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23 July 2016

The final whistle

President John Mahama sittingWhile “dumsor” rages and I am in a battle to restore my health, others are insulting Supreme Court judges and expecting to get away with it because they have tagged themselves as belonging to the government communications team and suffering from “kpokpogbligbli”; a bunch of nefarious persons given a license to insult anyone.

I always wondered why this motley crew of half-baked literates doesn’t have any women in the team.

The incident on Montie by two radio panelists, Godwin Ako Gunn and Alistair Nelson as well as presenter Salifu Maase, known as Mugabe, were cited for inciting hatred against and threatening to kill, Justices of the Supreme Court.

Montie FM is an NDC local language station, I understand it was started simply to match a counterpart called Oman Fm, which is rumored to favor the NPP party and is sympathetic to the party leader, Nana Addo.

At the Supreme Court, lawyers introduced Edward Addo, Kwesi Kyei Atuah, Kwaku Bram-Dabi as Montie FM directors. Mr. Harry Zakkour told the court he only owns the frequency but does not play a role in daily programming on the local language station.

What I am grappling with now is whether the persons involved in the threats were fully aware that a charge of contempt against the Supreme Court is about as much trouble as you can get into as far as the law is concerned.

Anyway, they said what they thought they would do and spent their waking hours and awake night time opera hours, ducking and diving bailiffs and pleading leniency from the Justices.

I think the Supreme Court has itself to blame to some extent as their “akomfem” come home to roost. They could have acted more positively some time back when someone claimed he could find several ways of killing a cat in reference to a decision made in one of the many trivial court cases we have to fight because some persons can’t see the wrong from right in this country.

My beef with the way politics is done in the country now is simple. Example. When the NDC found out how painful a case for election could be, how long it can drag when you try to manipulate all stakeholders and the pressure it places on the economy, couldn’t it see that what would be best for the country was to fix the election process, including retiring the electoral register and putting a new one in place using national ID cards?

And why did the NPP party when they were in power between 2001 and 2008 not do something about this identity system? They had the means, they knew the problems it would solve, they had just come out of the opposition gutter and had, for many decades complained bitterly about what a nuisance it was to be on the backbench.

If either of these parties had taken the bull by the horns and fixed this problem, neither would be complaining and people of this country wouldn’t have thrown their votes and time into a nothing election.

The insincerity that both parties have shown in the past, more the NDC than the NPP, tells the citizens of this country in very glaring terms that this fight for democracy is not about them because it is a fight in anti-democracy, an attempt by the NDC party to retain itself in authority no matter the toll it places on Ghanaians.

Look at the way the voters register has been trashed for no good reason. It has taken a pair of good citizens to carry their pent up anger all the way to the Supreme Court in order to compel the Electoral Commission to do what it has, by mandate, the full authority to do and resolve so we can sleep easy and not complain about an impending constitutional crisis.

Now we are talking about possibly not having enough time to get all the laws signed off and passed by Parliament in time for the voting to happen in November 2016.

If there is some diabolical plan to squeeze time so brutally that it will reach a point of inelasticity such that we have to trundle into a constitutional crisis and extend the term of the non-performing Mahama government, then I think some persons have another thought to think.

We cannot and will not accept that our blunderers in not making proper decisions at the proper time should push us into an eternal spiral of law cases ending in stalemates as the combatants split the radio waves with arguments of whether “I won,” is the only resolve that the court is set up to achieve.

The week gone has been captured with contempt and the resurrection of “dumsor”, which the President wishes to “ostrich” into oblivion. The so-called load shedding is back in full force and this time we know it is purely a matter of money.

We have excess generation capacity, we are paying suppliers enormous sums of money for doing sod all and this Government has succeeded in bringing one of the best run institutions in the country to a brink of collapse.

The Volta River Authority is running five feet below its riskiest level, it cannot pay its debts, is soon to be responsible for the collapse of a bank or thirteen, and back room negotiations have resulted in shareholders taking a loss on income while the future generation are once again lumbered with the incompetence of the Government’s financial team, led by Seth Terkper.

Government has asked the creditor banks to reduce domestic debt rates by 10% and foreign rates by 3.5%. They have also been bullied into accepting that they stretch the payment periods into the future and palm that off to the “unborn child”.

That they agreed to do so, is a tacit acceptance of the fact that interest rates are way above justifiable in the country and the banks have gouged the tax payer of his meager earnings for way too long.

Somewhere along the line, some responsible and smart person has to find a break in the chain fence and free the economic knots that prevent us from becoming a country with realizable potential. Maybe a new party? A new system of governance altogether?

A complete overhaul of the way we elect leaders and get rid of them if they don’t perform to satisfaction? Maybe some other draconian measures that can ensure that not too many jokers end up in Parliament and as ministers.

But look at it this way: Until the final whistle is blown, opposing sides cannot determine who or not lost the match. Politicians like to gloat over their opponents. That seems to be the key ingredient of the beast we have to contain. When it is all over and done with, the end result has to be to the benefit of the citizens of this country.

That truism that the psyche of the black politician is molded to self-fulfillment and not service to citizens of the land who have the ultimate authority, is a fight yet to be won in some sort of social revolution, to wrestle back control over our lives and knocked out the window of incompetence.

Somewhere in the end, when the whistle goes, we should be the ones with the last laugh and not the jokers who brand themselves men of honor.

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

Writer’s e-mail: sydney@bizghana.com

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