Located in a region set aside by God to be endowed with so much riches in human, natural and mineral resources, Africa cannot be said to be poor, but it is.
The Triune God must have special love for this continent that even our climate is an envy to those indigenes of the temperate zones. While we here enjoy summer all year round, those in the temperate areas feel blessed with at most three months of warm sunshine.
Multiple times ago, world economic and military super powers could be found in Africa where West Africa produced at least four. Our education, judiciary and bureaucracy were unmatched that the West came here to get educated and adopt our ways. Then, for whatever happened the tables turned and Africa came crashing down and under the feet of those who were once beneath our feet.
Today, the West and super powers can decide how much they will buy our products for and pay much less than the cost of producing, so as it is, we, the producers are subsidising the consumers.
Knowing what unity can do, they sowed division among us, so that today we are divided nationally, ethnocentrically, ideologically and on religious preferences.
They coerced us into joining international organisations and institutions where they could squeeze us the more and one thing, they cleverly taught us is how to be corrupt, so that we mess ourselves up.
Many African leaders have come and gone and the plight of Africa does not seem to change. Those bold enough to initiate some positive changes for some reasons either got removed from office or were forced to take a one-way trip to the life hereafter.
But it looks like soon; Africa will begin to make a U-turn and journey back to prosperity and this is evident in a few leaders coming up. Some new rulers in our Francophone countries are directly getting France off their backs.
In Ghana, there is a leader emerging from the horizon, in Hon Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen, who has practically demonstrated how to get Africa back on her feet. In 1994, he was listed by TIME Magazine as one of the Hundred (100) Global Leaders for the new millennium, alongside Bill Gates (Microsoft Corporation), John F. Kennedy Jr., and others.
Having been blessed by God to have eyes that can see things that can enhance progress and prosperity, it was not surprising that Alan expanded Empretec’s presence from Ghana and Zimbabwe to eleven other African countries. As head of the Presidential Special Initiative under President Kufuor, he implemented the Corporate Village Enterprise, to bring about rural developments. Among others he established an $8.5 million state-of-the-art factory that produced industrial starch from our local cassava for export to Africa, Europe and Asia.
With Alan, came the construction of a multi-million-dollar enclave within the Tema Free Zone, dedicated to garments manufacturing for the export market by Ghanaian entrepreneurs. With Alan came the revival of the Oil Palm industry in Ghana, achieving a phenomenal growth in seedlings supply from 250,000 seedlings per annum in 2001 to 4 million as at the end of 2004, from twelve nursery sites. Programme initiated under which over 100,000 hectares of palm plantation is being cultivated.
With Alan, came the mobilization of new investments to expand Salt mining operations in Ghana and provide a stable raw material base for the development of a caustic soda industry to feed other manufacturing industries. Ghana’s non-traditional export sector has grown from $400 million in 2000 to the level of $800 million in 2005. In the past, Alan brought about initiatives that expanded growth of our economy and in the present he did same.
What is very evident is the 1D1F Initiative which saw over two hundred factories, newly constructed or reactivated across the country. Productions from 1D1F and Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) greatly enhance Ghana’s trade balance positions. For the first time, Ghana started recording trade surpluses since 2020. As at now we have an average trade deficit of -$25 million under this regime, as against an average trade deficit of -$4.5 billion during the Mills/Mahama NDC era.
Then comes the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which was Alan Kyerematen’s brainchild. This creates a single continental market for goods and services, with free movement of business persons and investments, among others.
In light of what is going on in international trading that negatively affects poorer countries, Alan’s AfCFTA can be seen as a game changer where producer countries will be get adequate paymentsfor their produce and also grow richer and richer to be able to develop into the Second and First worlds.
On his campaign trip to the Western Region of Ghana, Hon. Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen an NPP aspirant for the party’s presidential candidate’s slot, indicated that with so much natural and mineral resources endowed in the region, it could be possible that $3 billion could be gotten from the region and there will be no need to go the Bretton Woods Institutions.
A journalist friend of mine, misconstrued Alan’s statement to mean that Alan emphatically stated that Western Region can get us the $3 billion we are begging IMF for. Sensationalism in journalism in Ghana is getting out of hands. He took the opportunity to lambast the 1D1F Initiative, without coming out with anything sensible.
Alan’s vision which is clearly stated in his Great Transformation Plan (GTP), can be realized from the Western Region as well as from all regions. Alan included domesticating the gold industry, oil and gas, for the needed impact and processingof all resources in the Western Region.
With AfCFTA in full operation, products from the Ghana including the Western Region can be processed and sold to African countries. Alan has established markets for the production sectors he has set up. This is a man of vision, a man who sees the potential in whatever he looks at. Time Magazine had it right in including Alan John Kwadwo Kyerematen among the world leaders of the 21st century.
In the Western Region, Alan requested that we must have a sober reflection on how to move Ghana forward.
The truth is that without being sober and focus, we cannot move this country forward. During such reflection, we must be very objective and look beyond partisanship, ethnicity and ideology. We must reflect on issues nationalistically and center on what will help this country generally.
What is the greatest obstacle to achieve this can be identified as the polarisation of politics in Ghana, today. Today, generally our political leaders think partisan than national. For example, the NDC who implemented a 17.5% VAT on Financial Services during its era in 2014, would seven years later in 2021, during an NPP government, use its numbers in Parliament to blow down a 1.5% E-Levy proposed by the NPP. Even as the NDC was doing this, it had put in its 2020 manifesto, a proposal to implement an E-Levy lookalike.
Today, the NDC is bold to say that it will make sure the current NPP government flops in all sectors. It did not want Parliament to approve the nomination of ministers of state, hoping that Ghana will be without ministers of Trade and Industry and Food and Agriculture, among others, and it will take the credit, that even in opposition, the NDC is the one ruling.
It is obvious that the NDC has no good intentions for Ghana. Instead of coming out to assist this government to achieve results for this country, it wants this country to fail and when by freak of chance it gets elected to rule, how will it repair the harms done before implementing its development agendas?
The hypocrisy of the NDC is very legendary. In 2013, during the first Elections Petition, when it looked like the NPP would win the petition, the NDC sent representatives to the NPP headquarters during UP Tradition’s celebration of its 21st anniversary. Led by Chairman Kwabena Adjei, the NDC suggested that the winner-takes-all policy must be discarded, so that all political parties will have members joining government. Good news!
However, when the Supreme Court declared that H.E. John Mahama legally won the elections, that proposal was not implemented by the NDC who had earlier suggested it.
Alan is so keen on uniting all political parties to focus more on things that will help this country advance and shed off this age-old partisanship which is not helping Ghana. Only a president can implement this and make it a law. When we achieve this, there will be central policies that will look beyond quarter of a century or even half a century. It will be mandatory for all governments to implement such policies that will aim at building Ghana.
It will not be such an easy proposal to implement, but with someone known for identifying good prospects, and implementing them, Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen can make a bold score, here.
Hon. Daniel Dugan