You have sprung quite a number of useless surprises on us lately and I feel obliged to write and plead with you to stop wasting your time and ours. I hear that you have a lot more up your sleeves. Please keep them there. What we’ve seen so far have impressed few people outside the umbrella family and impressing a few partisan citizens is not what a president should be wasting his time on.
You started dishing out your surprises by visiting the Psychiatric Hospital in Accra. Your choice of that place as the point to start springing surprises on public sector workers struck me as quite strange. Hopefully, the problems of this country are not driving you so mad that you chose to visit the Psychiatric Hospital to have a special place for you just in case you can’t take it anymore.
Two weeks after you went to that hospital, I am hearing that you didn’t even visit the wards and that you just visited the admin block and left. For your information nothing has changed and my ‘mental’ friends there are still counting on your promise to ensure that they are adequately and professionally catered for. I’ve warned that not to expect too much. Otherwise, they’d be sorely disappointed.
But in my heart of hearts, Mr. President, I’d rather that you disappoint me instead. Prove me wrong, because I’ve heard so many people call me “mad” over the past few years that I feel a time would soon come when I’d have to spend about a year of my life in a psychiatric facility.
After the mental hospital, Mr. President, you went to the finance ministry and the revenue agencies, where you blew a lot of hot air at CEPS, speaking about old issues as if they had just come up. By the way, the quick trial of the CEPS guys who were caught on Anas’ camera is really an ace. If only you had dealt with Muntaka the same way, we’d have seized Kufuor’s medals of shame and moulded them into a monument of anti-corruption glory for you.
You’ve also been to the Tema Harbour, where we hear people started running running helter-skelter when they have you had ‘dropped’. Few listened to you but most of them didn’t get the point – of your visit and of your message.
I hear, from your spin doctors, that your surprise visits are meant to encourage people to work harder and with a greater sense of purpose. Mr. President, trust me, no such thing will happen with a mere presidential visit. That’s why I insist that these surprise visits are unnecessary – a complete waste of your time and ours. If the Chief Executive of the Tema Port cannot keep his staff working as professionally as they should to earn their keep, I don’t see what difference a presidential visit can make. Sack the guy. If the commissioner of CEPS will look on unconcerned as his officers allow smugglers to have their way, why are you entertaining him? Give him the boot. Keep sacking underperforming people until you get people who would perform to your expectation – and ours. Surprise visits won’t do.
But then, just when that message – about the needlessness of the surprise visits – was sinking in, you ‘surprise’ us again by jumping on a bus. Your NDC papers have hailed that bus ride was a “historic” testimony to your legendary humility. Maybe it was. But what’s the use of a historic presidential ride on an air-conditioned bus in the company of his friends? What makes that bus ride even more preposterous is that after taking the bus to the retreat with your ministers, we are hearing that you drove in your luxury sedan back to the Castle. So what was the point again? I don’t get it.
I don’t know why suddenly, you feel like springing surprises on us, Mr. President. Is it because you are bored? Do you have too much time on your hands? Or you are just so overwhelmed that you’ve decided that you could as well have all the fun you can before Ghanaians come to the realisation that you are not leading us anywhere. Sometimes, that’s how I feel, you know. Many other Ghanaians feel the same and the sooner you took steps to change their minds the better – for you, your party and our country.
How do you do that?
Well, I think you can start off by springing some surprises we actually need on us.
For example, we’d be very pleasantly surprised if we woke up tomorrow to the news that ‘electricity comes and goes’ (ECG) is a thing of the past. Just last week, I had to do ‘aworshia’ because they took out my power without any notice. I have friends who were deprived of electricity for 72 hours or more. We are told it’s not a crisis, but you go around town, Mr. President, and you hear a lot of noise from electricity generators. There is no electricity and yet we are told it’s not a crisis. Whatever the case is, Mr. President, ending the power outages will be a welcome surprise.
Mr. President, how about going to stay in Bawku or Dagbon for one month? Tell yourself that you are going to spend about 30 days up north and keep talking with the warring factions in Bawku and Dagbon, knocking some sense into their skulls and bringing them to the realisation that war helps no one but hurts us all. It’s easy for you to sit in Accra and call for peace. But when they see you living with them (in a hut) they’d realise that you mean business and that you are not merely spewing platitudes when you say “I care for you”.
However, Mr. President, if electricity supply or conflict resolution is not your calabash of palm wine, my final suggestion should strike a chord in your heart. Most of us will be pleasantly surprised to see you in a KVIP queue one of these days. Try it. It’s an experience you would never forget. Hundreds of thousands of Ghanaians go through the indignity of queuing to, pardon my language, shit everyday in smelly public toilets we call KVIPs. The stench from the KVIP could make you forget your two middle names.
Joining a KVIP queue, Mr. President, will put you in touch with a very poignant Ghanaian reality and it will show the people that you are truly ‘down with the clique’. Whiles there you can even win some of the floating voters in the queue. If you are unsure about which of the KVIPs to visit, just ask General Mosquito. He can point you in the direction of one of the KVIPs your NDC hoodlums have seized.
Waiting to be impressed,