promises he/she made ever come through?

Maybe some of you are lucky but I'd like to know. Even in my town of Abetifi, Kwahu, with a large number of very wealthy people, it's been 13 years since 2004, when expansion and repair works of the water system promised. I had paid about $5,000 to have a huge poly tank and metal towers to store water in a house I built for the family. Today the once per week pipe-borne water system started since Kwame Nkrumah in 1959-60, has stopped flowing! All the investment is wasted and 50 years after Nkrumah, this 4th Republic even denies these rich folks even a representative local Town Council!

How dare anybody like former President Kufuor criticize Kwame Nkrumah! Does shouting democracy alone produce water and electricity?

PLEASE if you think voting alone will give you any powers to influence change, think again! Don't BE FOOLED!

3. ON CORRUPTION: NADAA mentions statistics of corruption at our ports. We are waiting for solutions! Glad he accepts he is no expert but an Akan proverb suggests as you look for a stone to throw at a bird, he is looking for a place to jump to. Port workers are reputed to build mansions from their extortion bribery, which is encouraged by the extortionate and complicated Duties and Taxes at our ports!

- Has anybody at the ports and Harbors been sent to prison? - what happened to President Mills effort and preaching to port workers? - Why announce what you're planning to do and not wait till Plans are being implemented!

Promises are good for elections but let somebody wake up Nana that he won! He is the man with the Power and Cabinet Ministers. It is the Solutions implementation we are waiting for!

Just do the work and less talk! Thank you and may God bless Ghana!

Dr. K. Danso Jun.20, 2017 President- Ghana Leadership Union

Columnist: Kwaku A. Danso

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