We need long-term plan for sustainable development

Since Ghana’s independence in 1957, successive political administrations have adopted various plans with related objectives to pursue sustainable growth and development for the benefit of the people.

For instance, President Dr Kwame Nkrumah adopted a seven-year plan to run from 1963 to 1970, and it was aimed at creating a socialist society in which the individual Ghanaian would be able to enjoy a modem standard of living in his home supplemented by an advanced level of public services outside.

The military regimes that have usurped power at one point or another also put together development plans. For instance, the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), led by Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings, introduced Vision 2020 (1996-2000).

It was a long-term vision for Ghana to become a middle-income country by the year 2020.

Earlier, two administrations (Busia, August 1969 – January 1972; and Limann, September !979- December 31, 1981) had been accused of  loss of national sovereignty to Western powers and their financial institutions, and of priority of national interest and ousted by the military.

Today, Ghana has adopted a 40-year plan, with the vision of achieving “a just, free and prosperous society” by 2057.

However, the Akufo-Addo administration, in 2017,  introduced the Coordinated Programme Of Economic And Social Development Policies (2017-2024), an Agenda For Jobs: Creating Prosperity and Equal Opportunity for All.

On Tuesday, the National Development Planning Commission  presented the same Government’s 2022-2025 Coordinated Socio-Economic Policies to Parliament for consideration and approval.

The document is to ensure equitable access to social infrastructure by the citizens, enhance human capital development, industrialise the economy and make it more inclusive, as well as create jobs for the youth, mobilise revenue for wealth creation and build a resilient economy.

The Ghanaian Times agrees that short- and medium-term plans can always be adopted from a long-term one, depending on the exigencies of the time, so we wish to appeal to all stakeholders to help the government to succeed in this latest plan and others already in operation.

Much as the Ghanaian Times cannot condemn any administration for adopting a certain development plan, it is worried that the absence of a well-crafted and coordinated plan for successive governments to follow makes it difficult for the country to achieve sustainable growth and development.

The chaos in the sectors of the economy seems to be the result of that problem.

Every development plan has legal backing and strategies to carry it through with regard to the areas to be tackled, yet observation has proven that there are cases where the legal provisions and strategies to follow have been compromised.

The truth is that development plans, whether short, medium or long-term, will be successful only when the fundamentals are right for their implementation.

It must, however, be noted that long-term development plans substantially help nations to grow.

We, therefore, appeal  to the government to show urgency and strong political will in ensuring the  successful implementation of all its development plans for the benefit of the people.

Also there must be long-term plans for successive governments to follow but with provisions for changes, depending on the demands of the day.

Our current state of development does not befit us, considering the fact that we attained independence the same time as countries like Malaysia which are streets ahead of us in development.

This means the government should create the conditions for motivation and enthusiasm on the part of the people to yearn to develop the country, irrespective of political and religious affiliations.

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