Early this month (April 2021), two teenage boys gruesomely murdered another teenager at Kasoa, in the Central Region of Ghana.
On interrogation by the police, the boys were alleged to have said they committed the crime as ritual for money. It was further alleged that the two boys got the motivation from watching various local television documentaries in which some self-styled spiritualists had claimed they had the power to make people rich.
Ever since the incident, many Ghanaians (both individuals and organizations) have expressed their opinions on it. The latest l heard on radio Ghana, was from the Conference of Catholic Bishops.
For now, my interest is to state that as a nation and as Ghanaians, we must face the reality of today. This is because ritual murders, armed robbery, prostitution, galamsey, sakawa, indiscipline and all the other forms of social vices are not and have never been part of any Ghanaian ritual, tradition or way of life.
Without beating about the proverbial bush, l emphatically state that they are the result of leadership failure. And l will explain why.
After years of political instability, Ghanaians moved with confidence into the 4th Republic in 1993. Since then, we have experienced relative stability for almost three decades.
Anywhere on the globe, people have democratically elected governments by voting. When people vote, they do so with the hope that the people or party they select to manage state or political power will use it judiciously in the interests of all the people.
That is why the primary functions of any government include the protection of the natural rights of the people, to wit : the right to life, liberty and possession of property.
Others are the defense of the nation against external enemies; the management of the economic conditions; the redistribution of incomes and resources ; and finally, the provision of public or utility goods.
Fellow Ghanaians, by performing these tasks properly and efficiently, governments around the globe create jobs, build infrastructure like roads, bridges, harbors, hospitals and schools . They also provide potable water, markets, stable electricity , where possible affordable housing. Another important aspect of government duty is the presentation of opportunities for the people.
All these are the result of prudent and pragmatic management of the nation’s human and natural resources.
The truth , our elders say, is always bitter. In the case of Ghana, for over 28 years of a stable democracy, all the governments we have been electing have failed the people. It has been one mediocre performance after another.
Everyday, government and opposition are doing only propaganda in the media. Laws are not enforced and indiscipline is the order of the day.
The whole country is singing one song , that’s money, money and money. The churches which used to be the conscience of society are now preaching prosperity, prosperity and prosperity. When a person steals state money or does armed robbery or sakawa, the churches don’t ask how or where the money is coming from. All they care about is the quantum of the donation which they call “your breakthrough“.
To make matters worse, state officials( ministers, MPs, DCEs, CEOs etc) display their wealth in such a vulgar manner that makes the average Ghanaian wonder whether we have been created by the same God and are also Ghanaians?
Until we go back to the basics to recognize merit, hard work and honesty; until we get a crop of Ghanaians who will manage the country and its resources as if it were a family business which must succeed at all costs; until opportunities are created for every Ghanaian to take advantage of, l can assure you that, we have not seen anything yet. And that the crime by those juveniles, the rampant prostitution by our ladies , the corruption and all the other social vices, have just started.
And l repeat, it is the failure of our political and social leadership like the churches and traditional authorities.
The time to stop the blame game and face reality is now!!!
Credit: Facts Supported by Mr. Eric Bortey (NCCE rtd/ Frm Journalist with GBC).