Did My President Goof With His Dead Goat Syndrome?


You can make your choice – either to laugh or to get angry. The raucous in Ghana, after the President’s statement in Botswana that he is a dead goat and does not fear knife is not going to stop anytime soon.

Many people are giving different interpretations to an innocuous statement from the President, in fact a statement of fact that has haunted many of our past leaders and has thrown this country out of economic gear.

It is a fact that in election year, we outspend the budget. It is a fact that in election year, various labour unions take advantage of the period to demand more than the state can afford, because the President is seeking for an extension of his mandate. It is a fact that over the years past leaders have pandered to the wishes of the labour unions. It is a fact that in 2012, for whatever reasons and demands we spent so much that this country almost grounded to a halt after the election.

Because of propaganda and unbridled cynicism, we will rather waste our time in discussing and condemning the abstract in that statement instead of concentrating on the substance of what the President really said.

The President said a lot of things, when he met the Ghanaian community, central to his speech, was the fact that 75 percent of Ghanaian households have access to good drinking water.

The President never said he was not going to pay heed to genuine concerns and demands from labour unions, but rather some of the outrageous and ridiculous demands we have witnessed and which had them embark on strike actions or demonstrations.

For political convenience and cheap propaganda, we waste precious time talking about issues that do not put food on the table of Ghanaians.

This is a common aphorism that we all used to say growing up, it has become part of our everyday language, so what difference does it make, if our President uses it.

The argument could be that he is the President and must choose his words carefully, granted but I think our problem in this country and by extension Africa is that, we have created demi-gods out of our leaders, we think of them as walking on water and raising the dead. When it comes to them they are infallible, they do not and cannot
make mistakes.

Until we disabuse our minds of that thought, we will be placing them and expecting from them, what they cannot offer us.

The President spoke like a human being, who also has concerns of his own. He is the Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces, what he hears and knows, a lot of us
criticizing him today, do not have an inkling, he does not speak out of a vacuum. We do not know the report, he has for which reason he said what he said.

To be fore warn is to be fore armed. He was only sending a message to the various labour unions that he is now impervious to their strikes and demonstrations. If they are planning to embark on demonstrations and strikes to press home their demands for better service, which are sometimes outrageous, they better think twice.

He did not say that nobody should not go on demonstration or declare a strike action, and I do not think that the President is not able to tell a genuine demonstration or strike.

Recently, when the New Patriotic Party embarked on the “Agbe Wo” demonstration, the President in all humility said that the demonstration had emboldened him. It was as a result of that, that when he delivered his State of the Nation Address, he said that he does not intend to manage the crisis, as has been done in the past, but he will
fix it.

We can agree to disagree with the President that is our prerogative; he also has the same right to his opinion, although sometimes not palatable to some people.

I did not see anything wrong in what the President said, some people in this country from the word go, have sworn to make the country ungovernable for him. This was
implied and made known to him, when his election was challenged at the Supreme Court. I can safely say, without fear of contradiction that the number of strikes and demonstrations witnessed in the last three years has been unprecedented. A simple issue that can be solved with a handshake had seen labour unions go on strike.

Research and Book Allowance, which was given to Lecturers to enhance their work, when government sought to vary it with the introduction of a stable Research Fund, our
Lecturers who should know better embarked on strike, how do you justify such a strike action, it was an unnecessary strike and waste of everybody’s’ time, especially students. At some point instead of solving problems, they were rather creating more problems for everybody.

The President spoke the mind of many people, who have gotten tired of Labour Unions, holding everybody to ransom. We should remember that if all the money in the world was given, one cannot spend it in a day and certainly one will never be satisfy.

We can pummel the President, for as long as we want and time will allow us, but the President did not err, unless of course we are saying that a dead goat fears knife.
My President, John Dramani Mahama, did not goof. All I can say to those who have found fault with what he said is that, let those unto whom it is giving understand.

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