REF: AN OPEN LETTER TO WORLD BANK PRESIDENT WOLFOWITZI wish there is away I can have you forward this to the World Bank President for us.
Under normal circumstances many of us from Ghana would not bother with such news that are of global proportions and do not affect Ghana directly. It is not our culture to cause more trouble for a man when in distress. However some of us have had questions on our minds for many decades and I dare send this to you if you can forward to the honorable President for us.
We do sympathize with the troubles of the honorable President, but wonder if he can help us resolve something perhaps in this time of open disclosures and emphasis and talks about helping the poor. The recent report in the US and global news of the World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz personally approving a pay raise for his girl friend using Bank funds brings to mind many troubling questions that some Ghanaians have been asking for years as to how some of our poor nations such as Ghana got so much into debt with nothing showing for infrastructural development.
There is do no doubt in the minds of some prominent Ghanaians especially those with some knowledge of Banking and finance in the West, that a nation or organization does not incur $6.2 Billion in debt without being able to show some solid durable roads and infrastructural development such as water, roads and electricity. It is true that the Gleneagles G8 conference promised to write off a good portion of this loan, but questions still remain. During the mid 1980s to the last year or so, Ghana had accumulated this huge burden from the World Bank and other external sources, and yet Ghanaians today cannot find a single four lane well constructed highway over the last twenty years. Today Ghanaians are having power rationing because the only solid electricity generator built by Ghana's first Premier in the 1960s has reached it's limits. Over 70% of Ghanaians do not have potable water supply despite $103 million reported to be granted to Ghana in January 2005 and another $500 million reported as loans to Ghana for urban and rural water in January 2006. Where is the money!!?
Many Ghanaians and Africans are curious to find if the integrity of the World Bank leadership is something the poor nations can rely on, and especially the poor people like Ghanaians who are forced to pay duties and taxes of 100-200% on their vehicles and 12.5% sales tax and yet have to build their own water reservoirs and share rationed water. Many have wondered if the leaders of Ghana have not had some questionable relationships with World Bank leaders that have allowed them to have total control over our land whiles they get away with encumbering the nation with huge debts they do not account to the people for.
Some people have commented and wondered about what author John Perkins (2004) has revealed to the world of dubious "Economic Hit men" whose jobs have been to simply saddle poor nations like Ghana with excessive debts to break their economies, working through World Bank contracts. It is hoped that some in the West still have a conscience, a Christian conscience. We wonder if World Bank President Wolfowitz might comment on such matters for the Ghana Leadership Union in view of the excessive powers of disbursing finances he has demonstrated in the recent reports.
Kwaku A. Danso, PhD
President , Ghana Leadership Union, Inc.(NGO)