Business in Ghana

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Outsourced Lying. Critical News, 29th March 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on March 29, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Thirty-seven years to the day Monday 30th, Ike Kutu Acheampong declared the results of his Union Government concept, which he claimed had been endorsed by the majority of Ghanaians in a general referendum, administered by then Electoral Commissioner Justice Abban, who “disappeared” for a few hours only to resurface amidst rumours he had abandoned his position.

In that giddy period, cowered Ghanaians hung on desperately for a few honest men, and in this instance, a political future hinged to the People’s Movement For Freedom and Justice, Dr. Bilson’s Third Force and the Front for Prevention of Dictatorship.

Justice Abban sought refuge with the Catholic and Methodist priests, Kojo Amissah, Hilary Senoo and Awotwe. Our democracy had been bullied into submission by the Military dictatorship of Kutu and but for the likes of the Association of Recognised Professional Bodies and some determined politicians, the nightmare of a misguided dictator, might have turned Ghana’s history a different direction.

Now we reflect on how excessive opportunity opened to another and even more vile dictator, whose self-fulfilling leadership left us with a looping history, shrouded truths in the cloaks of a revolution.

Kutu’s sole purpose was to win the Union Government idea, where no party will exist in Ghana, all politicking except his, would be banned and government would be in the hands of some so-called high council.

Well, it never happened because of a few stalwarts, but our world was taken over by the lies of Jerry Rawlings and his band of merry brigands, seeking revenge wherever. In the end they shot people without trial, abducted and murdered high court judges and “disappeared” many families with extra-judicial killings, paving the way for an annual ritual of meaningless rhetoric in an equally meaningless revolution.

Made meaningless because the same party rules us in corruption today, just as it did from 1982 to 2000.

During this period JJ and his team crafted the art of lying to Ghanaians and institutionalized corruption, making it foot-soldier perfect in a skewed political system designed to ensure perpetuity of their party. And they got this with their own padded constitution and votes.

Today Jerry John together with his wife are filthy rich, hiding their wealth in many inconspicuous places around the world.

No wonder that a paper from the vice presidential candidate of the opposition party, Dr. Bawumia evoked such a crass response from a minion of a Government deputy minister telling us who know better and have a deeper grasp of the macro and micro economic issues of this country that the man was lying to us.

What was the lie? He was accused of using incorrect figures for GDP in his analysis of the state of the economy.

I remember a farmer once accused of having stolen and killed his neighbour’s goat, stood in the dock and charged his accuser to show which hand he used to kill the goat.

“Milud, if he says I killed the goat, can you please ask him which hand I used?

“You used your right hand”

“oh ooh oh!, milud, he is lying, I used my left”

That is the stance of Government. Yes, the deficit is deep, but it does not merit such factual dissemination. That is not the point. The knowledgeable person was being deliberately dishonest with the people of Ghana and even the mention of being blacklisted is unfaithful to the people.

The argument that, creating the deficit in the first place and not paying our due debts is not the problem. The fact that the economy has tanked, but should only be considered challenged must be the preserve of Government. Unless they state clearly what their “truths” are, nobody should come and use their “untruths”.

If there is anybody in Ghana, nationals and foreigners who does not know that Government is finding it difficult to meet its financial obligations, please bow your head in shame. If there is one of you, who does not understand how precarious the debt position, please exit the border to Aflao, it is still porous and waiting for a tip to the Custom’s officials.

Occupy Ghana met with the Auditior General to find common ground before leaning on the courts to decipher the meaning of “disallowances” and “surcharge” by the auditor, as we have pushed since the last quarter of 2014.

The meeting was amicable and lasted the whole of two hours. We came out smiling and I think they did too, as it turned out not to be as frosty as they must have reckoned.

The outcome we wanted was to ensure that our interpretation of the law as provided by the Constitution, the Audit Service Act and other governing laws gives the State Auditor a lot more power than is exercised at the moment.

I think this went down well and we left with a consensus that we put more than one head together to craft a better process to collect money from thieves and stealers who think Government money belongs in their bank accounts and pockets and we will work towards a proper way to evolve the system and make things work for Ghana and the Ghanaian.

The next stages will see more determination to lasso all these miscreants.

Next we have our fight with the National Communications Authority (NCA). This Interconnect Clearing House (ICH), which we consider illegal and a veiled interference of privacy, is yet to occupy the minds of Ghanaians.

We have written twice and they (NCA) have ignored our letters. Arrogance? Impunity? They believe they do not owe anybody any obligation?

TIGO has fired its own salvo in the matter, stating that they have NEVER under-declared revenue. I wonder if the other TELCOs will also make similar public statements, because they have been accused of stealing state money and that is one of the reasons for the ICH.

In all this, I always wonder, who actually owns these companies used as vehicles for monopoly status? Who really owns FORTIZ in the Merchant Bank takeover? Who is behind Republic Bank in the HFC bank drama? Who is the true owner of AfriWave in the ICH attempted monopoly? And who controls the Pre-mix social fuel intervention? Who are the persons behind all these social safety net programs, which all seem to turn corrupt when they come under scrutiny?

Plus the others we have not heard about yet?

The NPP want affirmative action for their women in politics. They are not into female genital mutilation, witchcraft or Gay rights, or in my case “Obroni Mullato” rights; just female political rights.

Not sure I should worry too much if they want to lose some seats in Parliament. I always thought you would want to present your best candidate for a voting challenge to parliament, not necessarily male of female, but I am not a politician; good luck Otiko Djaba and team.

So if today we find ourselves stuck in another circle of lies and accusations of opposition dishonesty, it comes as nothing new. We have heard all and more before, but we have entered an era of crude lying, leaning on outsiders to bring credibility to our lies, if there is such a thing, and chastising our own because we live in different political thoughts.

By the time you read this piece, I predict Goodluck Jonathan will be out of office and General Buhari, a Boko Harram sympathizer will be in his stead.

And what difference will that make to Ghana? The conversation of ECOWAS and trade within Africa has changed. For all the years Jonathan was in power, how did Nigeria affect us, except to not deliver gas as contracted? Now we have our own gas, do we need the “419”?

Ghana is a haven for ECOWAS. If our government changes hands, then ECOWAS must show its concern for the direction of migration. We could be overwhelmed.

Until then we did the MoGo thing. The Music of Ghanaian Origin (MoGo) organized by CitiFm was such a raving success. The awards night saw Ramblers International demonstrate the age of big band can return and highlife can once again grace the dancehalls. Listening to Nana Asaase, Okyeame Kwame, Paapa Yankson, PSK Ampadu, George Spratz, Pat Thomas and a blend of the younger singers, we were mesmerized in Nana Ampadu’s “siiworiwo”.

Highlife εyε dε.

Ghana, Aha a ye din papa. Alius atrox week advenio. Another terrible week to come!

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