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Criminals Abound In Our Politics?

Thu, 31 Jan 2013 Source: Badu, K.

“No heart, no brains, no courage – guys, why haven’t you gone into politics?” says a cartoon of Dorothy chatting to the tin man, the scarecrow, and the lion.

For the purposes of this article, I will define Politics as “the art of science of government or governing, especially the governing of political entity, such as a nation and the administration and control of its internal and external affairs” (Oxford English Dictionary, 2007).

Politics, from Greek word Politicos, relates to the citizens. “Politics is the art or science of influencing people's beliefs on a civic or individual level, when there are more than 2 people involved. Modern political discourse focuses on democracy and the relationship between people and politics. It is thought of as the way we "choose government officials and make decisions about public policy"(See:wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics -).

Why do Politicians scramble for power?

Two things come to mind when the above question is raised. First, some people go into politics for the love of their nation. Others just want power to use as a springboard to unleash their criminalities. Inevitably, some people enter politics just to enjoy the power and satisfy their egos. On the contrary, some people are empowered by the convictions of political ideologies.

“Politics has indeed become a scorned profession, not a noble profession anymore. As a matter of fact, it takes more than good laws and institutions for democracy to thrive. And, it also takes good people—good citizens and leaders. Yet a lot of good people would never go into politics. They dislike the toxic levels of partisanship. They hate the intrusive media scrutiny. And they won’t pay the high personal costs of the political life.”

Indeed all politicians would want us to believe they want what is best for the country. Ironically, no politician will ever admit they want power. For, we would never vote for a politician who admitted “I want to be elected because I like the salary, pensions (ex gratia) and benefits, the opportunities to travel and meet interesting people, and the trappings of power!”

Yes, we don’t trust them anymore; for they are indeed taking us for a ride . Once upon a time, anyone who gained a seat in parliament was looked up to and respected by all; alas this is not the case anymore. We hear how our Parliamentarians of all the parties are yelling to take more money from us, (the taxpayers). Why must they think they deserve more remunerations than say Doctors? Yet our politicians keep spewing their vague rhetoric-‘We care for you’. But, in actual fact, they are only interested in the power and the massive remunerations associated with the job.

Perhaps our negative thinking towards politicians stems from the shenanigans and hypocrisy that accompany a job in which, in the cut and thrust of the day-to-day political encounters, one must always be right and the adversary must always be wrong. And, one always motivated by the public interest, while the adversary is motivated by base and unworthy aims.

Yes, we have deferential regard for people who have the heart to make sacrifices. Of course we hold in high esteem people who have the wherewithal to do the right thing. And we admire people who have the courage of their aspirations. Yet some politicians would betray the trust we repose in them. Why?

Regrettably, our politicians have failed woefully in the past, and still reneging on their promises. They are indeed failing to initiate expedient policies to rectify the failed policies of agriculture, food security, natural resource management, poverty reduction, resource allocation (e.g. in healthcare, education, finance, infrastructure, etc), supply chain management, humanitarian intervention logistics and security sector planning, amongst others. Yet politicians would keep on spurning discerning Ghanaians whenever they are in power.

Ironically, during the electioneering campaign, the aspiring politicians would solicit votes from the uncritical electorates with vague rhetorical political inebriations, and would only turn their backs on poor constituents when they get to their comfort zones. How pathetic!

In a nutshell, our politicians have abhorrently reneged on their promises in the past, and still reneging on their promises. They don’t care for you; they only scramble for power in order to pursue their vested interests.

We hear about dubious judgment debt payments; stashing of national funds by some greedy bastards; misappropriation of resources and crude embezzlement by some politicians, while the socio-economic living standards sinking deeper and deeper into the mire. Tell me, if such politicians are not criminally minded, what are they then?

K. Badu, UK.

Columnist: Badu, K.