Long before the day—6 March-last Wednesday, sober thinking wondered what is there to celebrate this country at 62 years as a sovereign state among global nations because there is really nothing to be cheerful for. However, as stark as it is, there is gratitude for the achievement of independence. It is or should be plausible to go into quiet introspection, norm. Yet again it is hackneyed because the inventory tells the hymnist’s “old old story.” It is boring and could depress. Though the present is the accumulation of the messing up in many ways, the country might be becoming more than probably awakened to grope a way to grapple with the debris from politics of pollution, deepening insecurity in the midst of entrenching hardship and façade of godliness. Results?:
No one listens. No one hears. No one wants the truth and no one confesses the same. But sincerely there is hope that it will be well—“obeye yie” which has been the spirit at the core of the country’s resilience, if you like the only trophy in three decades plus two years for the “vorschaft wunder” economic miracle. Having in the preceding all but brief post-mortem doodled a state of “Alice in wonderland” would suggest it is clear there is nothing else to write about—a tapestry of glorious achievements. There is plenty au contraire. Partisan politics deface nationalist pride to own the “Remarkables” co-jointly in spite of ourselves, bottomline.
Thus the cheerless earlier sketch which harshly portrays a country situation which epitomizes disappointments of a people tiring of democracy and desperately, unspokenly though, itch that there is need to make a transition into something different. Deconsolidation of democracy could have been the description in the leaps back for 62 years. Troubling now is basically disenchantment with the system—democracy of political parties. Ordinarily, those parties would not be rejects today but for their record and continuing mutual anti-rhetorics which put aside the necessarily important for their conveniences to consolidate being in office. The obvious issue then would be whether things could be done without party politics in this country. It can be answered with historical inference and pragmatic conclusion.
There has been an effort in the experiment with UNIGOV which did not occur. Therefore we can neither flag its merit(s) nor put it down. I accept the vacuum does not warrant dismissing the notion; but riding on it can bring long impact damage or won’t be easy optionally in a few years. Throughout all its hic-cups the only thing everyone would agree about is the politics by parties competing in decorum. That is if the arrangements for clean contest of ideas seeking the vote could be shorn of the derangements such as under probe here today. It cannot get any worse unless the parleys in the offing deadlocked, having had neither constructive conversations nor successful mediation; in which case politics would have eaten up its last chance credibility and the political dominoes will be different calculatedly such as we might borrow currents from Nigeria via the surge of what is called the “Generation Democracy”.
This refers to the Youth in that country becoming active to give politics, governance and democracy a new stage and agenda. That turn of page would be mindful of lessons of history, I hope. At the same time the youthful euphoria to take over is fraught for rush, inexperience and usually ends too quickly fizzled. It logically supposes that the situation of Youth versus Oldies be negotiated. The most tangible reasoning for leveraging experience with freshness of new lights, not testing the discussion but getting the mix right derives from seeming contradictory sayings: “a day in politics is long time indeed” and “experience is the best teacher.” The rush of attritions that hit the last parliament in the primaries ultimately into present demonstrates its backlash.
It is not a case making for one person hogging a seat in parliament. The flaw in that last episode was the claim that they had been too long there and ought to leave for others to “chop small too.” And I think the nation owes gracious thanks for the all party consensus which backed down a constituency in Ashanti to rescind- keep a member in during that that quake fro scalps in our parliamentary candidature ballot annals. [I stand for correction but I think it was Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu] I know that the House began to look ring-rusty a few terms before this. Indeed it was least sanguine hearing members play mock at another’s oral English shortfalls, post-state of the nation by the president last month.
The purpose of these bits of seeming digressions is to point to be electable. If the main idea of “Generation Democracy” is simply a” must” in the vein of the “old order changeth yielding place to new” that misses its raison d’etre. The status-quo ante might as well be tolerated and massaged hopefully that space would open for the new generation as nature takes its toll. The new force cannot be the touted source for change for and in the behalf of the Youth and surge. The middle ground to snuff hope out of the huge frustration is to let the political parties groom and the youth submit, helping themselves to be trusted and make impacts because it takes down the disenchantment and sets a welcome stage for neo-politics, comfortably accommodated.
This shall roughly be the average outcome because everyone would have towed along mindful of lessons of history. I need to pigeon-hole one such lesson in the context of political ideologies relative to finding the next leadership crop, most importantly because it is tradition. Our ideological traditions were initially Conservative and Socialist –DOMO and CPP respectively. Now there is the Socialist-Democrat NDC. Both the NDC and CPP pander to the Left. But truth of practice is that Leaders for the Left usually burst to thrust themselves on the party by one constant means, populist appeal with charisma if that endowment is possessed.
The “take your turn with approval” approach among Conservatives remains the general order throughout globally with some décor as open balloting, a switch away from “emerge” like the Conservative party in Britain until after former Prime Minister Sir Alec Douglas Home 1966. The former’s tends to raucous and divisive. It would seem though that here the NDC have rebuilt a different reputation from recently in contrast within and against other political parties here today. There is the likelihood of the NDC’s new leaf becoming or influencing each giving their parties the right perspectives on how to wrest internal peace and cohesion.
It is a sad commentary for posterity that political party rivalries had turned them into warring factions and the self-protectionism may not be mediated between them and civil society on which they depend to be in government or out from before independence to date, except the four military interventions –1966, 1972, 1979 and 1981. Notable for discourse and analysis as independence was celebrated per se in the flexing of power muscle are: a not-too-happy but a looming volte face and “As we celebrate our Nation’s 62nd birthday, we should be fortified in the knowledge that despite our challenges and difficulties, we are on course to reaching our goal of a Ghana beyond Aid.” [President Nana Akufo-Addo Tamale 03-06-19]. Both have come up short and cast indictments.
But thinking, musing, serious, lackadaisical and whichever, it is best to hold off judgment like Cardinal John Newman [soon to be a Saint] saying:” de illis quae sequebantur posterorum judicium sit—about those things which had followed, [independence to date] let posterity be the judge”—a risky bet notwithstanding because a heels dug in is on course, a phraseology that has superseded things are in “pipeline and we vare looking into it”.
© Prof.nana essilfie-conduah.