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Over the past year or two, a troubling trend has emerged, the use of bogus intellectual arguments to present a one dimensional analysis of complex issues in order to either generate support for the current administration or discredit the opposition.
It has become clear that many analysts and public intellectuals are using their knowledge base and expertise in a spirit of intellectual dishonesty. Our expert analysts, resource persons and public intellectuals are expected to provide comprehensive, rigorous and apolitical analysis of issues so that Ghanaians get a robust sense of the factors being discussed, policies of government and the complexities therein, so that they can reach an informed conclusion.
For the most part, this does not seem to be happening. What we witnessing instead is public intellectuals, resource persons, civil society organizations and analysts creating incomplete analysis and narratives that serve the current administration’s interest. This unfortunate trend is problematic. This trend is creating immoral intellectual posturing where experts know they are not giving comprehensive analysis because they have a political agenda in mind. The other problem is the issue of misinformation. Most Ghanaians are often not aware of the layers complexities of issues when analysis is given from certain bogus and bias technical background.
Experts and commentators who strongly advocated for strict adherence to our procurement laws under the previous administration, have suddenly relaxed their advocacy move and seeing nothing wrong with the unprecedented procurement issues under this administration. Financial analysts who vehemently condemned the Mahama administration for borrowing to implement its projects see nothing wrong with the current administration borrowing over Ghc 70 billion within two years. The current administration cannot point to one …. just one project executed from the amount borrowed. But our financial analysts and political commentators see nothing wrong with this unfortunate development. Our human right crusaders and lawyers supported the establishment of the Emile Short Commission to look into the Ayawaso West Wuagon incident when they know that what happened at the place was purely criminal matter. We are yet to hear their voices on the many scandals recorded under this administration, the unprecedented human right abuses, nepotism and cronyism. Our lawyers and human right advocates rubbished what Mr Bugri Naabu said about Otiko Djaba in connection with Chairman Adam’s death. Our civil society organizations did not find it expedient delving into the famous Tiwa/A-plus leaked tape matter. Our economists and financial analysts see nothing wrong with Ghana losing all the status it gained under the previous administration. The depreciation of the Cedi is no issue to the people who opened fire on the previous administration over same problem. I am not suggesting that analysts, our resource persons, civil society organizations and intellectuals should not have certain positions, they should, what I have problem with is the fact that many do not point out counter arguments to their position and thus lead Ghanaians down the road of incomplete analysis and misinformation. The danger is, when knowledge and intelligence are used to beget bigotry rather than challenge it, what happens is that the nation create a habit where narratives are questioned and blanket statements, lies, falsehoods are taken as the gospel truth. Intellectual dishonesty begets intellectual laziness where arguments are not interrogated but rather taken as fact.
Ghana is at the crossroads both with her economy and all other sectors and that’s the scary truth. Education and leadership right from the country’s national level , where corruption has just taken a life of its own and the gerrymandering with the constitution by the ruling class to suit their egocentric insatiable thirst for more power. Our intellectuals who sat on popular television and radio shows, wrote long articles to condemn and chastise the Mahama administration are staring at the abyss we thought we had successfully sidestepped with the promulgation of the fourth republican constitution. Some of these dishonest I intellectuals and praise singers in the academia still blame Mahama for this government’s abysmal performance. Some have developed their own bogus academic theories to support the administration’s outmoded policies.
Ghana went through same terrible situation under Busia. Human right abuses under the man who was seen as an apostle of liberal democracy, was unprecedented including dismissal of workers, harassment of judges and seizure of properties. Before stepping down, Afrifa had predicted the constitution was going to create an executive monster. Busia accused the courts (judges) of bias and partiality against his government because of how the judges resisted and openly challenged his arbitrary decisions. The trade union congress challenged Busia government’s decision to repeal TUC’s compulsory membership for civil servants, when Buaia lied to Ghanaians that the accumulating debt were a temporary phenomenon, the Central bank for the first time openly disagreed with the Prime Minister arguing that it was as a result of a long term fiscal imbalance. Teachers protested against certain decisions they deemed outmoded and bogus, newspaper editors including editors of state owned new papers strictly applied professional ethics – Busia dismissed some editors of our state owned newspapers because they will not succumb to his tricks and intimidation. Before he took over the administration of Ghana, Busia just like Akufo-Addo, was presented to us domestically and internationally as the symbol of our struggle for true democracy, freedom, liberty and social transformation. But the TUC officials, lawyers, judges, teachers, doctors, religious leaders, civil society organizations and other bodies who supported Busis and the ideas he espoused in opposition, did keep quiet when the man they revered so much and supported started departing from the core principles he preached and espoused. The trend is opposite under Nana Akufo-Addo; our intellectuals etc see nothing wrong with the gross incompetence of the President and his government, his nepotism and clannism, suppression of his political opponents, establishment of militia groups, cronyism and his desire to cling to power. Those who stand up against the administration’s backward policies and repressive antics are crucified for following the path of righteousness and like great crusaders, prophets and revolutionaries, they have been branded as anti-development, renegades, by the government and its propagandists. You realise that just after the 2016 election many intellectuals,civil society organizations started to obscure over vital issues with regard to NPP government policies that had they raised their voices earlier, we would not, today be staring at a spectacular economic failure of the decades after Greece, something even die-hard supporters of the NPP allude to. How can you ask the intellectuals, civil society organization heads to come forth and point out the ills of the NPP when themselves are doing consultancy and supply businesses with the system now commonly referred to as TENDERPRENEURSHIP. It is therefore not easy for those dishonest intellectuals to objectively castigate the corruption in this administration, procurement laws breaches without getting enmeshed in it. The difference between the Busia era and what we witnessing today under Akufo-Addo is that, the TUC, lawyers, judges, nurses, intellectuals who supported Busia in opposition kept his administration on its toes and made sure Busia adhered to the principles he preached.