Friday, 22 January 2016


In recent times, development organizations have come to adopt a participatory approach in undertaking developmental projects in rural areas and places where a lot is desired in terms of development. As a developer whose interest lies in the use of communication tools in facilitating development, it baffles me to see the neglect of the very crucial element of culture that most people living in very remote and under developed areas cling on to by development organizations that usually militates against steady progress expected by these organizations. Ghana committed itself to the tenets of the Millennium Development Goals in September 2001. To ensure full implementation of these goals, it mainstreamed them into the respective national development policy frameworks. According to the Ghana MDG’s 2015 report, progress towards the attainment of the MDGs has been reported on annually since 2002 in Annual Progress Reports on the implementation of national development policy frameworks. Special MDG reports have also been prepared biennially to examine trends and to assess the supporting environment and resources needed to attain the goals.

Interestingly, a search through these numerous reports shows no inclusion of language as a resource needed to attain these goals. Although Ghana’s progress has been mixed (similar to that of a number of Sub Saharan African states) with targets such as halving extreme poverty (MDG1A), halving the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water (MDG 7B), universal primary education (MDG 2A) and gender parity in primary school (MDG 3) have been attained. Substantial progress has been made in reducing HIV prevalence (MDG 6C), access to ICT (MDG 8F) and reducing the proportion of people suffering from hunger. However, only slow progress has been made on full and productive employment (MDG 1B), equal share of women in non-agriculture wage employment, and women’s involvement in governance (MDG 3), reducing under-5 and child mortality (MDG 4), reducing maternal mortality (MDG 5), reversing environmental resource loss and improving sanitation (MDG 7)[Ghana’s Millennium Development Goals 2015 Report, pg. vi].With the MDG’s dovetailing into SDG’s (Sustainable Development Goals), it’s important that aside been guided by experiences gathered in the execution of policies and programmes within the MDG framework, we as a country utilize language as a means to achieving the 17 SDG’s.

Unfortunately, Africa is the only continent where language is used to define us. Most people have classified Africa into Anglophone, Lusophone and Francophone sections probably as a result of our ties with our ‘colonial masters’. African societies are highly multilingual and polyglothic using their mother tongue in their local environment and any other inter-ethnic lingua franca once they leave their environment. Unfortunately, these indigenous languages are not relevant means of mass media and not widely used in formal education. These languages are unfortunately not the languages of national governments and languages of mass communication are hardly the languages of the people. These been the language situation in Africa is very alarming and detriment to our emancipation. Considering Ghana as an ideal example, 51% of total annual broadcast hours is dedicated to English alone. It leaves the rest for all the many Ghanaian and other African languages. This authenticates the linguistic and communication discrepancy/mismatch on the African continent and this has very serious consequences on the development efforts of the African people.

In a case study titled ‘MULTILINGUALISM IN GHANA’ by Bodomon Adams (1998), he classifies languages in Ghana into 3. They include;

A.   Indigenous Languages:

·        Akan; Fante, Bono, Kwahu, Akuapem, Asante, Akyem etc

·        Mabia; Dagbani, Kusa, Mampruli, Gruni, Waale etc

·        Gbe; Ewe, Fon, Aja, Mina.

·        Gruma; Konkomba, Maba, Baasari.

·        Guan; Gonja, Nchumbru, Krachi, Gichode, Nawuri, Nkonya, Cherepon, Larteh, Ewutu, Efutu.

·        Ga-Adangbe; Ga, Adangbe.

·        Nzema; Nzema, Sehwi, Anyi(Aowin), Ahanta, and Anofu(Chakosi)

·        Grussi; Kassim, Issalim(Sisala), Chakali, Tampluma, Vagala, Mo

·        Buem; Adele, Lelemu, Bowin, Sekpele, Siwu, Santrofi, Logba, Avatime

·        Nafaanra; Nkuraena, Nafaanra and Ntrubo-Chala


B.    Other African Languages:

·        Chadic

·        Hausa

·        Mande Languages (Ligbi, Bisa)


C.   Foreign Languages:

·        English

·        Arabic

·        French

It is important that we are exposed to these classifications so we can adequately and appropriately be informed on how to effectively communicate with these groups in achieving the 17 goals outlined in the SDG’s.

Language has a symbolic function. There exist a tight relationship between language and ethnicity in many parts of the world. Language is also seen as a granary of the world view of its speakers. It expresses and best contains the indigenous belief systems of the people. New belief systems are sometimes immediately added to the existing belief systems. Development is only possible with the massive involvement of the people themselves and not only the elite. This importantly puts the indigenous language at the center of development discourse. Therefore, there is the need to evolve the language paradigm of development to be called development linguistics.

Summarily, if Africa and specifically Ghana would be able to excellent perform or achieve the SDG’s within the next 15years and also be economically prosperous, emphasis should be placed on language and other indigenous tools in communicating and ensuring effective participation of all and sundry in the development process. Mass media is a very crucial tool but a lot of work has to be done through community radio broadcasting, community theatre, and many other art forms. There is no doubt the role programs like by the fireside and concert parties have played in the development process of the people.

Governments must involve all stakeholders and create enabling environments for partnership opportunities between Aid organization, CSO’s and social enterprises as well as start-ups. When this is done, we can move at a faster pace and development would be much more decentralized.

Sampson Adotey Jnr
Senior Year, UDS
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Integrated Development Studies (Development Communication Option)

Founder/Team Lead- DORTS ( A non-profit organization that uses indigenous communication tools in education rural communities on issues relating to Health, Education, Civil Rights, Agriculture etc. )
Volunteer, Odekro (
Tel: 0243453487/0205737034

Thursday, 21 January 2016


As Africans we must consider the shift in thinking analogous to the shift required to found the United States in the 1700's. Prior to the dramatic revolutions in political thought of the 17th and 18th centuries, the Prosperity of a European Kingdom or Country depended in large part on the quality of the King (perhaps Queen in the case of the United Kingdom ). If you had a good King, then you had a good Kingdom. If the King was a great and Wise Leader, then the Kingdom might Prosper as a result. This later proved to be unsustainable.
Now compare the good King Model frame of reference with the approach taken at the Founding of the United States. The Critical questions at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 was not "who should be President or Secretary of State? Who should lead us? Who is the Wisest among us? Who would be the best King?" NO, the Founders of the Country concentrated on such questions as "What processes can we create that will give us good Presidents long after we are dead and gone? What type of enduring Country do we want to build? On what Principles? How should it Operate? What guidelines and Mechanisms should we construct that will give us the kind of Country we envision? "
Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and John Adams were not charismatic visionary leaders in the "it all depends on me" mode. No, they were organizational visionaries. They created a Constitution to which they and all future leaders would be subservient. They focused on building a Country. They took an architectural approach. They were clock builders; not time tellers. A Clock of a Republic based on human values and Ideals


It is that time of the year where many a labour Union will like to pressurize Government to meet its demands. It is also the season where Government is likely to make a lot of promises and agree to meet a number of demands made by labour Unions and other organizations. Already some labour organizations have announced their desire to embark on various strike actions and demonstrations.

It is worth noting that it is that era where political parties in opposition will like to take advantage of every disagreement between Government and its employees or other pressure groups in order to show that they are the best and should be given the mandate, come November, 7.

Strikes and demonstrations are some of the legitimate means by which people can register their dissatisfaction about decisions that are made by Government or people with decision making authority. It is also a means of hammering home one's needs, but when it has become a ritual where dialogue and negotiations as options have not been fully explored or exhausted, then as a country we have every reason to be worried.

In any case we all know that the real solutions are not gotten through strikes and demonstrations because no matter the number of times an organization or a group of people embark on demonstrations and strikes, the problems can only be resolved at the negotiation table.

As a country on the move, we can only continuously work towards becoming better in how issues that affect us are handled. It is due to the above reason that we have established bodies like the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission and the National Labour Commission with structures and processes that should be used in settling labour related disagreements. In order to move forward, we must respect our various  institutions in charge of handling affairs at various levels knowing that strong institutions can only be built when we use due process in resolving disagreements rather than resorting to threats, coercion, strikes and demonstrations.

Government must make sure every expenditure is highly justified in this election year but must also not forget to be proactive and reasonably responsive towards the demands of its employees while maintaining the highest level of fiscal discipline.
Government must not by any means fall for the temptations that come with an election year spending on wages and salaries that are not commensurate with the level of productivity since that will leave the country in a bad financial state after the elections.

Government must be bold and decisive in carrying out its programs and projects that must go a long way to benefit the country as a whole. In fact, if there is any time where Government must hold the wires even though the heavens may fall, this is the moment. The meat must never be allowed to get to the bones again.

Employees on the other  hand must be realistic in their demands and be determined to fight for what rightfully belongs to them through the existing structures. 
Ghanaian workers must make sure that they obey rules and regulations particularly made for labour dispute resolutions. If we all agree for a law to be made and later seen to be circumventing and breaking it, then what is the use of promulgating the law in the first place? It is always saddening to hear leaders of worker groups boasting of their refusal to adhere to rulings given by mandated institutions for labour dispute

They must also not forget to work towards increased productivity knowing very well that to whom much is given, much is expected.
They must not use strikes and demonstrations as the major means towards hammering home their demands. They must rather tread the path of dialogue and negotiations, ready and willing to reasonably compromise.

Both government and its employees and other pressure groups must be transparent in their dealings and maintain ultimate good faith always, giving respect to the institutions and structures put in place towards resolving labour disputes.

The Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) as well as the National Labour Commission (NLC) must be well resourced and seen to be working for positive results. These bodies must be proactive and  timeous in discharging their duties.

Opposition parties must not just jump into the fray and criticize, they must be able to provide viable alternatives to how problems are being handled and how they would have handled the situation if they were in government.

In all, putting Ghana first must be everyone's priority no matter where he or she stands. For that is the only way we can build the country and make decisions that are not just focused on 2016 elections but most importantly the future generation.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016


On that warm evening, he declared, 'Those who want to measure the height of achievements should measure the depth of the valley from which we came' the scene was an African Union Summit and the man behind this statement is the late Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. In times past, the National Union of Ghana Students engineered revolutions and regimental transitions, and influenced government’s policy on education and the development of the youth

Today, the story is a pale shadow of that glory. It is therefore not surprising that the relevance of our existence as a union is being questioned I sincerely believe in my heart that we must constitute the conscience of the over 12 million students across the country and imbibe objectivity into our discourse. NUGS must reclaim its glory!

To do so, it begins with making COMPETENCE, SELFLESSNESS, HARDWORKING, and above all , HUMILITY as the pivot our decision making process. History chronicles milestones in the pages of the earth what students have been able to do with their might and main, and energy. The evidence is not far to fetch.

The Student movement is basically, works by students to cause political, environmental, economic, or social change. Student groups have influenced greater political events on this continent, and all over the world. The movement grows because it’s whom we are; because it is in our nature to see positive changes in society; because it is our nature to be the voice for the voiceless. Our very
nature involves connecting with brothers and sisters around the world. As students, we need to create and belong to something that is bigger than our individual institution and ourselves.


History sparkles with the life stories of Africans of the century who placed the lives of fellow men above theirs, and who respected principle other than possessions. History gave us ample evidence of how they used their lives to better the lives of the masses. Yet, history has been oblivious of the very trait that glued them to their visions to liberate all Africans and unite them.
The student movement has seen the birth of the greatest African leaders. The movement ‘groomed’ them and presented them to the world in whole.

Kwame Nkrumah (Ghana’s first president), J.B Danquah (First President of West African Students union), Patrice Lumumba (Congo’s first President), Steve Biko (Founder of South African students Union (SASO) and Black Consciousness Movement), Nelson Mandela (the First black president of South Africa), Robert Sobukwe (Founder of South African Congress) who spoke of the need for south Africans to liberate themselves without the help of non - Africans, whose strong convictions inspired many other individuals and organizations involved in the anti- apartheid movement. Nobel men like Juvenal Habyarimana, who chaired the committee for peace and National Unity and subsequently became the president of Rwanda from 1973 to 1994. These and many others were born out from the students’ movement. These can only be said of as the fond
memories of the movement.

On August 1925, twenty-one law students, led by Lapido Solanke and Herbert Bankole-Bright, somewhere in London, the West African students Union was founded. They spearheaded a campaign that improved the welfare of all African students in London, with J.B Danquah becoming its first president. They promoted political research and self-determination of the African.

Somewhere in December 1945, history saw the birth of The West African National Secretariat (WANS) - a Pan-Africanist movement founded by Kwame Nkrumah, together with like-minded individuals such as Wallace-Johnson, Bankole Akpata, Kojo Botsio and Bankole Awoonor-Renar. That is where the united movement to liberate all African countries from the
colonialists began. The students’ movement spanned the road to independence. And we all know the events that followed afterwards.

In the days of the Preacher man who took the first step of the march to Washington, students took the march with him. The civil right movement, led by Martin Luther King Jnr., explores the new generation of students leaders in the early 1960’s who fought segregation by making their voices
heard and exercising their first amendment rights. Within those periods, when in 1960 four African American college students launched the sit-in movement by refusing to leave their counter stools after being serviced in the whites-only section. The movement was living its rightful

Through the non -violent coordinating committee, the young activists took direct action to end segregation and break down barriers in voting rights, education and the workplace by organizing sits-ins marches and voter registration drives.

Not so far away from where they celebrated Nelson Mandela, In Soweto (in the 1970s), up to 20,000 high school students rose up to protest a law forcing them to speak English and Afrikaans- A language that, then not-so-well-known Archbishop Desmond Tutu, called ‘the language of
the oppressor”.

It still stands on the memory of the movement the response from the then government. Police response was rapid and brutal. And when the dogs they set on school children were
beaten, security forces opened fire, killing between about four dozens of students. A children’s graveyard outside the town of Soweto is a living testament to what has been stated above. The students’ movement took the first walk to freedom. Ask history!

Not so long ago, In North Africa, students instigated and led a revolution that saw to the overthrowing of a 30 year dictatorships that ruled through brutality and oppression as
the leading example to the world. The movement overthrew dictatorship in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and Yemen in what came to stand as the Jasmine Revolution. Even today, the procession and occupation at ‘Tahir square’ for 18 days stands as a symbol for the new wave of struggle of the
student movement throughout the world. The method of processing and occupying the square has become a symbol of new mobilizations.
We have taken to the streets, employed the philosophy of non-violence, demonstrated and faced down repression from governments. But, yet the movement marches forward.

Not so long ago, In Chile (Latin America), when the government wanted to privatize their education system, the movement brought onto a scene major demonstrations not ever seen in decades. Chilean students pushed forward tremendous mobilizations, using their great deal of creativity and bravery, against the privatization of public education.

Through all these struggles, students have faced much resistance and repression. Governments make efforts to silence, by force (in all methods they can employ) the indignant shout of the students. The movement has seen hundreds killed and more than thousands taken as political prisoners. The movement has seen thousands of students torn apart with bombs, tear gas, rubber bullets, and lethal weapons. But, despite all these, we march forward!

The lessons learnt

In all these we have learnt great lessons-mainly, because just like every movement, there ought to be some mistakes. We have learnt from the moment of great crises and the moments of victory. We have learnt effective organization is imperative in the struggle.
We have learnt that if we raise high the flag of students’ unity, reviving the spirits and hard work of the founding fathers, we shall create the key combination of the youth’s
explosive energy and the experience of our founding fathers to cause positive revolutions in society.
Another lesson we have learnt is that, each struggle of students and the youth as a whole should serve the purpose of strengthening its organizations, in a democratic, independent way, united for common good. And these organizations should have one of their priorities creating
international connections.

We have learnt that, regardless of the uneven development in our countries, regardless of our cultural differences, there is one thing we are sure of- there is a common reality our generation is facing. And if it is affecting us as a whole, then we must answer as a whole. We have learnt that if we are to establish strong bonds among youth organizations, we shall be in a better position
to struggle and dream of a better future.
We have learnt that, with the combative spirit, we can fight and fearlessly march onward.

The way forward

Seated here are great personalities that will within the shortest possible time be in the helm of affairs in building this nation.

I invite all of us; all the organizations of students and the youth to march forward this struggle. The world needs you. Africa needs you!

We need to crystallize the needs and aspirations of all students across the continent and to seek to make known and channel their grievances through the appropriate structures.

Where possible, we need to put into effect programs designed to meet the needs of the 21 st century students and to act on a collective basis in an effort to solving such needs that affect us collectively. ‘When the master of the house lacks wisdom, the doctor's work is useless’, today's African students movement must endeavor to practice the mantra of emancipation of students
through dialogue and the philosophy of nonviolence; yet in disciplining, you must use both stick and carrot. When the carrot is broken, the stick must be applied. We need to increase the degree of contacts not only in Africa, but also in other parts of the world. We must, as a matter of urgency avoid all forms of individualism, and also advance to eschew the high propensity to give up in the midst of challenges. We therefore, have to as a matter of importance, synergize our internal visions to ensure the achievement of that pinnacle.

We have to ensure that students all across the continent are always treated with dignity and with respect. A clear thinking leader is a sign of stability and an agent for change in society, this is the type of leaders that we need now.
We need to, still, protect the interests of students and to act as a pressure group on all institutions and organizations for the benefit of all students. We have to build our capacities, improve our individual selves so that we contribute largely to the policy direction taken by the various institutions on social, political and other levels.

A group of sheep led by a lion can overcome a group of lions led by a sheep. We should remain intransigent on the fact that with resilience advocacy, the students’ movement
shall forever remain resolute.

We march on! We are many, but with one struggle.

Long Live Africa !!!
Long Live Ghana!!

Paul Worlanyo

Monday, 18 January 2016


have observed with interest all the discussion ongoing in Ghana regarding the ex-GITMO detainees being housed in Ghana. Some have made good points whilst others have been utterly imbecilic in their remarks and utterances. But overall, the debate has been both eye opening and lacking in perspective. Allow me to postulate on the issue a little bit.

First of all, the discussion about whether we accept or reject the detainees did not factor in a very important element in our relationship as a nation (our self-reliance, our dependencies, and our past and future friends) to the US, our role in the international community, along with a basic understanding of the aims and modes operandi of these Al-Qaeda and DAESH-related terror groups. Let me take these THREE one at a time:

1. Ghana as a nation.
In the hypothetical scenario where Ghana was a nation strong enough to be self-reliant and with the ability to call our shots independent of foreign influence, Ghana should have never accepted the GITMO detainees. We as a country, then, would not have needed anything from the US, from economic and political cooperation to security cooperation. But here are we where are not. And the decision to accept the GITMO detainees was done in the current climate we find ourselves in as nation and any analysis of the situation that does not vigorously take into account our current politico-socioeconomic environment bends towards political ignorance and useless blowing of hot air without any semblance of lived experience (knowledge). But what exactly is our politico-socioeconomic reality of the day?

First, Ghana imports a lot of basic commodities that we need and is heavily reliant on exportation of raw materials and primary products, mainly to the EU and US. We are reliant on EU and US funded and dominated financial institutions for money to fund our basic everyday governance. We as an open economy are very much at the mercy of US and UK speculators for the health and soundness of our economy. If S&P or Moody’s downgrade our economy to C or E or F, we are screwed forever since we are dependent on borrowing money on the international market to fund even building toilets in this country. Make no mistake, these rating agencies are politically ran and are biased to the bone. They do the bidding of the chiefs of politics and industry of the Western world. We are a nation completely in the thralls of the Western Free market capitalism. But not to border completely on the negative appraisal, lets look at the relatively good press we get in the West. Ghana gets relatively good press as compared to the rest of Sub-Saharan Africa so out here, even though we have no highest mountains or Seregentis or Pyramids, we still get quite a significant number of tourists per capita that helps our economy.

The past three US presidents have all visited Ghana, some quite early in their presidency that helps to direct more tourist and investment attractions our way. Do you think that Kofi Anan was selected as UN secretary general because he/and Ghana was the most qualified? His selection put Ghana on the global map and it was because we were friends with America. Nothing comes free. They will come knocking for the return favors they’ve given. So they came and we are blabbing away about how unfair it is to accept detainees? Have people been living under rocks all this while? In a relationship, you give, and you take. Our relationship is asymmetrical right now, no question about it, we are (in all likelihood) giving more than we are taking. But that is a discussion for another day. We can look forward to changing our internal situation to ensure that the relationship moves on to a more symmetrical one. But today, on the GITMO detainees, is not the time nor place for that discussion.

2. Our Role in the Int’l Community
Ghana has been at the forefront of global conflicts since our inception as a state. The Osagyefo decided to make Ghana a non-aligned state, with the help of Nehru and others creating the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM). But he himself could not escape the thralls of the cold war and was deposed by the Americans for his alleged communists sympathies and actions. Ghana, as part of the UN has been involved in conflicts around the world for decades now. It must be acknowledged that the UN to many supranationalist groups is an illegitimate organization, and our involvement with it already puts us at the firing line of these groups including DAESH and Al-Qaeda and their affiliates. Especially critical in this regard is our commitment over the decades, to provision of peacekeeping personnel to the UN. Ghana, a country 48th in terms of population, 91st ranked in terms of economy, and 103rd ranked in terms of military is among the top ten contributors to the UN peacekeeping missions around the world.

We have sent our soldiers to every nook and cranny of the world, from Asia to Europe, to the Middle East, and to our backyards in Africa here. When we were sending all those brave young men and women around the world, did we forget that we might have been creating enemies? The war on terror is just the current phase of the global conflict cycle and we as a nation, is at the thick of affairs whether we acknowledge it or not. Too many decisions have been made over the years that have led us to this day and we have a lot more to do to dig ourselves out of this current situation than we think we have to do at the moment. But can we really dig ourselves out of the situation? And exactly what is the situation?
3. The Modes Operandi of DAESH, Al-Qaeda and their surrogates
Now, if you listen to the excuses given for most DAESH and Al-Qaeda related attacks, including the one in Burkina Faso, it has the same tone and tinge to it. They are fighting infidels and specifically, infidels who dare send their kafir soldiers to fight against the interest of the Muslim Ummah as they see it or the Caliphate in particular in the case of DAESH. We had soldiers in Lebanon, actually, one of our most noteworthy and longstanding contributions to the UN peacekeeping system in the world. We had/ and still have soldiers and policemen & women in Sudan and South Sudan. We have soldiers in Mali. We had soldiers in Liberia, Sierra Leone and countless others. The reason why I am mentioning all these places is that most of the countries on the list that Ghana has sent soldiers to are partly fighting because of religious reasons, some of which are steeped deeply in global Jihadist networks. Bin Laden was holed up in Sudan long before 9/11 and the groundwork he laid helped create the brutal Janjaweed Arab militia and others like them in Sudan, yet we were there, in the thick of affairs. Why are we all of a sudden afraid to have our hands in terror related matters? DAESH has all the ammunition they need or better still the excuses they can use to attack Ghana. They don’t need our *acceptance of GITMO detainees to attack us. Their attacks are often illogical and disparate. You are treating them as if they use the same logic you and I use in our calculations. They don’t.

People still steeped in rape culture and slavery, to the extent that they will release a guide on how to rape your female slaves, will not listen to your excuses and analysis as to how we are or are not a target. Every country is a target. To that end, we are going to forever be a target as long as DAESH exists and we hold on to our values of pluralism and multiculturalism. When DAESH took over northern Iraq, they gave the Christians and non-Sunni Muslims a choice, convert to Sunni Islam, leave, become a slave, or die. Ghana is about 60% Christian living peacefully, for the most part, with the 17% or so Muslim minority. The simple fact of our existence is already reason enough to attack us. They don’t need further excuses. And the excuses they will need, we already have provided them with it over the ages. The fact that I, a Muslim am friends with Christians is an excuse enough to brand me a heretic and an infidel or munafiq. We are steeped in a global order that the DAESH puny caliphate despises so we are whether we like it or not, already in the firing line. The question is whether we want to be trumpeting our position as diametrically opposed to DAESH and their likes for everybody to hear. The way forward!

Did Burkina Faso accept GITMO detainees? I don’t think they did. They did not publicize it if they did. Yet AQIM attacked Ouagadougou, for reasons that we are just as culpable in the eyes of the terrorist organization. Did Indonesia accept GITMO detainees? I don’t think so. But DAESH related fighters in Jakarta for reasons that we are even more culpable than Indonesia attacked them. But, given our current situation, could we have been more helpful to ourselves than we currently are? Absolutely. DAESH and Al-Qaeda and AQIM have way too much on their hands now to be able to mount attacks on all the infidel nations of the world or all nations they perceive to have wronged them. Yet, we are at the mountaintops, with loudspeakers and megaphones, telling the terror groups, “WE ARE HERE. NOTICE US. NOTICE US. WE ARE HERE. NOTICE US.” Free media and civic dialogue is very important to any democratic society but we need to be responsible in how we exercise that right and privilege. When journalists are on social media proclaiming Ghana as the next target after such horrific incidents in Ouagadougou, it bothers on pathology. We have become pathological in our exercise of free speech and civic dialogue and probing. The fact that you have the right o say something doesn’t mean you should. But enough of berating the irresponsible in the Ghanaian media landscape. Exactly how do we deal with this?

Since DAESH and Al-Qaeda have become franchises, allowing individuals with tenuous links to the groups to create cells and cause havoc, there are a few things that we can realistically do to prevent an attack. First of all, if you look at Jakarta, San Bernardino, Paris, Beirut, and Ouagadougou among others, one fact keeps coming again, and again: the role of returnee Jihadists, specifically those who went to Syria/Iraq/Afghanistan to fight and then went back to their respective countries. Ghana must ban all travel to these countries if not as part of a UN or Red Cross/Crescent or Doctors Without Borders or any such humanitarian organization. We cannot have our young men and women going there and getting radicalized and coming back to cause havoc in our country. We must also ensure that -through law (not some arbitrary arrests and detentions)  - all persons who travel to fight alongside Jihadists in those countries have their citizenship revoked and their ability to return to Ghana put asunder. Ghana must ensure that no radical preachers be allowed in Ghana.

In Saudi Arabia, where radical preaching is abound, they have instituted a policy to have all Friday sermons pre-approved by the government so as to stem the tide of radical preachers preaching hate and Jihad. Religious freedom aside, you cannot preach things that are detrimental to the safety of the Ghanaian polity. As a fellow from the north of Ghana, and from a family of Imams, I can assure you that we have Imams who preach vitriol and have the potential of radicalizing young and impressionable minds. But also, coming from a family of Imams, I can attest to the fact that Ghanaian Muslims are not as easily moved to Jihadist tendencies. And so, those who are already talking about established cells must be cautious in their utterances because such utterances are already implicating peaceful Ghanaian Muslims as suspicious culprits in the war on terror and our quest to prevent attacks. Creating solidarity and working relationships is better than creating suspicion, resentment, and unfounded demonization.

We should be allowed to have our voices, as it is our right in a free and democratic society. But we should treat it as a jewel and not some dusty football any Tom, Dick and Harry can just kick around in the town square. And to journalists of our beloved Ghana! You are leaders. And as leaders, you must exercise maturity and cadence. To end with a cliché but one of huge significance, “to whom much is given, much is expected.”

Umar Mohammed
Graduate Teaching Assistant
Texas A & M University

Sunday, 17 January 2016



There was never a day my father would not enquire from me how my day was at school and even now, at work. He would teach me especially mathematics and science (though I had a personal tutor for that). He made studying fun and fascinating such that I always recalled his teaching spectacles even during examinations. 

My mother equally contributed to my academic development by establishing the basics of mathematics through simple addition, subtraction and multiplication exercises with the use of “counters” (crown corks of soft drinks we gathered) plus who would possibly forget about the “times” (multiplication) table?. She taught my brother and me how to combine letters of the English alphabet to form simple words and then gradually to more advanced words. I remember how proud I was when I was able to pronounce “bicycle” on my own without mama’s help. I guess I was about five or six years of age.  She also organized reading and essay writing competitions often between my brother and me. That is how we earned our first bicycles and video game.

Mama made sure that at least I knew how to cook and do laundry. I must say that laundry was my specialty at a very young age. I was even enrolled into music school at eight years old. I used to play soccer and do some athletics in basic and high schools respectively. Though I have never had a keen interest in politics, I have had some experience in leadership. 

I cast my mind back at all these and thank God for the opportunities I have had. With these I am equally thankful for all my teachers, friends and even the people who came into and left my life at some point. I, however, have an incessant deafening inner cry in the silence of my thoughts of how much opportunities most girls in our society may not have had thrown their way for their holistic development. It gets worse when I see these street porters (popularly known as “kayayos) who do what they do with all resilience in the bid to make ends meet. I look especially at the younger ones and see great potentials in every single one of them. Then I ask myself if the society or individuals perceive what I see in them and if they do, have they considered ways of helping to make them better?

 I am particularly concerned about the development of girls from all walks of life i.e their developmental journey and their future destinations. Thoughts and visions do not have any meaning if the steps are not taken, one at a time, to make them a reality. I am certain that a lot of them have visions in life but the means to make them real. My parents have been a great source of motivation to me and like them various means can be adopted in helping the less privileged ones develop. Holistic development comes in various forms, from the acquisition of domestic skills to academic attainment. It definitely involves maximizing their potentials for the best. If for instance, one perceives lack of courtesy in some girls or group of younger ones, steps can be taken to teach them what courtesy is; so can they be encouraged to legitimately pursue their passions in life through good guidance. It all starts from somewhere. Let us not depend on government. Individuals could come together to tackle such issues at the community level then probably to the district and then gradually to the national levels. I believe in helping others in our own ways, we will contribute immensely to the betterment of the human resource and the development of Ghana as a nation. It lies in our hands. Let us therefore help them aboard with what we have for the sake of the future.

Audrey Anim-Ankumah
Biomedical Scientist


“Developing countries in Africa have been more concerned with bridging the gaps of inequality with the developed countries, whiles the developed countries have been more concerned with increasing the gaps of inequality with the developing countries.”

Development is a term which came into vogue after World War II when development economists attempted to design appropriate development models for developing countries to catch up with the developed world. The word development is however very difficult to define. Over the years, there has been long debate over the exact definition of the concept development. Different scholars have viewed development from different perspectives. Some of these perspectives have been examined below with analysis based Michael P. Todaro and Stephen C. Smith book on Economic Development, ninth edition.

Dudley Seers used poverty, unemployment and inequality as indicators for measuring development instead of economic indicators. Dudley Seers posed the basic question about the meaning of development succinctly when he asserted, “the questions to ask about a country’s development are therefore: What has been happening to poverty? What has been happening to unemployment? What has been happening to inequality?  If all three of these have declined from high levels, then beyond doubt this has been the period of development for the country. If one or two of these problems have been growing worse especially if all three have, it would be strange to call the result  ‘development’ even if per capita income doubled”(Seers, 1969:3 cited in Conyers and Hills, 1984: 29-30). Development must therefore be conceived of as a multidimensional process involving major changes in social structures, popular attitudes and national institution as well as the acceleration of economic growth, the reduction of inequality and eradication of poverty.

Amertya Sen’s “Capabilities” Approach, Sen argues that the “capability to function” is what really matters as a poor or nonpoor person. As Sen put it “Economic growth cannot be sensibly treated as an end in itself. Development has to be more concerned with enhancing the lives we lead and the freedom we enjoy. Functioning that is what a person does (can do) with the commodities of a given characteristics that they come to possess or control. The concept of functioning reflects the various things a person may value doing or being. Sen define capabilities, as “the freedom that a person has in terms of the choice of functioning, given his personal features and his command over commodities”.

The final perspectives worthy of mentioning is the Post-Modernism Idea of Development, they argue that the concept of development is not practical and just a body of ideas and theories used by the Western world to dominant the third world countries.  They entreat Third World countries to craft their own conceptual understanding of development that best address their needs.

For the purpose of digesting the issue of developing countries in Africa having been more concerned with bridging the gaps of inequality with the developed countries, while the developed countries have been more concerned with increasing the gaps of inequality with the developing countries, I have decided to craft my understanding for development which is development been a multidimensional process which involve using the means of development (i.e. Natural resources, Institutions and Human actors) to address the goals of development (i.e. either to reduce or to create socio-economic and political inequality of well-being within or across societies) in addition to the cultural and political requirement for effecting rapid structural and institutional transformations of entire societies in a manner that will most efficiently bring the fruits of economic progress to the broadest segments of their populations.
According to the Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner’s ENGLISH DICTIONARY, Inequality is the difference in social status, wealth, or opportunity between people or groups.  Situating the meaning of inequality into the context of the issue under discussion, inequality can be explain as the difference in social, economic, political advancement and infrastructure coupled with institutional progress among countries.

Developing countries are deemed to have low level of per capita income, low industrialization, low literacy rate, poor living standard and weak institutions coupled with inadequate technological infrastructure. Developing countries have been bedeviled with Weak institutions, Dependence on and vulnerability to foreign exploitation, High illiteracy rate, High levels of unemployment, Prevalence of endemic diseases, Limited technological capacity, High infant mortality rate, Malnutrition, Poor sanitation, Unequal distribution of income etc.

Examination of the characteristics of developing countries will better explain the reason why developing countries in Africa have been more concern with the bridging the gaps of inequality with the developed countries. A point worth noting is that the developed countries have already passed through this stage and characteristics that the developing countries are currently in. In examining the characteristics of developing countries, reference is made to Michael P. Todaro and Stephen C. Smith book on Economic Development, chapter two.

The first point worth mentioning is low levels of living, characterized by low incomes, inequality, poor health and inadequate education. In developing countries, the levels of living tend to be very low for the vast majority of people. These low levels of living are manifested quantitatively and qualitatively in the form of low life and work expectancies, high infant mortality rate and in many cases a general sense of malaise and hopelessness.
Secondly, dependence and vulnerability in international relations, for many developing countries a significant factor contributing to the persistence of low levels of living, rising unemployment, and growing income inequality is the highly unequal distribution of economic and political power between rich and poor nations. These unequal strength are manifested not only in the dominant power of rich nation to control the pattern of international trade and agreements regulating it but also in their ability often to dictate the terms whereby technology, foreign aid, and private capital are transferred to developing countries.

Furthermore, substantial dependence on agricultural production and primary-product exports, the vast majority of people in developing nations live and work in the rural areas. The basic reason for the concentration of people and production in agricultural and other primary production activities in developing countries is the simple fact that at low income levels, the first priorities of any person are food, clothing and shelter. Agricultural productivity is low not only because of the large numbers of people in relation to available land but also because developing countries agriculture is often characterized by primitive technologies, poor organization and limited physical and human inputs. Technological backwardness persists because developing country agriculture is predominantly noncommercial peasant farming.

The final characteristic of developing countries to be digested is the prevalence of imperfect market and limited information. It is worth noting that the presumed benefits of market economics and market- friendly policies depend heavily on the existence of institutional, cultural and legal prerequisites that most of us in industrial societies take for granted. In many developing countries, these legal and institutional frameworks are either absent or extremely weak. These situations do not allow for the enforcement of contracts and validation of property rights, a stable and trustworthy currency, an infrastructure of roads and utilities that result in low cost of transport and communication. Moreover, information is limited and costly to obtain, thereby often causing goods, finances, and resources to be misallocated.

Examining the characteristics of the developing countries is clearly obvious that developing nations needed to bridge this vast gap of inequality comparing with the developed countries. Any development policies must be geared towards mitigating this extreme level socio-economic and political couple with institutional inequalities. Educational infrastructures, economical stability, political independence and strong institutional framework are the key areas that the developing countries must endeavor to bridge the gap that have been created internally by poor institutional framework and externally by the developed countries. Since developing countries are in a gradual process of developing, these inequalities must necessarily be bridge for them to achieve their development targets of economic stability, technological infrastructure, political independent and strong institutional framework.

Now a cursory look at the developed countries and how they are more concerned with creating inequalities with the developing countries, according to Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations, “A developed country is one that allows its citizens to enjoy a free and healthy life in a safe environment.” Developed countries are mostly characterized by high level of industrialization, high literacy rate, and lower level of unemployment, better sanitation, accessible medical services, democratic government, a stable currency and well functioning institutions.

In my candid opinion, the developed nations have over the decades thrown out policies and program that have created inequalities with developing countries. It must be noted that the developed countries have internally bridge the gap of inequalities by establishing strong institution, stable economic, adequate educational and medical infrastructures coupled with advanced technological development.
Free trade policy of developed countries with developing nation has created inequalities that sector. The developed countries benefit from this policy by their firms dapping cheap and inferior product onto the market of developing countries which adversely affect  the developing countries infant industries by indirectly collapsing them  because consumers preference for cheap goods.

Controlling of trade and prizes of goods and services by the developed countries have not benefited the developing countries in foreign trades but rather increase inequalities of imperfect market and vulnerability of the economics of the developing countries.
In addition to that, even the financial assistances extended to the developing countries by the developed countries are mostly attached with strings and harsh conditions which are detrimental to the quest of developing countries to bridge the gaps of inequalities with the developed countries but beneficial to the effort of developed countries to create inequalities. An illustrative example in that regard is when financial support is given to the developing countries to bridge their infrastructures deficits but with the conditions that all material resources and the construction firm to do the project must necessarily come from the developed country offering the support. This kind of support will rather boost the economy of the developed countries because the financial support they offer will return in their economy coupled with the export gains and the interest that the developing countries will pay on the financial support.

In conclusion, is worth stating that development is an ending process of historical change because of durable inequalities and also the developed countries are already developed and therefore their quest to better their lot will amount to the creation of inequalities with the developing countries. From the angle of the characteristics of developing countries (poor health system, malnutrition, high literacy rate, high infant mortality rates, weak institutions, poor technological infrastructures etc) relative to that of developed countries, developing measure necessarily put in concrete measures to bridge these gaps of socio-economic and political inequalities with the developed countries. On the developed countries more concerned with creating inequalities with developing countries, is clearly obvious that the developed countries are already developed and they want to better their lot therefore policies( free trade and economic partnership agreement, financial support with harsh conditions and strings attached)  pretending to be in the interest of developing countries are thrown to the developing countries which in the long run tend to benefit the developed countries and the inequalities gaps continue to persist.

2. WIKIPEDIA (Differences between Developed and Developing Countries)

Raymond Edem Yao Nuworkpor 

A fellow of THE FUTURE WHATSAPP group

Saturday, 16 January 2016


Am not a journalist and perhaps the closest I have come to being a journalist is my dad teaching communication studies and being friends with Derrick Ekow Sam and Kwakye Afreh Nuamah both of joy fm. This paper will look like an attack on joy fm but it represents my genuine disappointment in the current media landscape of our country. I will ask management of joy fm and other media personnels who will be affected by this paper to treat it as genuine concern expressed by a listener.

News file, the news analysis show by joyfm has been running for probably older than I am. I enjoyed the show from my childhood days even though I didn't understand the discussions that went on. My parents listening to news file Saturday mornings always helped me to buy some free time Saturday mornings since very few things could take their attentions from the radio. This increased my love for the show.

Am a bit old now and I am able to understand the issues I hear on radio. My own love for news file was unflinching which will probably be as a result of my childhood days. News file is indeed the most authoritative news analysis show like they say but the show lacks one thing which is objectivity. That has always been my problem with the show. Even though the show occasionally  dedicate some time to interview professionals on some issues, it has dominantly used politicians as it's panel members thus turning the show into an extended parliament house.

I have tried to contain it even though the practice upsets me, but last Saturday's edition the 9 day of January, 2016 did not only disappoint me but it also broke my heart. I was surprised that a critical issue of security such as whether or not to accept alleged former terrorist detainees from the Guantanomo bay was left to the mercy of Ursula Owusu and Abraham Amaliba to analyse. This is not to downplay their ability to analyse the issue but their political orientation did not allow them to bring out the true substance of the issue.

Like news file every other radio station in Ghana has programs that are dominated by political panellists. It is very sad that the media which is supposed to give out information in the form of objective and experts analysis of issues have become an extended parliament house or political party headoffices. Some media houses are even openly branded as being the official mouth piece of political parties.

Sometimes you hear some people on radio and you wonder why and who gives them the airtime, because some of these guys do not even understand the most basic form of logic and analytical thinking yet media houses allow them pass on their ignorance to do many other people. I just don't understand why we allow ourselves to be ridiculed like that but whatever it is, it is very shameful.

There are some people whom I do not know how they qualify to be called journalists. It actually looks like the only thing journalistic about them is the name of the profession they are abusing and drag into disrepute. I will not say anything about “soli” and stomach journalism because I don't want to venture into issues of speculations.

My thoughts 
I have a strong feeling that our media is failing us woefully. I am very sure that Kweku Baako, Kwesi Pratt and the rest who suffered for media freedom in Ghana are sad about the media developments. It's shocking that at a time that we have more media houses which should call for proper shows due to competition, we rather see the opposite.
This is not to say that we should totally take politicians out of our media setting, but it is very important to consider substance and objectivity before giving politicians the opportunity to use any media platform. We should use experts to analyse issues for the many who are willing to use the media as an information and learning tool to benefit from it. I listened to the BBBs analysis of president Obama's call for America to find a permanent cure for cancer and my heart was at peace. There were four different medical researchers from across the world coming together to analyse the situation.
I think that certain issues should be left to experts to solely talk about and afterwards no politician should be brought in to discuss it. The reason is that the politician has a prejudice so even though they may have the knowledge, the issue will be distorted.
This is not to fully condemned the media as not working at all. Indeed some media houses have done well and served our country well over the years and need commendations. The same joy fm I am talking about today has over the years been one of Ghana's best radio stations producing great journalists who are able to compete on the international setting.
Going forward I would like the media houses to know that we in a democratic environment and things of political party issues will arise but let's not give all our attention to politics. It does not help our country to grow.

Now back to news file. I would like the management of the station to know that like myself, not everyone is interested in hearing people always taken entrenched positions about issues. Some of us genuinely want to use it as a learning tool and thus the need to work on it.

Like I said early news file is a perfect news analysis show but lacks objectivity so kindly work on it.

Samuel Koomson


Globally, more than half of the world’s population is under the age of 30. Global youth unemployment rate has reached its highest peak for decades. It has been estimated that approximately 1.3 billion young people will enter the global labour market during the next decade, but only 300 million are expected to be employed.
To the young person whom a lot has been invested in for years and then become unemployed coupled with pressures from family and friends, peace may not be an important thing. To someone who cannot make ends meet as a result of being underemployed, peace may be a scarce commodity. To the one who also feels that he or she has been denied the enjoyment of certain rights or has been discriminated against in any form, peace may never be a priority. The central issue will be that of survival. How to make use of that skill or knowledge acquired in order to make him or herself relevant. In the absence of that, anything that will make him or her engaged may be the only option.
Therefore we cannot continuously talk about the peace and security of the world without first of all looking at things that are luckily triggers of violence. As they say, the devil finds work for the idle hand.
The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimated that as of 2015, there were 201 million people who were out of work, and by 2019, this will be more than 212 million people. In 2014, it estimated that about 202 million people were unemployed and underemployed. It also estimated that by 2018, the figure is luckily to hit 215 million people. Almost 74 million young people, aged 15-24, were looking for work in 2014 and the youth unemployment rate ‘’is practically three times higher’’ than for their adult counterparts, the ILO found.
It therefore warns that if low wages lead people to consume less, and investment remains subdued, growth rates will suffer. The ILO also warns of rising social unrest as rising inequality undermines trust in government and young people are left frustrated as pay trends fail to match general improvement in educational attainment.
The close interrelationship between social justice, sustainable development, human rights and peace as present in the daily life of the world’s youth cannot be overlooked. High levels of unemployment, social exclusion and growing discontent among the youth of the world are not only acute problems of social development, but may also trigger severe regional and global unrest. It is therefore of great importance that young people are integrated into decision making processes at national, regional and international levels.
It is worth noting that if no hope of a better future is within sight, facilitating sustainable and peaceful social change becomes nearly impossible. Consequently, empowering young people is not simply a matter of equality or justice, but one of global peace and security.
Youth participation in decision making at all levels is the key in achieving peaceful resolutions of difficult situations. Youth-led organizations play significant role in the process of global social change and serve as a major link between youth around the globe. There is therefore the need to secure youth participation in associations and voluntary movements. It is only through this that we can genuinely incorporate youth in peace-building efforts and processes which aim at balancing and easing the quality of life for many.
Peace and human rights are global values which unite young people around the world. It is however important to stress that justice and equality between generations is the first step in acknowledging the role of the youth as a specific, vulnerable group in peaceful processes and all peace building efforts or initiatives.
It is important to reiterate that youth are agents of development, social inclusion, tolerance and peace building. It is equally important to recognize the fact that restrictive conditions to youth involvement in mainstream decision making processes such as deliberate political and social relegation and an overall lack of capacity restrain youth from participating meaningfully in issues of peace and security. Limited social, economic and political opportunities are strong contributing factors that are luckily to drive the youth to become involved in conflicts.
It is therefore important to look at unemployment, underemployment and all forms of exclusion as national, regional and internationally threats to peace and security and collectively put our minds together in order to work towards overcoming them or minimizing their negative effects especially among young people.
In conclusion, it is important to recognize that there is a link between youth unemployment, underemployment and conflict, hence the urgency to address them and as well see youth participation in issues of peace and security as globally cross-cutting especially relevant in conflict and post conflict situations around the world. Initiatives that seek to address the challenges of youth must not just remain on paper. The need to harmonize youth initiatives, nationally, regionally and globally by various stakeholders in order to track the progress of work is eminent. There is also therefore the need for a national, regional and international agreement which must help shift from distraction to interaction, from passive partnership to active and participatory partnership, from seeing youth as sources of conflict to seeing them as resources for peace and development, and ultimately, from asking them to wait to asking them to lead the way.

Authored By:
Prosper Dzitse
Ghana's Youth Ambassador to the Commonwealth
Former NUGS President

Thursday, 14 January 2016


The serious issue that has made the headlines for the past week has been the acceptance of two Guantanamo detainees by the Government of Ghana.

Many are of the view that it is improper for the Government to accept them especially in an election year. Some postulated that perhaps the Government might have accepted some money from the United States Government. There is also one school of thought which thinks that these people are linked to ISIL or Al Qaeda for that matter accepting them is a means of jeopardising the security of the country. The last group thinks that perhaps there should have been wider consultation with parliament, political parties, religious bodies and other stakeholders in the country before making such a decision.

I am tempted to be on the side of the last school of thought but on a second thought, I realized that that would had been a wasted effort because never will there be an agreement on the modus operandi to be used in this case. A lot of time will be used but there may never be an agreement, and maybe the tax payers’ money may be used to feed the ‘stakeholders’. It will again defeat the purpose of having a Government that must act on our behalf and ultimately our interest, nationally and internationally. This is not declaration of war where the President must at all cost consult parliament. We are operating with structures, we have a system in place.

As is well known, Ghana is noted for serving as a home for people who are ‘distressed’ out of conditions beyond their control. I believe that as a country in the comity of Nations, we cannot pretend that issues that affect other people from other countries do not concern us.

I understand how challenging it is for us to accept the detainees from one of the prisons that is noted for harbouring people termed as ‘medium or high risk prisoners’ at this point in history where religious mis-education and extremism has led to loss of precious lives and property but I would also like to remind us that all the people we have helped in the past, all the problems we have helped in solving in the past, there were other countries which could equally help but we did, there were other risks associated with the challenges but we looked over them, fought and became victorious.

We have always led the way when it comes to making sure some form of comfort is provided to others in Africa. We led the fight for independence in Sub Sahara Africa, our support helped in fighting against apartheid in South Africa, we helped in the fight against Ebola. We are known for our hospitality and christened as the citadel of democracy in Africa. While we were fighting for all the above, we were never immune from other problems, we had our domestic problems ranging from political to economic. But we know very well that in today’s world we are citizens of the comity of nations rather than just that of our country. We continuously support the global fight towards making the world a better place first because we know that a better world means, a better Ghana, we also know that Ghanaians are found almost everywhere in the world, legally or illegally. As a Youth Ambassador, everywhere I have been, I have met Ghanaians. Some have been working in such countries illegally for decades. Some have complained to me how the countries in which they are, are threatening to deport them but cannot do that because of the respect they have for Ghana and Ghanaians.

The most surprisingly group of people in this matter to is the Christian Council and the Catholic Bishops Conference. It is pathetic that our religious organizations which used to be epitome of peace, compassion and love, are gradually becoming like any ordinary organization. If the church thinks that a group of people due to their being seen or perceived as ‘medium or high risk prisoners’ do not deserve love, compassion and mercy, then where do we find solace in times of distress? Assuming without admitting that these people are linked to ISIL or Al Qaeda one do not believe that our religious leaders have any justification, legally or morally to speak the way they did and to continuously defend their stance especially when they were met by the Foreign Affairs Minister to further clarify issues to them in relation to what went into accepting the detainees.

I am afraid our religious organizations are beginning to do the work of civil society organizations. My utmost fear however is that, if care is not taken, they will end up drawing a battle line between the two major religious bodies since there is a religious undertone to the issue. We have always co-existed in peace before the coming of religion and must not do anything to divide us consciously or unconsciously. Good leadership also means knowing what to say at any point in time, when to say it, how to say it and where to say it.

In any case, according to reports, 668 prisoners in totally have been transferred to 56 countries including Britain, Uganda, Cape Verde, Algeria, Pakistan, Morocco, Kuwait, Sudan, France, Russia, United Arab Emirates, Germany, Turkey, Swaziland, Belgium, Libya, Portugal, Australia, Tunisia, Italy, Canada, Egypt among others. Arguably, some of the above mentioned countries have stronger security system than we have, but we also have stronger security system than others. The bottom line is, this is an issue that has assumed international dimension, we should not by any means behave as if we are the most ‘clean’ country or the country with the greatest fear in the world, it will also be out of place to behave as if we are an island. Peace, Security and Justice Issues no matter how small they are deserve the attention of every country.

The whole issue has been blown out of proportion. It is important to make the point that governance is a serious business and the earlier we stop doing partisan-politics with everything the better it will be for us. Governance is a global product born out of civilization. Apart from the fact that it is meant to give citizens the needed voice, it also need leaders who are decisive to lead with tact, wisdom, knowledge, experience and skill. Leaders who will take decisions that are mostly not popular but will go a long way to help in building a better country and a better world. We have always stood with the world in moments like this, we have fought together and won battles before, we have shared in other people and other countries agonies, we have also rejoiced together as comity of nations, this is certainly not the time to renege on our position in the world.

The detainees are already in the country, and those who understand internationally diplomacy will tell you that if it is not practically impossible it will be nearly impossible to take them back. In essence, the only option we have now is to ensure that there is proper security so that even if they will be a threat to our peace and security they do not get the chance to do so. I believe we have what it takes to ensure that we are protected as a country.

We must not by any means spark fear in ourselves or other people which may go a long way to prevent well-meaning citizens from going about their daily duties as expected, for as a Country we know very well that everyone, no matter how they are perceived or known to be deserves some form of compassion.

Prosper Dzitse is Ghana’s Youth Ambassador to the Commonwealth Youth Council and a Global Youth Crusader.