Ghana, 60 years in 6 pages: a layman’s outlook; independence, Coups, Democracy.

Extracts from the book No Perfect Man, by IB Bakar.

Ghana’s political landscape has always been laced with scandals and scenic plots in its entirety, the births of a self-governing state in itself rose from the ashes of a disturbance which was sweeping across the continent and around the world repelling colonial imperialism, the Brits couldn’t resist the chats of independence whether it was now or in shortest possible time. But Nkrumah had other plans, some called it betrayal, he called it an aggressive claim of something that was “our birth right” his aggression took him places, prison and the hearts of many to end of the world. Chants for his release was strong, so strong that he was released to rule as the redeemer he was.

The fall of colonialism gave birth to a softer version which was imposed by Nkrumah himself to pursue all his ideals and development with little distraction, and then his troubles began, constant critics of his futuristic developments at the time and his and overzealous dream of merging Africa into a single socialist bloc. He globe-throttling the Africa and the world, selling his ideals, it was on one of those fares that the inevitable happen. , Nkrumah was out,  At long last, not his life, like the previous attempts but his reign, “operation cold chop” as it was dubbed cited Nkrumah’s  poor economic decisions and mismanagement and his unilateral governance as cause for his overthrow, whether it was that or the foreign interest who saw his tilt towards communism, there were popular support for his dethrone; some made merry in the stress of the capital on “his day of shame”. Nkrumah never became himself after his overthrow the son of Nkroful sort refugee in sekoture’s Guinea till his passing, watching his dreamland contoured and his brain child, the CPP and its affiliates molested and thorn apart in the frigid cold like Pangaea in the ice age, a land he still think he is napping in if the dead were indeed in a state of REM,

The NLC did a fair job of liberating the Republic from Nkrumah’s drowning to capitalist bay, familiar face selling amorous but poisoned darted free market strategies, the kind Nkrumah loathed to death. Severing Nkrumah’s ties with the world and forging new ones. Economically, their earlier years were better than Nkrumah’s last thanks to fine-tuning linked to the World Bank and the IMF, arriving in grey hounding speed; they came bearing more than technical support, rice wheat in the tons as a gesture of gratitude for doing their bidding.

Living standards were better at least for the armed forces, living in a tax-free haven, whiles the coup masters adorned each other in ranks gaining grounds on Plato’s republic. Life was tough for the average, their promised freedoms was like a mirage in the distance, civil rights for citizens and journalist was not enshrined in their decrees, strikes and press hear-say could land you a sizable jail term. Further widening tribal line, a plight never to repair years on. If power corrupt absolutely that was it, after 3 years, 8 month 6 days their promise to relinquish power soon came to bear in a quasi-democratic government with allied interest of K.Abusia and Gbedemah taking center stage in the 1969 elections, an election where parties campaigns promised utopia to teaming masses in the blurring cheers.

Busia before the second republic was an NLC advisor and before that was an ardent critic of Nkrumah’s economic policies, and an indisputable stringer in his overthrow. He was a master orator who spoke the queen’s language with finesse, but that wasn’t enough to save the economy which was drenched in “depths of debts”. His intellectually backed senate had a lot to do with arcane directives that led to repatriation of foreign investments and workforce in various sectors of his economy, a move that came with a reprise on Ghanaians living in neighbouring Nigeria among other unpopular cuts and schemes in attempt to salvage the economy, whiles his heads of states took turns changing hands. He suffered the fate of Nkrumah on his travel to seek better health by a bloodless coup of the redeemers; one would wonder how these names were coined.

The coup was bloodless because there was less obstruction against it, the masses thought they felt better under decree than statutes Achemapong’s N.R.C government introduced socially feasible projects, amongst them; self-feeding programmes and the nation’s utmost vow to inspire patriotism among citizens, by then the porous economy needed more than a theme song and arable subsistence. Their solutions, rebranding, from NRC to SMC and change of driving hand to right to accommodate their newly purchased Gulfs.SMC II saw a short reign under a year when Lt General Akuffo preps for democratic governance never saw light they were cut short by junior ranked officers, a boiling pot they failed to quench properly a wrong move like Batista’s handling of the Castro’ brothers, Contain rather than annihilate; they always come back to bite.

Gentle Jesus as he was known rode of the gallant call of both the civil service the General public with student activist from various tertiary institutions taking lead, by then many Ghanaians had loathed both the military and the civil government and didn’t know which hand was better, then Rawlings popped up, his flamboyance and verve was what broke him out of death row he was more than adored he was loved.

his slaying of  trialled “corrupt figures” has been a fault line issue with mixed felling depending on Who you asked, his reign sandwiched Ghana third republic a short ride by hilla liman, Ghana’s “Mujca”, a man he help to take the seat or to fill his seat whiles he fuelled for the PNDC long ride through Ghana’s history, Rawlings’ rule was like any junta, his economic development were laudable his personality was mystical. He was feared and loved, gaining popularity among School going kids, his stentorian voice was his trademark. His greatest achievement was the shift to civilian rule which he served 2 terms and at the dawn of the 20th century all eyes were watching his next move. He left making way for Atta mills who lost on his party NDC ticket to the NPP which traces its linage to the Busia’s PP tradition and  transmogrified over the decades.

The NPP under president Kuffor furthered socialist ideals far from their capitalist inclination thanks to reliefs and grants he sought to deliver Ghana from it economic distress his two term tenure was vended to be better than the PNDC and NDC together, an inflated campaign tagline for party power which they lost to Atta mills on his third knockings.

Mills was Meek through his campaign routes, canvassing sometimes of foot in the harsh equatorial heat wave; he won popular support and topped it with electorates of “Tain”. By then his lead contender had relegate interest in a never-ending election.

Soon after his induction oath and its variance from the CJ’s even market women deduced he was a little shy of the man he was before, but his sparing attempts to zip up corruption and strengthen the economy were magnanimous, then death pitchfork struck, the nation lost its first sitting head of state under cloudy circumstance yet to be put to rest, the country was under bereavement, but far shy of Pyongyang public outpour for Kim 1, it was enough to tame political nerves for the imminent election, something mills always prayed for as a man of peace. His void was filled by his god son, a man who became de facto head of state in his latent years as Veep, a man who was no stranger to politics through his days as parliamentary representation and column writing as Mahama’s hammer.

The 2012 presidential election was an attestment of Ghana’s of mature and resilient democracy. The contest was taken from the polling booth to the witness-box in the first publicly broadcasted election petition, a petition that was filled by the NPP and its flag bearer Nana Akuffo Addo a name that resonates through Ghana’s political roadmap, indelible and indisputable. When the verdict read, the plaintiffs fiery quest for triumph had turn blue through the winding tale-telling, like most Ghanaians, it wasn’t in their favour, but they renounce an appeal attempt to redress for peace to thrive

Fast forward to 2016 Mahama is geared up for a second term Akuffo is poised for a third try age, tribe and religion taking lead in the issues that will influence the wavering of the thumb in Dec 7, an election that is going to break grounds regardless who wins.

Throughout Ghana’s history stood a few entities that rode on its voyage to the 21st century, the ever-changing mind of the Ghanaian masses, whose shifting taste and preference lead Ghana through its baton changing leadership, a world ranking media which was either a propagandist tool for government to further is work or a an instrument of rebellion to against government oppression even in the days of military rule; it had been flared, and deterred to speak, but spoke regardless even to death for some. And the watchful eyes of foreign interest like an eagle in the firmament ready to poke and twitch the dinghy towards their ideological buoys, which came with a price.

Ghana’s woes, mainly basic necessities still exiting whiles the corruption most leaders sort to cripple now swamp up entire governments, an impediment shackling her potential growth. Her recompense is drawing contrast to her neighbours and the block, a compromise for it leaders to do more. But like the kente, each tint whether dull or bright contributes to the masterpiece it is; a blockbuster of tales.

NO PERFECT MAN C, 11-20

 

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