NEWS COMMENTARY STRESSES THE NEED TO WORK TO ELIMINATE CORRUPTION, INJUSTICE AND POLITICAL PROPAGANDA IN THE GHANAIAN SOCIETY AS THE NATION MARKS 62ND INDEPENDENCE ANNIVERSARY
Ghana marks 62nd Independence anniversary with activities to thank God for His blessings upon the nation this week. The event will also be used to acknowledge the strengths and weaknesses of the country as it matches on with the banner of freedom and justice as well as prosperity aspiration. The nation’s founding fathers fought a system characterized by propaganda, injustice and insecurity. Ghana today is still bedevilled with these social challenges. The independence of Ghana called for a fight for truth, justice, self-rule and peace. However, after 62 years Ghana is continually attacked by three social evils namely propaganda, corruption and insecurity. These have unfortunately become social lubricants of the ordinary Ghanaian society to the extent that anyone who lacks them is not part of the system. Consequently, the costliest commodities in the Ghanaian social market are truth, accountability, justice and peace. A number of injustices have been meted out to people and for years, the victims and their families are yet to receive justice to get closer. Governments since independence have fought corruption in various forms and capacities yet the monster is still wreaking havoc on the economy. No one can accuse governments for not fighting corruption with the seriousness it deserves because as citizens, we are the government and we all stand guilty in the court of Justice. The chorus against corruption has been that there is usually no evidence to prosecute accused persons. Consequently, only the ordinary offenders in this jungle get punished since the law is like the spider web which catches only smaller insects. The politicians and the senior public and private servants who engage in corrupt practices receive no or little punishment.
The naked truth is that most Ghanaians are seriously fighting corruption but are not ready to eliminate it. It is ironic that having gained independence for more than sixty years, the country still depends heavily on politicians who believe in propaganda, party justice, personal security and aggrandisement. The leaders of the country have not helped the country enough to the extent that Ghana continues to depend on donor countries which in turn exploit our natural resources and dictate to us policies that destroy our culture, environment and life. Are we truly independent? If we are, then we must do more to reduce our dependency on other nations. Our Coat of Arms reminds us that Ghana stands for freedom and justice. This implies that Ghana does not stand for freedom and injustice. Nevertheless, Ghanaians are so comfortable with injustice and only cry out for justice selectively. For instance, the National Democratic Congress, NDC cried out for justice and peace after the violence that ensued during the by-election at Ayawaso West Wuogon in the Greater Accra Region. It was not surprising that the New Patriotic Party, NPP reminded their counterparts of the similar conduct during the Talensi by-election in 2015 and others which took place when they were in government. That is “merry-go-round” politics in Ghana for you. The crux of the matter is that the two major political parties cry more for justice and peace for themselves than for the ordinary Ghanaian. It is an undeniable fact that Ghana at this era cannot do without NDC and NPP but they must not take the ordinary citizens for granted. We cannot continue to conspire with indiscipline that promotes propaganda, corruption and insecurity.
The solution to the problem begins with an objective attitude and promotion of greater discipline in the larger society. State institutions like the National Commission for Civic Education must be resourced to help in reorientation of our minds towards nation building. Every well-meaning Ghanaian must aim at promoting objective truth, justice and security for all. Unless we become conscious of one another and strive for the common good, we will continue to be ruled by the three social evils of political propaganda, injustice and insecurity. Let everyone contribute to making Ghana great and strong in the midst of challenges. Happy 62nd Independence anniversary to us all.
BY: REV. FR JONAS RICHMOND ATARAH, CATHOLIC PRIEST OF NAVRONGO-BOLGATANGA DIOCESE AND TEACHER AT BOLGATANGA GIRLS’ SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL.