Panelists at a forum in Accra yesterday, deplored indiscipline and moral decadence in the country, and called on the authorities to step up their efforts to deal with the menace before the situation gets out of hand.
They mentioned indiscriminate building at unauthorised places, the haphazard disposal of waste, illegal mining, disrespect for road traffic regulations, disrespect for institutional structures, the elderly and people taking the law into their hands.
The panellists were Prof. Kwesi Botchwey, chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) and a former Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Joe Abbey of the Centre for Policy Analysis, Dr. Emmanuel Akwetey, Executive Director of the Institute for Democratic Governance, and Mr. Doudo Dia, Executive Director of the Centre for Democracy and Culture in Africa.
Speaking on the topic, ‘What are the NDPC ‘s new ideas for Ghana’s future?’ Dr. Botchwey said there seem to be diversion from the very structures and laid-down plans that had been set up by Ghana’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkurmah.
Dr. Botchway and said the 40-year development plan of the Commission was a laudable idea that could help the country address a number of issues and conform to international targets, such as sustainable development goals, the African Union Agenda 2063 and that of Economic Community of West African States.
Dr. Abbey expressed concern about state institutions not paying attention to needs of the people and workers, who had to stage demonstrations before their concerns were addressed.
Speaking on the topic, ‘The economic state of affairs and beyond 2016’, Dr. Abbey said the country had the resources all it take but mismanagement and disregard for laid-down structures had become an order of the day.
He wondered why some workers, including some nurses had not received their salary and allowances for months, saying it did not auger well for the progress of the country.
About the interim Economic Partnership Agreement which was initialled by the government analyst, Dr. Abbey said the country had all it takes to develop, and may not need such an agreement which would not benefit Ghana.
Dr. Akwetey said it behoves Ghanaians to make the forthcoming elections zero tolerance of violence.
He said Ghana was respected by many African countries for building a strong democratic credentials and institutions.
Dr. Akwetey said the winner takes all governance required sustained dialogue to attract other political parties in the running of the state.
Mr. Dia said Ghana has good laid-down rules to run its elections and to hand over power as compared with other African countries, where some leaders considered the presidency as a perpetual or family hereditary.
Mr. Franklin Cudjoe, the Founder and President of IMANI, said the forum was to bring the experts together to share their views on how they envisage the country to be after the 2016 elections.
By Francis Asamoah Tuffour