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Will Ghanaians go with Mills' accountability?

Sat, 13 Jun 2009 Source: GNA

A GNA feature by Christian Agubretu

Accra, June 10, GNA - It is said that singing one's song incessantly becomes monotonous. However, another proverb goes that if the blacksmith is hitting one spot repeatedly, he either wants the holes there to vanish or to make the surface smooth.

Similarly, President John Evans Atta Mills' repeated warning to appointees in his administration that he would hold them accountable and even dismiss them for abuse of office is sufficient to know the kind of mettle he is made of.

Invariably, he continues to advise them to be modest and know that their appointment is not a valve-gap to enrich themselves at the expense of the taxpayers.

Modesty and accountability are values President Mills cherishes and permeated his campaign message prior to his election as President. At the end of a 10-day campaign tour of eight regions in March last year, he declared: "We have no moral justification to call ourselves leaders when we throw remnant food into the dustbin while others go hungry."

The Ghana News Agency (GNA) reported then candidate Mills to have added: "We must remove greed from the Ghanaian body politic." Actually, this goes to buttress his slogan "I care for you."

"Thus the National Democratic Congress (NDC), which has its political philosophy as social democracy, will ensure the equitable distribution of the nation's resources for the welfare of every individual so that no ethnic group, region nor social grouping will feel discriminated against," he said.

When one adds President Mills' thinking to that of his then running mate, now Vice President John Dramani Mahama, who made a critical pronouncement on fair and equitable distribution of the nation's wealth, one should no doubt understand the thinking which adds vim and pep to the NDC's ideology of social democracy.

According to another GNA report Mr Mahama said at a rally at Tumu that "Ghana cannot afford to remain half rich and half poor in the midst of plenty because the country's resources could not be applied to the benefit of all".

He said the slogan "One People One Nation" would remain a mirage if the gap between the southern and the northern parts of the country continued to grow wider.

Above what the NDC said it would do in four years, it is instructive to delve into the thinking and composition of these two leaders who, like other renowned leaders, have the clear understanding of what the nation needs.

One would trust that once these two gentlemen are in power these laudable ideas would form the foundation of their government and although what they mean would not be achieved by the wink of the eye, posterity would drink from their philosophy of nation-building. The President has repeatedly said that there were many people who played significant but quiet roles for the party to win the elections. Some NDC polling agents kept vigil at polling stations and some party faithful were injured or died in motor and other accidents to and from rallies.

Others played small but significant roles and would perhaps never catch the eye of the presidency for any political appointment. There were those who were on their knees and fasted for the NDC to win the elections.

As the President said during the campaign, governance is the welfare of the people.

The predatory behaviour of some politicians and some political philosophies as if political office belongs to them, which even can be felt from a distance, should not be tolerated in President Mills' Government.

Posterity is the better judge of a man's achievements. Greatness lies not in the acquisition of immense wealth, but the use of the wealth to the benefit of the people.

All political appointees should be wary of the effect of money. Discretion as well as caution must be exercised in the acceptance of gifts, per diem, travel and other allowances not to fall in any trap by both political admirers and opponents. Ignorance or naivety is no excuse before the law. Accountability awaits all.

Let all Ghanaians rise to the occasion to work hard with efficiency and honesty to salvage mother Ghana; that the weak will be led to success, the poor will be lifted up and the ignorant will be taught, so that together we will build a better Ghana and ensure prosperity for all. 10 June 09

Columnist: GNA