I have just returned from a lecture given by Mr. Franklin Cudjoe, the brilliant and astute executive director of IMANI, a highly respected think tank NGO. The chairman of the occasion was Dr. Charles Wreko-Brobby, alias Tarzan, whose own audacious closing remarks dealing with the malaise confronting the media could have formed a whole lecture on its own. The function which was organized by Mr. Andrew Awuni?s Centre for Freedom and Accuracy was under the theme ?The Freedom Power Lectures.? The topic for the day was: ?Ghana?s Democracy: What is Right, What is Wrong and the Future.? The function was held at the Coconut Grove Regency Hotel which is gradually becoming the nerve centre and preferred destination for many intellectual and social programmes involving respectable institutions and civil society and fraternal organizations.

Of course, for a regime which came to power through vile propaganda and vicious lies, and still continues to nurture its existence with such puerile stuff, the NDC has never found any comfort in the incisive, accurate, relevant and reliable intellectual discourse on national affairs by Franklin Cudjoe and his IMANI outfit and other similar personalities and institutions. One can still recall the incisive dissertation IMANI provided on the infamous and corruption infested STX deal which ended as a failure at a huge cost to the nation, while the people the project was meant for never derived a single benefit from that debacle. Franklin Cudjoe and IMANI were insulted by the sharp tongues of the NDC uncouth but well-oiled and competently maintained political propaganda machinery. If the NDC had used the same level of competence in managing its propaganda machinery as in managing the affairs of the state, this country would not have witnessed the atmosphere of foreboding which has enveloped the whole nation since the onset of the NDC administration barely four years ago.

Indeed, Franklin Cudjoe and IMANI provide a macrocosm of all the well-meaning patriotic personalities and institutions whose comments on relevant national issues have proved to be the poison ivy to the incompetent and corruption ridden and evil machinations of NDC administration. Franklin Cudjoe and IMANI and such personalities and institutions which provide a mass spectrum of the conscience of the  society have been derided, insulted, condemned and viciously taken to the cleaners against their collective and individual wills, while being bitten on the way  by the greedy bastards of NDC children with strong and sharp canine adult teeth.

History will recall that it was Dr. Wereko-Brobby who took the entire demonic and oppressive PNDC establishment by the horns in the media landscape when he established the first private FM station from his bedroom, Radio Eye.  For some time his radio station played hide-and-seek with the evil and rampaging PNDC empire until its location was eventually traced and ignominiously shut down with all the force behind a bulldozer when even a sledge hammer would have been a highly inappropriately dangerous tool to use. By that time, Radio Eye had sent the necessary strong message down the corridor that the nation was ripe to break the electronic broadcasting monopoly of the state media, the GBC. Today?s multiplicity of FM stations is therefore due to the unrecorded adventures of Dr. Wereko-Brobby and his experimental Radio Eye.

Of course, Mr. Andrew Awuni, a former presidential staffer under President Kufuor?s NPP administration and a seasoned journalist himself, provided his own independent thoughts in his welcome address which could also have doubled up as the keynote address.

Of recent past, it has been my habit to refuse invitations to attend such public lectures. The reason is simple. I attend with great expectations only to return with sunken and low spirit. One keeps on hearing the litany of corrupt, greedy and incompetent leadership associated with the educated Blackman in leadership position mismanaging national affairs and state institutions. The more you attend these functions, the more you get depressed from the realizations that all the problems of the Blackman are manmade and not God made. From the various presentations at the function, I became more convinced in the belief I hold that unless some miracle happens, we, as a people and a nation and a continent, are doomed. We do not have the right intellect to provide effective solutions to the problems we so expertly create for ourselves because of excessive greed.

The only silver lining on the horizon is that come December, Ghanaians will have the opportunity to make a choice, albeit a choice which in the past has proven meaningless to the suffering majority of the citizens. But it would still be better than nothing. Minimum government is better than no government at all. Nobody should wish for it but the way things are going, it would be better to have some semblance of evil government in place than no government at all like we are all witnessing in Somalia. After 23 years in power, the PNDC/NDC political apparatchik has proven to be a greater evil than the rest. Nobody should forget the parable of the rotten plank over a fast flowing river. It is time the whole country united to get rid of the NDC. After that we can afford the luxury to quarrel among ourselves. Another four years of NDC administration will completely destroy this nation. The NDC has destroyed every worthy asset we ever had.

Never in the history of this country, not even under Dr. Kwame Nkrumah?s obnoxious Preventive Detention Act days, has state security machinery meant to guide the state, been so used to protect criminals portraying themselves and hiding under the guise of being NDC foot soldiers who commit impunity and heinous crimes against other citizens, be they their political opponents or not. What do you expect when NDC foot soldiers can move in and out of the security services at will as members at the beckoning of an NDC party organizer with the active connivance of the person in charge of the whole national security? This nation is doomed.  A typical Animal Farm situation has been created under President Mills/Mahama NDC administration, where everything in NDC colours is good while any other thing in different colours must be smashed and flattened with bulldozers.

Now, we have reached a stage where the sanctity of life of the citizens is also at risk. Apart from numerous unsolved murder cases, every citizen in this country is constantly exposed to two major dangers as a result of the failure of the state apparatchik to enforce the laws.  Instant justice meted out to persons who are alleged to be criminals are executed on the spot and the miserable and horrific carnage on our roads involving the unacceptable loss of precious lives and destruction of precious properties are all pointers to the failure of the state under the NDC administration.

Last week alone, the national newspapers reported two terrible accidents at two different parts of the country with collective loss of 12 persons with gruesome pictures. At the same time, the newspapers also reported with pictures, an alleged thief who was not only beaten to death but also tied to a tree naked probably to send signals to the security forces and the judicial system that the citizens have lost faith in their ability to combat crime and enforce justice, while warning miscreants in the society the fate which awaits them once they are caught on the blind side of the law. Nobody is safe. We cannot continue on this part of self-destruction. We have to make a U-turn.

The latest child on the block is the computerized SHS admission exercise presently going on. The secretariat has been raided and turned into an NDC political/tribal arena where NDC foot soldiers have been relocated to do the biding of their political masters.  Students from two particular areas of this country have been given undue advantage and have been forced on ?prestigious? schools located in Cape Coast, Accra and Kumasi by NDC political hirelings stationed at the secretariat to the disadvantage of other students from certain parts of the country. The SHS admission has not only been politicized, but has also been given tribal connotations. The computerized placing system, which was introduced under President Kufuor?s NPP administration to ensure fairness, has been completely destroyed under President Mahama?s NDC administration. For the purpose of transparency, it would be appropriate if after the admission exercise, the list of candidates admitted into all the schools is provided with their BECE results to ensure fairness. The result should prove mindboggling. It will indicate the extent of the rot in the plank over the fast moving river and the danger it poses for the pedestrian wishing to use it to cross to the other side. Only a fool will want to believe that our democracy is on course.

E-mail: [email protected]

By Kwame Gyasi

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