The Founder and Leader of the United Progressive Party (UPP), Mr Kwasi Addai aka Odike, has observed that the political antagonism between the two major political parties in the country, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC), if left unchecked could wreak havoc in the future.
According to him, not a day passes without the politicisation of development issues between the two parties, adding that the manner they went about it tended to create sharp divisions within the country rather than building cohesion and consensus for national development.
Expressing his concern to the Daily Graphic in an interview, Mr Addai, was of the view that it was about time that Ghanaians ditched the two parties and went in for another force that was geared more towards nationalism with a focus on uniting the people for development.
New kind of leadership
Stressing his point further, he said “we need a kind of leadership that will unite the people with a common front to fight poverty but the level of political antagonism and political segregation we are currently witnessing is creating a very sharp division and if care is not taken, it could plunge the country into serious chaos.”
Going into the 2020 polls, he said Ghanaians should give him a try and that all he will do will be to unify the country.
He posited that “meritocracy will be the order of the day as well as pragmatism and honesty will be my hallmark. Give me the chance and let us change the country for the better. Together we can do it. Forget about NPP and NDC. We need a leadership with a vision to unite the people and use our resources to build a resilient and a robust economic front that will push our vision as one people with a common destiny.”
He stressed that at this juncture of the country’s development, it was time “to put our parochial interests aside and take a critical look at the national interest, and that can be done if we change the way we vote.”
It was his position that Ghanaians were yearning for a departure from such an arrangement where power only alternated between the NPP and the NDC.
Excessive executive power
“Listening to the general conversation, people are of the view that the NPP and the NDC have both used the excessive powers of the President to their advantage and that has not inured to the benefit of the country as a whole but rather brought sharp division,” he added.
He was of the position that there was an over-concentration of power in the hands of the executive wing of government, saying that amounted to a sort of military regime.
“I think the whole country is already in a military regime because the 1992 Constitution has plunged the whole country into a military regime because any country that gives too much power to the executive fails to be a democratic country,” he pointed out.
Unemployment and crime
Touching on the recent upsurge in crime and other violent developments in the country, Mr Addai said the youth in the country were agitating for a change and if that change was not forthcoming, they might take the law into their own hands and resort to civil revolt to demand a change.
“This should be a signal to the leadership of the country. Please create more jobs to keep the youth in decent employment. About 47 per cent of the youth are unemployed and it is a recipe for national disaster, insecurity, indiscipline and corruption, he said.
It was his considered opinion that “any democracy that does not reduce the gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’; any democratic nation where poverty is extreme, where unemployment is so widespread is a fake democracy and ours is not an exception. The democracy we are practicing, in its current form, is not helping us.”