Over the weekend, the President John Dramani Mahama, at the 2014 National Prayer and Thanksgiving Service at the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Accra he bemoan Ghanaians for being overly pessimistic, he said and I quote, ““Let us eschew pessimism, we must count our blessings and our successes and we must continuously ask God why are we so blessed; it is only with such a positive frame of mind that we can overcome any challenge facing us,’’ he said.
‘’We have become a nation of pessimists; every day we are bombarded with everything that is wrong with our nation, never with what we are doing right…,’’ he added.
Now Mr President, this is me being optimistic and believing more in Ghana. For two months the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG), have been on strike and like the typical Ghanaian attitude, we make noise for two days or at most a week, and it is back to business as usual. Students have had to abandon their studies and come home, because the government is not interested in getting the teachers back into the classroom.
This is me being optimistic Mr President, never in the history of this country have we experienced erratic and unrealistic power crisis than we have done in the past two years. Since 2012, the crisis has gone from the act of God, to low water level to broken down transformers.
Every day, we are told of a different excuse or reason why we cannot get uninterrupted power supply to feed our home s and industries.
We tout ourselves of being a middle income country, yet power that is essential in ensuring that we sustain our new found status is not available. The Bui Dam, which was also expected to augment the Akosombo Dam, has also become a white elephant or as a colleague referred to a standby generator. We cannot continue to pay lip service to the basic of needs of Ghanaians and expect them to be optimistic.
Mr President, this is me being optimistic, the local currency has depreciated within one year, more than it has done since we ushered in the 1992 Constitutional dispensation, if am not mistaken, since we attained Independence in 1957. The Cedi depreciates on a daily basis; this has led to the escalation of prices of goods and services. We are a people who have developed the taste for foreign goods and so it stand to reason that anytime our currency depreciates, we will need more of it to buy the Dollar, our major trading currency to enable us import.
It is said that every misfortune is a blessing, any serious nation going through this currency crisis, will have recognized that the only to prevent any future occurrence is to start promoting and encouraging people to patronize made in Ghana goods. We need to invest and build local capacity.
I was sad that at the 2014 Thanksgiving service, where the President asked Ghanaians to eschew pessimism and be optimistic, he was wearing a foreign shirt and a suit, this was on a Sunday, when he was expected to at least appear in a local fabric. The day, he was telling us to be optimistic; he was putting money into the pocket of a foreigner and getting their people to work.
The president must reduce his taste for foreign cloth, it is becoming too much.
This is me being optimistic, Mr President, the success or otherwise of a leader, depends largely on the people he appoint to help him prosecute his agenda, unfortunately for you, you have too many square pegs in round holes as Ministers.
Some of your Ministers, do not have what it takes to head a Ministry, the result of their incompetence is what we are all witnessing. The much talked about reshuffle, has being coming, but in bits and pieces, and it is becoming clearer that you have run out of options. You reshuffle a non-performing Minister and instead of asking the person to go home, you instead reassign them, it leaves well-meaning Ghanaians wondering whether your party, The National Democratic Congress (NDC) that brought you into power has no men capable of helping to steer the affairs of the nation, even when things are getting out of hand. We need you to be a ruthless pragmatist.
Mr President, I am optimistic and this is me expressing it, members of your party the NDC are disgruntled, you should just belong to one of their groups on social media and you will understand and appreciate what am talking about. They have lost faith in your ability to deliver the 2016 election to them. They think you have not shown enough leadership to warrant their support, this is the question they ask, what
message are we presenting to Ghanaians come 2016? The clock is ticking and they are waiting for the answer.
In 2006, the Senior national team, the Black Stars qualified for the first time in our country’s history to represent us at the world cup in Germany. They gave a good account of themselves and made us proud.
In 2010, when the festival was hosted for the first time in Africa (South Africa 2010), we qualified and made it through the group stages to the quarter finals, only to be robbed of a semi-final berth by Suarez of Uruguay, who used his hands to save an obvious goal.
This year again, we qualified and the story is not palatable. Everything simply went wrong. The Sports Minister, who was your Ambassador, could not handle a simple assignment of representing you in Brazil. The sheer incompetence and lack of foresight is what caused another glorious tournament and have made us the laughing stock of the world. I am optimistic that is why I know we will make it again to Russia
This is me being optimistic, Mr President, On Monday student nurses and midwives went on demonstration to demand the payment of their unpaid book and research, clinical, as well as transportation allowances due them for the past two years. How do we expect them to be patriotic and give off their best after school, if this is how we wish to treat them? Do we Mr President expect these students to be optimistic after two years of failed promises?
This is me being overly optimistic Mr President, in 2010; we had single digit inflation, Inflation for the month of May hit 14.8 percent. This means that the average prices of goods and services went up by 14.8 percent between the periods of May 2013 and May 2014. How can Ghanaians be optimistic under this circumstance?
How can I be optimistic Mr President, when working for the media predisposed to the NDC is a hellish experience, we were abandon long before the whistle for the race started. We are better off in opposition than in government, because at least we know the New Patriotic Party (NPP), know how to wash their hands well.
We were here in 2012, and were part of your success story; we did the hatchet job for you, although many of you will like to believe otherwise. Our contribution is immeasurable, 2016 is not far from now, and we will be called upon to come to your defense and promote, but remember that a hungry man is an angry man.