Oti Boateng calls for new development model
The Omanhene of New Juaben, Daasebre (Prof. Emeritus) Oti Boateng, has called for a national development model to guide the country’s medium to long term development.
He said without a development model to guide economic growth and development, the country would continue to swim in the waters of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, whose policy guidelines were necessary but not sufficient.
“We need to have a development model to guide us for the long term; this is the only way we can develop. Development must start from the grassroots. We cannot go any other way, except the home-grown way,” the Omanhene, who is also one of the 15 Commissioners of the United Nations (UN) told members of the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) at his palace in Koforidua on Sunday.
This was when IFEJ members paid a courtesy call on Daasebre Oti Boateng after a four-day training programme on Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a mechanism to promote good governance for natural resources in Ghana and other signatory countries which are implementing the system.
Speaking to the media representatives, Daasebre, who could not honour the invitation to participate in the just-ended Economic Forum in Senchi, however, was happy about the consensus on the need for a “home-grown development” model. He said he and his people had developed a development model for the country – “a bottom-up home-grown model that the country could use to move the economic development to new heights.”
Daasebre’s model, which has accompanying matrixes and ‘algorithms, will be unveiled at the Akwantukese, the festival of the people of the New Juaben State in November.
Regarded as one of the country’s best statisticians, he said development must start from the people, the communities and the grassroot; stressing that the country’s long-held top-down approach to development was inefficient, bred corruption and was completely outmoded.
“So we need a multi-dimensional model which cuts across all the society and recognises the interdependencies, which have all been outlined in my new model of development,” he said.
Daasebre Oti Boateng, who survived the 2010 Chile earthquake, started developing the model as a disaster response system for Ghana, which he fleshed out into a fully-fledged development model for the country. Daasebre and his elders have started building consensus around the model by visiting churches and mosques within the New Juaben area to sensitise them to it and also declare 21 days prayer for the model, while asking for guidance on its implementation and eventual success.
Political buy in
The eminent traditional ruler said since he was above partisan politics, he would use his unifying clout to build political consensus around the model for it to be embraced for implementation in the country since it was the panacea for the country’s growth and development.
Daasebre Oti Boateng bemoaned the high degree of corruption tendencies in the country, saying “leadership should not be actualised by avaricious tendencies.” The President of IFEJ, Mr Lloyd Evans, who led the journalists to pay the courtesy call, said the institute was formed with the support of the World Bank to deepen economic and business reporting in the country.
He said to continue with tradition, IFEJ had set out to train young and exuberant journalists in business and financial reporting, as well as the extractive industry to equip them to be better watchdogs of the country’s natural resources.