I quite remember how confused I was when a friend put this question to me, “What is your New Year’s Resolution?” I looked around and smartly gave an answer drawing hints from what I had heard others say. The truth? I just had to say something without meaning it. I guess most of you can easily relate here right? Well, never mind!
New Year is here once again and as usual the sporadic desire that comes with its Resolution would not skip our thoughts. This is the moment when everyone sits to reflect and evaluate some of their life choices already executed and yet to be executed. When the term is mentioned, everyone seems to be agog over it with many realistic and unrealistic desires. Well, call it a ‘hotchpotch’ and you would not be far from wrong.
But that is not and should not be the case. New Year’s Resolutions must be made by individuals who are so determined to bring about positive change in their lives. It is a time to sit in retrospection with a purpose of examining not only bitter experiences but the good ones as well, so as to help improve and develop oneself. The bitter encounters only become mistakes if we refuse to learn from them. New Year’s Resolution presents an opportunity to ‘right the wrong’ and strive for excellence and positive change.
Fortunately or unfortunately, we cannot leave politics outside the gate when talking about New Year’s Resolution because we are in an electioneering year. And as one would expect, we would have all the political parties, whether the giant or small ones, come all out to deliver numerous campaign messages. Whatever positive change we as Ghanaians individually crave is directly or indirectly linked to the choice we are yet to make in upcoming elections because we cannot live in isolation from governments policies. Whatever actions embarked on by government has a direct impact on our lives. It is this regard that we have a major role to play in electing the right choice to effect the positive change we all desire. In so doing, we must hold our political “gurus” accountable for realistic promises that would reflect change in our lives. Filling the minds of Ghanaians with promises is easy to do, but acting on it is another story altogether.
We have seen enough of politics in Ghana since 1992 to know the solution to the problems it throws at.
In making the right choice of change let us apply the aforementioned principle.
The ruling political party based on the “governing experience” demonstrated, has given us a lucid evidence to kick them out of office. The excruciating “Grand Paa Dumsor” has done enough “awful justice” to Ghanaians by transitioning innocent employees into abrupt unemployed personnel with the collapse of several local businesses. As if that was not enough, Government has insensitively increased utility tariffs astronomically without any fear or favour to our plights. And what happened to the over 200 secondary schools that President John Dramani Mahama promised to build by 2016? Has the living conditions of Ghanaians improved as Mr President promised? Has he been able to improve the health sector drastically?
A monumental failure might even be an understatement. President Mahama has not lived up to his responsibilities as a Leader of this country.
Now, with the NDC relegated to the back, the second Political Party that should have been our source of hope is the NPP. This perhaps should have been a hands-down win for them in the coming elections. But what do we see? Instead of demonstrating to Ghanaians that it would not be wrong to entrust our mandate to them to rule the country peacefully, they have also given us a patent evidence to equally kick them out of the race. The party is clearly in disarray; with internal bickering leading to physical assault, chaos and eventually death. The NPP has not shown enough proof to Ghanaians that they are ready to lead Ghana peacefully to bring about the change needed.
I like what the Holy Book says, “If both hands cause you to stumble, cut it off”. Both the NDC and NPP MUST BE CUT OFF.
For our New Year’s Resolutions to be effective collectively as a country, we need change in our political landscape. We need change of Government.
The PPP led by Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom remains the only “lynchpin” needed for change in the country. Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom by his experience has equally given evidence that he is competent and responsible to any task assigned him. He has lived up to expectations as a private entrepreneur and in public office. As the founder of the PPP, he has been able to maintain peace and harmony in his party, an indication that he is qualified enough to lead the country peacefully.
Like I said earlier, let us hold the presidential candidates accountable to realistic promises not empty promises. As we think of our independent New Year’s Resolutions, let us also think of our “Collective Resolutions” as a country, a resolution that would be impactful realistically through an “Experienced, Incorruptible, Peaceful and Competent Leader”; Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom.
By: Ruth Appiah Osei
University of Nordland, Norway
Date: 4th January 2016