A finance lecturer at the University of Ghana Business School, Prof. Godfred Bokpin has argued that Ghana cannot celebrate its independence while socioeconomic progress is still being hampered by corruption and nepotism.
In his view, the present economic malaise is a result of these deeply ingrained social vices that are going unchecked.
Prof. Bokpin said on Citi Prime News that until the trend is reversed, Ghana will continue to lag behind despite gaining colonial freedom some 66 years ago.
“I think that what is also important is that merely spending on independence means nothing. We need clear timelines and targets to guide our next celebration and more importantly, during the 67th celebration, we should look forward to gaining independence from corruption, nepotism and low productivity.”
“We must look forward to something worth celebrating. It is not enough to spend millions of Ghana cedis to celebrate every 12 months. There are challenges and so if we can’t gain independence from corruption then it is not worth celebrating anything anymore.”
Ghana’s economic metrics have recently been on the decline, with over 50% inflation and a depreciating cedi driving up living expenses.
In order to help the economy recover, the government has been forced to turn to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $3 billion extended loan facility.
The government has implemented a domestic debt exchange program as part of steps to rescue the faltering economy and to satisfy the requirements of the IMF for assistance.
“What it is for us is to use the celebration to look at what the major misses are and what the major hits have been. But if you look at our trajectory since independence, it doesn’t look like we have gained independence. We have been lying to ourselves all this while. Whatever we sought to gain from our independence in 1957 in terms of having control and direction of our economy have not been achieved.”
“Ghana has out of these 66 years spent quality time under the direction, guidance and supervision of the West. So we should really think of independence. We have not been able to turn the aspirations and intents into real sustainable development,” Prof. Bokpin added.