Commonsense with Daniel Dugan
Like President Elect Donald Trump, no one gave him a dog’s chance; no one, that is if one belongs to the National Democratic Congress (NDC) or among the other group of Nana-Can-Never-Be-President!
Even a prominent chief wagered the stool he was occupying that should Nana win, he would abdicate. Another NDC guru wagered his latest expensive SUV on a talk show presenter’s yam mobile phone that Nana could never be president. Some pastor, we are told, promised to burn his Bible should Nana win, and the most disgusting wager came from a woman who promised to shave her pubic hair in public should Nana win.
Even, within his New Patriotic Party (NPP), some believed he would never win. Unfortunately, same was said of President Kufuor, who was described as a loser general and was no longer qualified to lead his troops to battle; a basket of cassava which was rejected at market need not be taken back for sale, and the popular, JAK was/is an Asante and the Asante culture had been decreed by the gods that no Asante should be above the Asantehene, so no Asante could be president.
When he went down in humility begging the electorate to land him the highest office in the land, he was mocked at by his opponent. Humility pays, and it paid this time round, when Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo won in record-shattering mode. He was the first to topple an incumbent president, who was also in the race; the first to see the back of a ruling government by one-touch, and the first Ghanaian to follow the footsteps of his parent into the high office of the Presidency. And he did this in style. His NPP has also taken over an absolute majority in Parliament, and look poised to breaking the 200 seat barrier in 2020, if-God-so-wills-it, and He will surely will it.
After eight years of absence, the Liberal Democrats are Back, and they are Beautiful – A party that believes in the Rule-of-Law and Property-Owning Democracy (which simply means fairly sharing the national cake for each and every one). During its first attempt on the national scene in 1969, this tradition decided to develop the rural areas so that adequate job and social amenities would be there for the rural folks to also live in comfort. This was, however, truncated in 1972 by the socialists (Nkrumah, said so).
An attempt in 1979 fell short, as the Liberal Democrats were split in two factions. And, after a cycle of twenty-one years of socialist rule, the Libs came back under H.E. JAK to meet empty coffers (confirmed by the NDC’s Spio Garbrah with a mountain of debts to settle). With economic acumen and practical finance and resource management, Ghana rose from the ashes and became a middle earning country, where, for the first time, social interventions were made available under capitalist rule than ever before under a socialist government, anywhere in Africa, if not the world. More than adequate health provision under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), feeding and busing of school children, free ante and post natal care (born-free) among others.
Yet the socialists were hard at work and convinced Ghanaians that they were starving, and Ghanaians believed. So in 2008, they saw the backs of the Libs, but had to make a glorious ‘U-Turn’ to usher in another era of the Liberal Democrats. The rejection of the NDC was unprecedented, with 169 seats, and counting, going to the NPP.
In the Square last Saturday, everything went orderly, except for the Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye, going out of order by going against protocol and order of activities to allow H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo make his speech first.
After that powerful speech, some people left the Square fully satisfied and enriched with the spirit to do better for this nation to rise out of the ashes again. So there were quite a number of empty chairs, as Presidents Johnson Sirleaf (Liberia) and Ouattara (La Cote d’Ivoire) delivered their solidarity messages.
H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s speech was a powerful call to service. Ghanaians are now to become anew and forge ahead to work their best to turn Ghana from a beggar nation to a prosperous one. At 60, we cannot afford to be called poor, and seriously, the President is damn right. In Africa we are not among even the top fifteen richest countries, and given our pedigree, this is unacceptable. At the beginning of our nationhood, we started with a credit balance of £240 million or $65 billion in today’s value. Most of that money was used to fund anti-colonialist movements in some African countries, or sponsor anti-capitalist groups in pro-capitalist independent African nations. In the end, we had to borrow $25 million for the construction of the Akosombo dam, and in desperation, sold out this country in an unacceptable deal with Kaiser.
Subsequently, every government after Nkrumah’s CPP started on a debit balance, and so it is to this day that the new NPP regime begins governance with the highest debit balance to date of over $30 billion. H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has the game plan to move us up and out of poverty to prosperity. He highlighted on tax reduction, which makes sense. In a chase for money, socialist regimes will settle for high taxes, and high taxes breed low productivity, which breeds laying-off of workers, which leads to high unemployment, and which leads to high rate of crime.
When the tax regime is lowered and expanded to cover all sectors (except strategic areas), businesses will boom, and every business will willfully pay taxes, resulting in enough income for the nation. Booming business means more employment, and that means more social security and a sound economy and peaceful nation.
Ghana is opened for business again, he added, stressing that the business of government is to govern, and not to compete with the private sector. Something the Socialists fail to acknowledge.
He stressed that “we will build a confident Ghana, which is united, at peace with itself, and takes pride in its diversity.” This journey is not going to be easy, and lots of sacrifices must be made. The call for unity is to be primarily made to the various factions within the NPP. Israel, a once powerful nation, went disunited and fell apart into vulnerable states of Judah and Israel, which were conquered and taken to ungodly nations for slavery.
As we have it today, there is only one political tradition in Ghana which professes liberal democracy, and that is the NPP. To make this tradition stay entrenched in frontline national politics and governance, all members of NPP must endeavor to see that H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s government succeeds. There should be no excuse here, for even if not for him, it should be for the tradition, which has suffered a lot under the treachery of Socialism. The fact that this tradition has the magic wand to transform this nation is undisputed. There is a need to unite and work hard for this government to succeed, if we must lead Africa again. United we must, and let all NPP be, and stay united. We should believe in Ghana and believe we are Ghanaians, and through our love, all Ghanaians will unite behind us.
This soul inspiring powerful inaugural speech was rather twisted for all evil intentions by JoyNews, for whatever reasons.
JoyNews went into its archives of past inaugural speeches of presidents, from the year 1500 to date, to find which statements H.E. Akufo-Addo quoted without acknowledging the original speakers. With little sweat, they found a similar statement made by President George W. Bush, and presto, blew it up with plagiarism charges against the new president, maybe to be presented to the ICC in The Hague. This is to serve notice to President Akufo-Addo that, yes, as he indicated that his ambition to serve this country and restore pride and prosperity he will face challenges, there are Ghanaians who will be ready to betray both president and government, not only to the world, but to even as far as Pluto.
However, what was said to be plagiarism was not as such at all. George Bush quoted from an American President, Woodrow Wilson, without acknowledging him. Americans did not see any offense here, because Wilson, who was the 28th President and reigned from 1913 to 1921, died in 1924. He was the one who first made the “I ask you to be citizens, not subjects…and a nation of character” statement, which Bush quoted 76 years after his demise, and was re-quoted by H.E. Akufo-Addo over 83 years after. It is now alleged that the Intellectual Properties Rights under the World Intellectual Properties Organization of the UN, allow using of other people’s original works without acknowledging them, after, at least, 70 years of their demise.
It is serious and unacceptable for the JoyNews establishment not to be aware of this, since, as one of the largest media houses, it must have up-to-date information on plagiarism laws. Instead of taking the lead to open discussions on this inspiring speech, the Joy Media house wants to set a motion where the value of the speech is to be disregarded, and in place, open up ridiculous comments against the new government. It is quite a shame why we Blacks love to pull down our own kinds, especially when we regard ourselves not part of those who are making efforts to progress and succeed.
Another quote, similar to President Bill Clinton’s speech of “Though our challenges are fearsome, so are our strengths…” (January 21, 1993.), and was found in President Akufo-Addo’s speech, has also come up for discussion to ridicule his good plans for a successful tenure of leadership of this nation.
Notice has long been served that this new government will be made to stay out of focus. Those who love the President, his government, and the need for him to succeed, so that Ghana succeeds, must be up and standing to defend and explain government’s plans of actions. We do not need babies with sharp teeth, but people who will be objective in their views, and lead others to support this new regime.
Hon Daniel Dugan