Prime News Ghana

Why I'm not voting for Mahama and you shouldn't

By Kwadwo Afari
President John Dramani Mahama
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I won’t be voting for John Mahama, the current President and still candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in November.


Here’s why:

Under President Mahama wholesale immorality has blossomed in our nation and the decline is so deep that now we cannot even agree on what is truth anymore. Does this sound like the path to a ‘better Ghana’ in the minds of anyone whose brain has not yet been frozen by Godless state intervention and the unbridled pursuit of all that is perverse?

Our ancestors did not die simply for the right to vote. They were slain fighting for the right to economic autonomy; they were beaten because they fought against inequities and inequality. Voting was merely the conduit through which they thought success would be attained. It was supposed to provide access—access to life, freedom, liberty and pursuit of happiness that textbooks and fairy tales tell us about. Yet here we are, being told that to vote on principle, to vote for individual freedom, to vote for the property rights is endangering this nation, and our “second-hand” socialist friends call an economy bogged in debt as progress with a straight face.

John Mahama is “a red diaper baby” raised from birth by a family who perennially exhibits what can be called anti-market bias while paying lip service to Nkrumah’s socialism. His actions are entirely determined by Nkrumah’s theology to which he has devoted his life, and his failures demonstrate its failures. Many people living at the lower economic levels in Ghana today have mobile-phones, computers, and flat-screen televisions – but their lives are in a chaotic downward spiral, undeterred by a culture of responsibility and self-discipline that cannot be created simply by government spending programs. Poverty in 2016 has put people into a life that has no decency or dignity. That was not the case in 1957.

John Mahama is a hypocrite personified. He has made it clear even on his current tour of the country that he considers truth telling and his political opponents to be enemies. If elected, he has also made it clear she’ll continue a dangerous policy of brinksmanship, pushing for the hegemony of his NDC party on the affairs of this country. The stated hegemonic goal is to ultimately destabilize opposition political parties so that these parties fragment into smaller and weaker parties. This is a mad recipe for tyranny, and Mahama, as the president is simply out there to grasp power for its sake.

President and still candidate Mahama on his best of days remains a serious menace to the unity and economic development of this nation. His “mental lying” and current policies have polarized this nation. Inequality persists and is getting worse, and the poor are falling further behind and having a harder time achieving a better middle-class life.

President Mahama has long since realized that people who are poor and dependent on the government will vote for him, even if it is confused socialist policies that created the poverty and dependency in the first place. That’s why most poor constituencies in Ghana are controlled lock, stock, and barrel by the NDC’s flawed socialist thought. Unfortunately, so many destitute Ghanaians have yet to realize that most government policies don’t fight poverty; they maintain it.

Indeed, Mahama and his NDC socialists have a lot of perverse incentives to keep as many of us poor as possible. Since becoming president, he has persistently done everything to kill production in a vibrant private sector-led economy. The best social program is a vibrant economy and a ‘productive’ job for anyone who’s willing to work.” Yet, Mahama has worked incessantly to make it harder for innovative Ghanaians to create jobs.

The binding constraint to job creation under Mahama is the lack of a business climate that fosters the expansion of productive firms. Policies such as regulatory barriers on firm entry and increasing of the minimum wage, higher taxes and a weakening of the financial sector by a president willing to borrow the private sector out from the market, all undermine competitive pressures and hamper the efficient allocation of resources. As a result, new and existing small or medium sized enterprises are ill-equipped to address unemployment because these firms rarely grow. Job creation in Ghana functions like a nursery shielded from the sun and water – no matter how many policy seeds are planted there will be few blossoms unless government created barriers are removed.

The tax rate continues to grow and become more complicated. The President can write executive orders to shape various policies with a parliament that does little to combat him. Cranes and buildings rise all over the country as more and more newly created millionaires and billionaires go to bed with politicians and those closer to power.

If the rule is, judge a man by who his friends are, let’s look at Mahama’s friends. So how about this rogue’s gallery: Ibrahim Mahama, his brother and one of the greatest beneficiaries of major government funded contracts; Abosi Woyome, paid a stunning fifty-four million Ghana cedis of tax payers money allegedly for no work done; Dzifa Attivor, a minister who used her position to sole source a fraudulent contract to the tune of 3.6 million cedis. And then again, Mr. Mahama is said to be deep in the pocket of crooked party officials, as most critics have repeatedly noted on the political circuit. What earthly good can come out of a president who is also alleged to be in the pocket of the oil and gas industries, and of other multinationals.

With friends, or really bosses, like these, the best we could hope for from this president is perhaps marginally better enforcement of laws against political opponents and discrimination or unequal treatment in the allocation of jobs to opponents. We won’t even see reform of the police, because Mahama is not big on law and order, despite her feigned respect for discipline and law and order, the real John Mahama sees critics as what he has called “criminals” who have to be “crushed”.

I am not voting for someone whose associates and relatives are linked to all kinds of shady deals. It’s important to have principles in life, and I’m never voting for anyone who rarely tells the truth. Therefore, I am never “falling in line,” or pledging allegiance to Mahama or the NDC. I am a Ghanaian first, before any party loyalty, and I am voting my conscience. You vote your conscience, and don’t forget to ask why John Mahama is using state funds to run his presidential and parliamentary campaigns.

How do you feel when someone lies to you?

It probably depends on who is doing the lying. A stranger’s fabrications may not upset you, but dishonesty from a friend or lover can end a relationship. The more you feel the liar is supposed to be “on your side,” the more his or her deceptions feel like betrayal — unless, it turns out, the lies come from a politician you support.

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS), on Wednesday April 13 announced that inflation for March hit 19.2 per cent, up from 18.5 in February. This figure represents the greatest value for inflation since August 2009, due mainly to a rise in the cost of transportation. Prices of transport has jumped from 30.4 per cent to nearly 50 per cent, in addition, clothing and food has gone up by 26.4 per cent to 30 per cent for the same period. Third party insurance has gone up by three hundred per cent. Above all the general economic indicators point to more hardships going forward. The people on the street are complaining and agitating for more reforms all to no avail.

Meanwhile, Mr. Mahama denies these facts. In numerous interviews on radio as part of his ‘Accounting to the People Tour’, Mr. Mahama insists that inflation is far below the known facts. He claims his administration will bring inflation down to 5.3 per cent, then interest rates will gradually follow, and, then the jobs. And for jobs, he is going to rely on galamsey?

As part of his recent campaign tour, John Mahama is focusing simply on showing the ‘little shiny things’ he calls infrastructure and, which according to him, the development he has brought to his faithful servants. The President, while beating his chest and tickling himself, on the tour, is asking impoverished Ghanaians to return him to power to continue the ‘good work’ he has done.

The President, who is seeking re-election, has conveniently forgotten to mention the cost, both human and deeper deficits, not to talk about the inflated costs of the projects, to the people of this country. First, the economy is not growing because infrastructure spending is a particularly bad vehicle for stimulus. Second, while no one disputes the value of good infrastructure, under his watch public work projects have typically suffer from massive cost overruns, waste, fraud, and abuse; and the beneficiaries of the massive cost overruns are Mahama and his cronies who have apparently accumulated vast fortunes, and in a political party that self-consciously preach equality, even socialism.

If politicians keep lying and voters keep shrugging it off, isn’t that an indictment of democracy? Aren’t voters supposed to act as a check on the people in power? In theory, an election is supposed to be more than a popularity contest. Candidates are supposed to represent an approach to policy making, which is in turn supposed to reflect both facts and a theory of cause and effect. What Mahama has given us so far instead is a formalised tribalism, us versus them, facts be damned.

Getting issues like deficit financing and job creation terribly wrong takes no work and has the immediate payoff for an evil politician to feel like he is on the side of angels. The hard truth is bothering to understand supply and demand offers no practical reward to us as voters after the elections.

The lies we care the least to uncover are precisely those for which destroy a country. That describes almost anything we may ever be asked to vote on. Knowing the truth directly matters to the decisions we make every day — the truth about our jobs, our homes, our families and loved ones — the relative benefits of knowing the truth are far greater, and we should penalise the liars in our lives.

The truth should win out, but it’s a lot less likely in this election with all the deceitful propaganda. I am tired of the failures and betrayals of John Mahama. I am sick of a politician who promises much and deliver very little. I am tired of voting for change and being fed with the same rhetoric and double-speak and that is why I am not voting for John Mahama in this year’s elections, and you shouldn’t too!