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Thu, Sep

Let’s return to time-tested values

President Akufo-Addo tapping Mr Haruna Esseku (seated), a former Chairman of the NPP, during the 57th Republic Day in Accra. Looking on are some senior citizens

Ghanaians have observed yet another Republic Day, the day on which the government honours senior citizens throughout the country.

Republic Day, also known as Senior Citizens Day, has become part of the major events of the year, on which occasion the government organises a luncheon for those who have served in various capacities on the farms, in the markets, offices and factories.

These groups of people have, in various ways as farmers, fishermen, artisans and office workers, contributed their quota to nation building.

We are convinced that it is for this reason that the government instituted the Senior Citizens Day to celebrate their lives and contributions to the development of the nation.

All the people who have contributed to the development of the nation cannot all make it to the Senior Citizens Day, but such people may be looking up to the government to put in place mechanisms that would make them eke out better living.

It is against this backdrop that the Daily Graphic looks forward to the day when all pensioners will enjoy a more dignified pension scheme and the scope expanded to include informal sector workers such as farmers, fishermen and artisans.

We are happy, however, that the President, while interacting with the senior citizens, hinted of plans by the government to set up pension arrangements for farmers in major cash crop agricultural sectors and small-scale business associations across the country.

He also said the government remained committed to providing the aged with a Free Pass to enable them to ride for free on all public transportation.

But we believe that all these elaborate arrangements to make life comfortable not just for the aged but all Ghanaians can succeed only if Ghanaians return to values such as integrity, discipline and respect for the elderly.

For some years now, discipline appears to have broken down in the country, with a section of the population taking the law into their own hands.

Consequently, our roads have become unsafe as the motoring public have refused to respect road traffic regulations; open spaces everywhere have been littered with garbage; galamsey is destroying the environment and the public purse is under siege from some of the people who are paid by the taxpayer to protect public funds.

Perhaps, that is why the President has urged senior citizens to speak against societal ills, including corruption, social and economic injustice, crime, the illegal mining menace and the new phenomenon of vigilantism.

We are sure the majority of our senior citizens today cannot understand why there is such high level of indiscipline in the country, especially among the youth.
Years back, society held on strictly to many values, including respect for the elderly, and in those years of effective public transportation, young persons got up to give their seats in buses for the elderly.

Teachers also did not spare the rod to ensure that schoolchildren kept the regulations in our schools.

Presently, educational authorities have outlawed corporal punishment, a decision which has emboldened some parents to attack teachers for daring to discipline their children.

Something has really gone amiss in our society and we urge all to join hands to fight indiscipline and push for a return to time-tested values such as discipline, integrity, honesty and respect for the elderly.