The Ghana Beyond Aid agenda by government has within the past few days been under the spotlight owing to an alleged comment by the Netherlands Ambassador to Ghana, Ron Strikker.
We can only deduce from the reported comment that he is equally frustrated as every Ghanaian about the level of corruption in the country.
The Ghanaian Times shares similar concerns about corruption in the public sector, in Ghana, and it is our resolve to help government, state agencies and institutions in clamping down on the canker.
That notwithstanding, the ideals of the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda, must not be distorted but rather pursued in its current format which focuses on economic independence and progression as it had been defined by President Nana Akufo-Addo on numerous platforms.
It is for this reason that we find the address on Monday, by the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Mike Aaron Oquaye, as timely. He did not only reiterate the importance of the agenda but said it was time Ghana and Africa at large found ways to mobilise enough resources to be able to determine its own developmental path and not being overly reliant on foreign taxpayers to pursue growth.
He explained that the agenda was a call for a paradigm shift for a partnership which would allow promotion and protection for new industries from the dumping of cheap products from other developed nations as dictated by current World Trade Organisation arrangements.
Prof. Oquaye indicated that, the president wanted a new partnership and not dependency and donor support of budget deficit from time to time.
“The present World Economic Order makes Africans as continuing drawers of water and hewers of wood. We produce raw materials such as gold, diamond, bauxite, cocoa, fruits, timber and vegetables without corresponding end-product benefit,” he added.
The Ghana Beyond Aid, the Speaker said, was coterminous with the country against corruption.
He mentioned that, currently, the Law on Public Prosecutor, the Right to Information and others, were to ensure punitive sanctions were imposed against corrupt officials.
The Ghanaian Times agrees that corruption is a threat to achieving a Ghana Beyond Aid. In this regard, a well-coordinated effort from all, including individuals, government and state agencies are required in tackling the menace of corruption.
However, we believe that the ideals of Ghana Beyond Aid should be pursued as it is while corruption is fought simultaneously on all fronts.
There are institutions mandated to tackle corruption. We are hopeful that we can succeed when all of them are adequately resourced to investigate and prosecute corruption and corruption related activities.
A Ghana Beyond Aid is a dream and we must collectively pursue it to make it a reality.