The membership of Ghana Leadership Union (GLU) have been alerted to the Japanese grant of $56 million to build a Motorway Interchange. We are also aware of the many generous grants from European and North American and other developed nations.
While we appreciate the goodwill of all nations in helping Ghana solve our problems, the members feel almost unanimously that it is time Ghana Government came out with a solid long term plan and execute to ease the traffic congestion in Accra as well as other life-threatening issues like the poor roads, environmental filth, open gutters and the malaria deaths.
Motorway Interchanges have had a way of attracting mega million price tags. The media likes them. Politicians like to cut sods! There are many Interchanges reported in many areas of Ghana’s metro areas. However members of GLU, most of who are professionals who have lived or still live and work overseas and witnessed how such problems are solved, are not happy with handouts and the begging policies that contradict the President’s “Ghana Beyond Aid” mantra!
Ghana deserves more than these short term solutions! It is a shame for most of us to return home and see the filthy environment, the open gutters, the annual flooding due to unplanned sewage systems, the unstable and unreliable electricity delivery despite the forced prepaid system. It is time to act!
We also feel horrified to read and see thousands of our children and fellow Ghanaians die annually due to malaria! A UN report indicates more than 80 out of every 1,000 children born in Ghana do not reach the age of five. Why? Part of our national poverty comes from the waste of capital, estimated in excess of $5 Billion, on preventable deaths!
Within the last 40 years the world has seen nations in Asia pull themselves out of poverty, and attract joint venture capital to build factories in their nations and create high paying jobs. Our nation in the mean time has been experimenting with policies of envy, super-sales taxes and tariffs, and of greed and selfishness in power. Our leadership has shut out and excluded our trained manpower of the last half century, and made no effort to attract them home. It is a shame!
For Ghana to be beyond aid, it demands a long term planning with inputs from Ghanaians scattered around the world who wish our nation well. Asians have done a good job catching up to America in the last three to four decades, thanks to the open culture of America, and the culture of modesty and openness to learn of the Asians.
For Highways, the Germans have been pioneers in high speed highways. However, for highway construction for optimum traffic flow, nobody had advanced like California in the USA. Highway Interchanges in the largest population State in America has been developed to a fine art at the lowest cost and lowest inconvenience to drivers! GLU has members with extensive experience as Civil Engineers and Transportation Engineers!
But does our Government have the common decency, and concern to ask? No!
It seems all the big boys want are the mega projects so they can siphon some of the money away. Projects like Millennium Challenge Account funded George Bush Highway N4 seem to take extra years of delay once our Government has any involvement. This mentality must stop!
To ease traffic congestion in a metro area like Accra or Kumasi GLU recommends the design and construction of multi-lane nonstop highways around Accra and other cities, as done in cities line Indianapolis and Dallas/Fort-Worth, for example.
We strongly recommend the President to use the services of the many Engineers with decades of cumulative experiences around the world who are living in Ghana now, and are being ignored for obvious reasons. No nation can develop without the trained and skilled human resource talent of those who have travelled and seen progress by others. That is our Ghana Diaspora. A database for planning is a must, if Government is to show a sense of seriousness.
Nations can rise even from ashes of massacre and defeat. The Jews have proven it. Japan, and Singapore, Taiwan, India and China have demonstrated it.
Ghana has never fallen from war and defeat. But some have suggested Ghana falls within a close definition of a failed state. Our debts alone are beyond our ability to pay! No! We can do better! We can also stand up and hold our own!
Long live Ghana.
Dr. Kwaku A. Danso, Intn’l President, Ghana Leadership Union
Ofori Ampofo- President- Ghana
Dr. Emmanuel K. Ameyaw, Vice President- Ghana