Time to exhibit high levels of patriotism

BY: Daily Graphic
Library photo
Library photo

The country is facing some hard economic challenges, including the cedi depreciation and a surging inflation. This has brought in its wake diverse viewpoints as to what the country must do and not do to reverse the worrying trend.

In today’s edition, we have published some perspectives proffered by five groups on how to stabilise the economy.

An economist and statesman, Kwame Pianim, is urging national support to drive the economy out of its current challenges.

Alternatively, some 80 or so members of the Majority Caucus in Parliament are asking the President to remove the Minister of Finance and the Minister of State at the ministry from office now to restore confidence in the ailing economy. (See both stories on the front page)

Relatedly, the Minority in Parliament has triggered a vote of censure to impeach the Minister of Finance for the ailing economy. (See story on page 17)

The Trades Union Congress, for its part, is calling on the government to provide information about where the country is heading in the current hardship to restore hope to the citizenry, especially employers and workers while the Ghana Employers Association opines that although businesses are in one of the most difficult times, it is time to work together as stakeholders to help the economy to bounce back. (See stories on the spread).

For us at the Daily Graphic, this is the time to exhibit a high level of patriotism and promote national consensus. After all the crisis facing us, as a nation we are bigger than any individual or political party.

The solution for us must therefore not be one of partisan consideration but a nation-first approach.

It is surprising that within government party, there seems to be rebellion which is giving an indication that public opinion is against the economic management processes. This is not the time for the country’s leadership to be obstinate but to open up for alternative policy ideas and propositions.

We at the Daily Graphic will appeal to national statesmen to come on board. Fortunately, Kwame Pianim has shared his thoughts on the way forward. We need more of such voices from our statesmen to help navigate the country out of its current economic challenges.

At this stage, we need comprehensive assessment of what ought to be done. Asking the Finance Minister to be removed from post may be simplistic and may not be the solution . We need to think through properly and adopt the right policies, decisions and programmes which are centred on how to address the economic challenges.

For instance, at the core of our challenges is the structure of the economy which makes us import-driven, which means that there is always pressure on the Ghanaian cedi because there is always demand for US dollars. Beyond that, the overdependence on imported goods is making it difficult for our manufacturing sector to grow in order to generate jobs for the people.

As a country, we have failed miserably at looking at the bigger picture of changing the structure of the economy in a manner that will transform the life of the average Ghanaian. All our policies and economic interventions have been short term in nature, thereby making us go round in circles and not growing the real economy at a sustainable manner. We are not making the needed progress we ought to make because of the ad hoc measures which we keep adopting.

For us, one long-term solution will be to find ways of cutting down on our import-dependence nature and increase investment in agriculture to feed our local manufacturing sector to help strengthen the economy.

Additionally, it is our strongest view that a nation without patriotic citizens is a lost one. Throughout the world, acts of patriotism make nations stronger. For this reason, we all need to put on our patriotic armoury, have a sense of belonging to our motherland and work collectively to overcome the staggering challenges.

There is no better time than now to rally together as a nation to win this economic war.