Fifty-five years ago Ghana our beloved country, attained a republican status. The Queen, who since independence was still our head of state, ceased to exercise that symbolic position over the new nation.
It has been a long journey since we took complete hold of our destiny, the assessment of which has been mixed.
While some think we have chalked some successes, others and they are many consider our strides as far below what we should have registered. For the latter their position is the result of juxtaposition with our achievements and others with whom we started the republican journey simultaneously.
Basic infrastructure is still below expectation even as the country has an added resource in the form of oil. Our management of these resources is prone to corrupt practices largely by people entrusted with the authority of managing the country on our behalf.
Our national conversations continue to be hinged upon corruption and how public officials are not performing their duties and self-inflicted economic fortunes.
Our republican status suggests that the ultimate state power has been entrusted to the people of this country who have delegated this to their representatives.
As to whether these representatives have exhibited expected service to their country is another kettle of fish.
Undue politicization of issues much to the detriment of national development features largely in our affairs.
Medical care is fast eluding the ordinary man in the face of a crumbling health insurance programme which was put out as a social intervention response to the peculiar needs of the downtrodden.
State involvement in business ventures which started with much fanfare, have all but collapsed in the hands of indigenous persons entrusted with the management of these facilities.
It is instructive that these failed establishments fare well under private hands which acquire them when they are virtually auctioned somewhat. State properties are managed with little or no care about propriety.
State contracts are given under graft caveats. So many years therefore after attaining republican status, tongues wag when contracts are awarded and questions posed about the level of inflation of the sums of such public works.
Our election management is still lagging behind internationally accepted good practices. The electorate do not have confidence in those charged with election management and easily point at malfeasances which impugn the integrity of such democratic exercises.
Engagement of qualified persons to hold positions, regardless of their criticalness, is still restricted to ruling party loyalists. The country is highly polarized and people seeking employment must pray not to be associated with a particular political divide lest they are denied such positions.
Let us celebrate the 55th year of our attainment of republican status with a sober reflection of the state of the country and what all of us, regardless of our political inclinations, can do to halt the obvious decline.
- health insurance
- the republic