Talking Drums

The West African News Magazine


Re: 'Expect Lasting Glory'

Professor Mawuse Dake, the former Secretary of Housing who fell from grace when he was relieved of his job unceremoniously and was later placated with the secretaryship of the National Defence Council (NDC), has continually made outrageous statements that are out of whack with the realities of the country. His recent claim (Talking Drums, 6th February 1984) that "if we are able to UNDERSTAND (my emphasis) the proposals (for recovery?) and go through the difficult times, we can be sure to see the light at the end of the tunnel in a few years," tops it all!

It is disappointing that the retired professor, whose title 'professor' still trails him although he has left academe, has not come up with any original thinking that will breathe fresh air into the revolutionary process. As the major ideologist for the revolution, he has waxed thin the re-hashed marxist rhetoric to the point of nausea.

Now professor, Ghanaians DO understand the proposals. They know that those proposals are responsible for the ever worsening conditions of the people. They understand that the proposals mean a whopping devaluation, a non-pareil in world history, which has been couched in fine epithets: currency harmonisation, currency re-alignment with many tiers of exchange. In fact they need no more exhortations.

And how 'few' will those years be until the light will be seen at the end of the tunnel? In any case, Ghanaians don't merely want to SEE light at the end of the tunnel. They want to GET OUT of the tunnel of repression, hunger, confused policies, and empty rhetoric, and BE in the light of freedom and open government where they can take charge of their lives as they choose.

Professor Dake is very intriguing indeed. As professor of Civil Engineer- ing, a position from which he retired in an East African university (he was senior lecturer of that discipline for several years at the University of Science and Technology), one might have thought that he would come out with some simple design to help clean the squalid environments of our decaying towns and cities, not to mention the yawning potholes and deathtraps on our roads.

But perhaps the professor is a classic case of academic obsolescence. No wonder the only seminal policy decision he was able to make during his brief sojourn at the Housing Ministry was to ban the use of glass louvres for home construction. Just imagine how the course of the revolution might have substitute!

Professor, my generation is fed up with bankrupt preachers who have not shown either by their research or personal achievement that they have something concrete to offer embattled Ghana. We Ghanaians are mad as hell and can't take it anymore. If the professor has nothing to offer us through his profession for which he was trained, he should leave Ghanaians alone to brood over their misery. We have heard enough of empty talk and exhortations. Enough is enough!

Kwaku Kpatakpa Gyampo
Los Angeles, Ca. 90017

Does Dikko know what Jihad means?

IT WAS REALLY surprising when I heard Umaru Dikko, Nigeria's former Minister, saying he's getting set to wage a holy war, (Jihad) against Buhari's regime. Since then I really wonder whether Dikko really knows what Jihad means.

I was born in a muslim family and I have some knowledge of the Holy Quran and the reason behind the Jihads. Prophet Muhammed (PBOH) fought the Jihad not on the basis of deceit, but on the basis of truth. He fought against feudalism, anarchy and oppression, and God was on his side. The great Nigerian Jihadist Uthman Dan-Fodio did the same and he was successful.

I wonder on what basis Dikko wants to wage his own Jihad. The last civilian administration of which he was a member was found guilty of corruption, injustice, and oppression of which the jihad he was talking about lays its emphasis to eradicate.

The aforementioned jihadist was successful because they laid their own foundation on equal rights, freedom from oppressionist and feudalist controls. I am very optimistic if Dikko intends to wage any jihad against Buhari's government which has come as a messiah to set the masses free from unwanted government, I bet, Allah will never be on his side.

Adekunle Adesina Odunmorgy

All things being equal

I could not resist a quiet chuckle on reading Peoples' Daily Graphic editorial titled as above in 'What the Papers Say' column of the Talking Drums.

In an obvious counterblast to the remarks of a participant who, in the debate on the 1984 Budget Estimates held at the Parliament House recently, obviously frustrated by the fumblings and the groppling of the government of the PNDC, had suggested that Ghanaians go back to Europe and learn "because that is the only way for the country to become the land of flowing milk and honey," the said editorial went into apoplectic rage and even questioned why a man like that should be an executive member of the OSU Peoples Defence Committee (PDC).

This is the type of intolerance of opposing views that has resulted in a paucity of ideas in the country's development. Hypocrisy is now a cherished attitude and people, for fear of being attacked, only say things that would please the authorities.

We are still learning from each other and that is what international inter relationship is all about. Ghana's experience with colonialism, some may argue has done us more harm than good but I say that it is myopic for us to stick our heads in the sand because it is what we do with the experience and education that we acquire through our contact with Europe and still continue to get that determine the direction of our development.

James Prah, Putney, London

talking drums 1984-02-27 ghana's aimless revolution - pro buhari demonstration in London