Corruption

One of the titles which cropped up during Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia’s ground-shaking and revealing discourse was corruption, the almost intractable challenge which successive governments have promised to eradicate to no avail.

Governments have relished accusing their predecessors of aggravating the cankerworm, only to show symptoms of being its worst perpetrators.

The truth of the matter is that corruption is a cankerworm which has been with us for a long time, eluding all remedial measures introduced to stem it.

Its repercussions are all-pervading, a reason which has informed the usual perception about its ubiquity.

Unfortunately, some state institutions such as the police, judiciary and the political class are perceived to exhibit the cankerworm more than others. It won’t be fair though to limit our perception of the prevalence of corruption to the aforementioned classes of Ghanaians, given its all-pervading reach in society.

Corruption, we can state, indisputably is a worldwide phenomenon but in our part of the world, Africa, it is more pronounced with a debilitating repercussion.

Poverty and weak state institutions have all contributed to the sorry level of corruption in the country, a situation which calls for alternative arrangements to complement the existing approaches.

The reference to it, albeit in passing by Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, when he addressed the economic challenges of the country recently, was a welcome development.

It opened another chapter on the subject for Ghanaians to maul over and therefore take corrective measures about it.

Indeed, we could not agree more with his observations about the resilient cankerworm which, if not checked, has the potential of derailing whatever is left of our governance system.

Corruption deprives masses of the benefits that should accrue from taxes and other sources of revenue to the state. Dearth of infrastructure, shoddy health-care delivery system, poor quality educational facilities and above all, the entrenchment of a vicious poverty cycle, are all attributable to the debilitating effects of corruption.

Lately, as observed in the Bawumia discourse, judgment debts, especially when they are included in the nation’s budget, have offered another opening for the perpetration of corruption.

It has offered a regrettable opportunity for people not entitled to state money to have it diverted to their accounts to the detriment of the country’s financial fortunes.

As if that is not enough, companies also draw state funds for unexecuted projects, monies which are sent abroad with no taxes paid for anomalous transaction.

All these weaken our national currency, sapping away its energy and raising, unduly, the prices of essential items in the country.

Judgment debt, the new face of corruption, can pass for the worst injury the state can inflict on her citizens, more so in a small economy as ours.

We render gratitude to Dr. Bawumia for opening our eyes to the new face of corruption in our part of the world.

Nana Akufo Addo deserves a pat on his back for choosing this gentleman, once more, as his running mate. The duo is the appropriate chemistry to move the country forward.

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