Six decades on, these countries have moved from being developing countries to first world status (in a matter of three decades only) while sadly, Ghana still struggles to be recognized as a lower middle income country. Even with the resources the country has been blessed with.
I question the significance of commemorating this special Ghanaian history observing tax resources used to organize gargantuan celebrations and parades where dignitaries sit comfortably under canopies and school kids, personnel of the various services, unions and groups are paraded under the blazing sun. Long speeches trashed immediately after the parade is over.
Ultimately on this day, we start looking out for whatever little good there is and start to feel proud for it when we should be competing with countries like Singapore and Malaysia.
It is my opinion that 60 years of independence has yielded no commensurate dividend to us as a people. As a nation, the question it begs then is “How do we mobilize for a more prosperous future?”
Regardless of our mediocre past, I believe the prospects for our dear nation is still bright. I say so because, for me, the truth is not always defined by what has been in the past but most often what is hidden and is yet to be manifest. Here are 2 critical suggestions for us to mobilize for the future. First, we need to develop a vision of where we want to get to. One of the major reasons for which I think we find ourselves at this point is the uncoordinated and unfocused efforts at development. Proverbs 29:18 reads, “Where there is no vision, the people cast off restraint”. Ghana at this point needs a blueprint around which its citizens can rally around and that is why I commend the efforts of H.E John Dramani Mahama for initiating the 40 years national development plan. Government under H.E Nana Akuffo Addo should endeavor to give it the attention it deserves so that together as a nation, we’ll have our energies focused and coordinated towards our the vision.
Secondly, we need to rethink the effects of the inherited systems and structures and begin to redesign new systems and structures on the anvil of our experiences to suit our ever changing needs.
Our current educational system is one of the main challenges for me. Let me explain why as I share a brief history of formal education in Ghana:
The earliest history of formal education in Ghana is directly associated with the history of European and later British activities on the Gold Coast. Upon their arrival in the gold-coast, they established businesses and corporations to enhance their exploitation of the people. These businesses needed people to work as clerical staff and other administrative assistants. They then established schools to teach the folks how to read and write in order to equip them to perform the clerical duties only for these corporations of exploitation. A system of streamlined regurgitation instead of ‘without-the box’ broader thinking. Sadly, we have not been able to redesign a new system to suit our changing needs. Instead, we’ve found a way to perpetuate this flawed and ill-intended system.
This is why I believe the broader picture of most of the problems we face as a nation has to do with the general failure of the educational system to holistically develop those who go through it into well thinking and well positioned people who can thrive in the world after school. Instead of modelling those who go through it into homogeneous drones who cannot think outside the prescribed consensus of “go to school, learn hard, get good grades” and so on.
Nothing can explain why a nation so blessed by God with important natural resources will be this poor.
Until we take pains to develop a blueprint for ourselves, until we redesign new systems and structures on the anvil of our experiences to suit our ever-changing needs, 60 years from now, we’ll be back at this point.
Present day thoughts require a sober reflection of our mother Ghana.
Source: Cedric Dzelu YMCA S2C Ambassador