By. Jones Kwesi Tagbor
Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the founding father of Ghana’s independence would by now regret for giving the black man power. Nkrumah felt the black man was capable of managing his own affairs but the opposite is true. Why do I say so? Ghana, after sixty years and counting after gaining independence can still not boast of managing it’s own affairs. I don’t know if it is because the black man didn’t understand what the visionary leader said. Permit me to quote some few lines of what he said on the day of declaring independence.
“…. I am depending upon the millions of the country, and the chiefs and people, to help me to reshape the destiny of this country.
We are prepared to pick it up and make it a nation that will be respected by every nation in the world.
We know we are going to have difficult beginnings, but again, I’m relying upon your support, I’m relying upon your hard work.
Seeing you in this, it doesn’t matter how far my eye goes, I can see that you are here in your millions and my last warning to you is that you are to stand firm behind us so that we can prove to the world that when the African is given a chance he can show the world that he is somebody!
We have awakened. We will not sleep anymore. Today, from now on, there is a new African in the world!
That new African is ready to fight his own battles and show that after all, the black man is capable of managing his own affairs.
We are going to demonstrate to the world, to the other nations, that we are prepared to lay our own foundation.”
Should we say the Ghana we see today can be respected by the rest of the world as Nkrumah presumed? Is Ghana still at the beginning stages after independence? Are we sure we are awake and will not go to sleep again? These and many questions beg the black man for answers.
After sixty years of independence, Ghana has now come to a stage of lawlessness where citizens take the laws into their own hands. Hooliganism, corruption, self-fishness, disrespect for authorities, favouritism and nepotism among others is what we live with as an independent state.
Where is the peace Ghana do boast of? Is peace the absence of war? You claim you are the role model to other African states when it comes to peace while an individual cannot walk freely on the street? The dailies are flooded with cases of murder and looting. Our judicial system gradually influenced by politicians. “We” as against “them” has become the language of the land. Winner takes all government system. A graduate from the out group must join the propaganda train to reach the point where his or her group comes into government before he or she gains employment.
Was this what Nkrumah and his people sacrificed and fought for? Our politicians will promise us heaven and deliver hell to us. Dr. Kwame Nkrumah in his speech called on the chiefs and people of this country to come together to reshape the destiny of this country. He didn’t say the politician or the president.
Today, our chiefs sit behind and see the rich resources of the land destroyed and they seem to careless about it.
We have the resources that can make us be a very worthy nation but until the white man who we were running away from some years ago comes to our aid with a double edged sword, we can never develop our own resources. We claim we have oil, what percentage of that oil revenue belongs to Ghana? Who are the human resource at the oil site? Do you think the white man is so kind to the extent of leaving his country and come to develop your country for you and go back freely? Certainly not. They give with the left and take with the right. Let’s be wise as a country.
The black man is referred to as lazy. Well, I don’t disagree. If we live in a country where absenteeism from work, lateness to work, misappropriation of funds, carelessness to government property and enjoyment of holidays are what entices us then why should I disagree with that assertion?
We can only develop as a nation if we take the words of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah serious and change our attitude towards work. We go to work late and close before time. Even at work, we pay more attention to our smart phones than the work we are to do. People even use government properties as their own properties. Unnecessary use of electricity etc.
Our education system is now being kicked like football on the field of politics. We can’t have a persistent and comprehensive education policy that can transform the bookish education system we experiencing today. No wonder we regard the foreign certificates than the home acquired ones. For crying out loud, Ghana is sixty years old and counting. I challenge the president His Excellency Nana Addo to stand firm and move this country forward by being truthful to the Ghanaian people and bring every corrupt public office holder to book. Thank God he challenged us to be citizens and not spectators. I’m just being a citizen.
To our chiefs and elders, Ghana is our mother land, no one can make it develop for us unless we ourselves. Please use your authorities you have devoid of politics and help reshape Ghana as Nkrumah charged you to do. The time is now.
I took the pain to visit a community in the South Tongu District of the Volta region. Kudzekope, a sub of Sogakope. This is a very big community with a Chief and other opinion leaders. They have an assembly man and all you could think of. Just come and have a look at how they allowed their water body to be destroyed by selfish individuals due to sand winning and stone queering activities. Now the source of drinking water has become a death trap. People fetch and drink poison instead of water. The chiefs and opinion leaders careless and rather calling on government for infrastructure development. If you can’t manage the little you have, how can you manage the bigger one if given? Can the black man manage his own affairs at all?
Let me leave you with this part of Dr. Nkrumah’s speech. Please read through the lines and make meaning out of it. Indeed Nkrumah was a visionary leader.
“As I said in the assembly just minutes ago, I made a point that we are going to create our own African personality and identity. It’s the only way that we can show the world that we are ready for own battles.
But today, may I call upon you all – that on this great day, let us all remember that nothing in the world can be done unless it’s had the purport and support of God.
Our independence is meaningless unless it is linked up with the total liberation of Africa.
Let us now, fellow Ghanaians, let us now ask for God’s blessing, and for only two seconds in your thousands and millions, I want to ask you to pause only for one minute and give thanks to almighty God for having led us through our difficulties, imprisonments, hardships and suffering to have brought us to the end of our trouble today.”
Sixty years of independence has our troubles really come to and end? Ghana must work again. Let us wake from our sleep and regain the Ghana we all desired for. Love, they say conquers all. Let us love one another and together, we shall rise to the occasion.
#Say no to illegal mining
#Say no to mob justice
Say no to corruption
#Say no to laziness
#Say no to winner takes all governance
Written by Jones Kwesi Tagbor.
Founding member, FirstCare Ghana.
Author of Jones Series publications.