Obeng

Ghana last Saturday lost one of its versatile sons, the Senior Presidential Advisor, Mr Paul Victor Obeng.

ObengSince then, tributes from across the political divide have continued to pour in for the individual we can classify as an institutional memory in modern-day Ghanaian politics.

PV, as he was affectionately called, has played key roles in the country?s socio-political development since 1979.

As President John Dramani Mahama observed in his tribute, ?We have lost a tireless public servant, an admirable unifier and a giant of our political landscape over the past 30-plus years.?

The Chief of Staff in the Kufuor administration, Mr Kwadwo Mpiani, said of PV, “We don’t have too many of such people in Ghana,” while his counterpart in the Rawlings regime, Nana Ato Dadzie, described PV as a “leader”, a “mentor”, a man whose death “marked the end of an epoch”.

The Daily Graphic shares in the grief of the bereaved family in particular and Ghanaians in general.

Individuals and organisations that have had interactions with PV will always testify to the unique perspectives he always brought to bear on discussions. He often left them more motivated and encouraged to strive for nothing but the best.

A known member of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), PV never allowed his political beliefs and convictions to influence his discourse on national issues. As practical and optimistic as he was, he listened to all arguments and engaged people with his ideas to enable a common ground to be reached.

The nation has lost a great son. In the words of President Mahama, PV ?was a passionate nationalist and patriot, full of practical ideas, solutions and optimism for the good of Ghana and Ghanaians?.

As recent as the National Economic Forum at Senchi last week, PV was among the seasoned personalities who helped to proffer solutions to the ailing national economy. It only shows how committed he was to the national development agenda.

No wonder that until his death he chaired the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC).

The Daily Graphic believes that it is high time the nation tapped into the knowledge base and expertise of such patriots whose commitment to the national agenda transcends the partisan nature of our politics.

We believe that the country stands to gain if the expertise and knowledge of personalities such as Mr Kwame Pianim, Mr K. B. Asante, Mr K. B. Quantson, Dr Patrick Awuah and many others are properly harnessed.

Individually, these personalities are doing exceptionally well, but the wealth of knowledge they have gained from their respective professional and career endeavours could be holistically utilised in a non-partisan way to move this country forward.

As it is now, it does not appear there is any deliberate national effort to tap into the knowledge base of such individuals.

The Daily Graphic believes that it is not late to do so to serve as a guide for the present and future generations.

From the era of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) under Chairman Rawlings and currently under President Mahama, PV served in various capacities, including being the de facto Prime Minister at one stage and member of public and private boards.

Ghana has surely lost a gem.

Daily Graphic?Monday, 19 May 2014

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