On My Humble Mind: President Mahama Vindicates Akufo Addo's Visionary Leadership Qualities

Akufo Addo's flagship programme to Ghanaians during the last two general elections of 2008 and 2012 was the implementation of a free Senior High School policy. This was to ensure that the financial burden required to educate the Ghanaian child was removed from parents with government bearing the cost of education from pre -school through to SHS. With his commitment to offering the people of Ghana, the best policy on education, Akufo Addo presented a comprehensive and an elaborate programme which was to be implemented within his first term as president. Akufo Addo acknowledges that an educated population is required to transform and improve the lives of the people of Ghana and that the free SHS was the best intervention needed to achieve our objectives as a nation. He continuously inspire trust and visionary leadership. While his political adversaries did all they could to discredit the free SHS policy, today President Mahama has made a confession and one of the most important statement on educational policy for the Ghanaian child. I am grateful that the vast majority of Ghanaian students who would have dropped out of school after their Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) probably at age 15, would now have the opportunity to go to SHS. My concern however is in the genuineness of the president's statement. I have an inclination that President Mahama is just doing what he knows best, deception. Considering the ailing economic situation in Ghana, high cost of living, escalating interest and exchange rates, President Mahama has to pull a fast one with an implementation of free SHS, to take some pressure away. Despondency is staring at most Ghanaians, high cost of electricity, water and other basic necessities beyond the reach of most Ghanaians. Poor sanitation and filth is virtually swallowing our environment and corruption is at an epoch levels under his watch, throwing out the idea of "implementation" of a free SHS policy would provide him with a caveat, as attention would be shifted towards discussing the issue. I am not so sure to trust Mr. President's commitment to the implementation of the most important policy for education in 2015 as he stated in this year's state of the nation address in parliament. Trust is confidence born of two dimensions: character and competence. Character includes our integrity, motive, and intent with the people. President Mahama has not exhibited any traces of these since he assumed office as a president of Ghana. The competency levels with which our country is being governed under president Mahama lack many vital capabilities, skills, result orientation and track record of fulfilling promises. Many of his promises are yet to be redeemed. This one too would only go to add to a repertoire of unfulfilled promises as the president is quick to make promises though he does not intend to fulfill. Deception has been his stock in trade. The president virtually ridiculed Akufo Addo's programme in the run up to the 2012 election and stated that a free SHS policy was not feasible. So vociferous was President Mahama against the free SHS that some Ghanaians had an impression of the impossibility and illusion of the programme. Today, President John Dramani Mahama claims his government is going to implement a free SHS policy beginning 2015, in accordance with the dictates of the 1992 constitution. The free SHS vision bearer is Akufo Addo. He is not discouraged nor has his vision to see Ghana transformed through a well educated and well trained Ghanaian youth become a reality ever been deminished. He is poised as ever before to ensure that quality education become truly free up to at least the SHS level. President Mahama's state of the nation address has once again proven the visionary leadership qualities of Akufo Addo. The 2016 election provides another opportunity for Ghanaians to vote a humble man with a great vision to develop Ghana. BY: FRED KWAKU AMANKWAH - SARFO (National Vice Chairperson Aspirant, N.P.P) (0244255525 / 0544331324)