The following piece is by Adeola Aderrounmu –and I would like to take this opportunity to thank him on behalf of all Ghanaians –everywhere. For so long there has been this unexplainable thing, an unspoken maybe competitive rival between uneducated Ghanaians and Nigerians –and I truly feel that this piece goes some way to explaining this unspoken thing.
Certainly we Ghanaians are not perfect or exempt from xenophobia but I have experienced what I call, ‘a certain kind of jealousy’ and some unexplained hatred from certain Nigerians! Not always blatant, -comments like –ooh you are too beautiful to be Ghanaian –you must be Nigerian, but you are not very dark –because all Ghanaians are dark, and so forth and so forth has permeated unwanted dialogue between myself and various uneducated Nigerians over the years and when I have pointed out that said comments are racist and inflammatory, -they just don’t get it! I don’t know where it comes from! Plus, I’m well aware that some Ghanaians also have issues with Nigerians –but I truly believe its jealousy and its sad. The truth is –a countries true worth is in its people -and this being the case, -Nigeria should be leaps and bounds ahead of all African countries but its not! And I don’t know if this is the root cause of that animosity towards us Ghanaians!
–A relatively small nation (apparently we are a nation of 23 million) -there really shouldn’t be any competition between our two nations -we are not the same! We are so not perfect but for some reason we seem to get on tribally –throughout Ghana, have some what of a good reputation, are enjoying relative peace – praise be to God Amen, and are truly working on moving forward without much money or real help from our government! I don’t know, maybe this blatant but unspoken rivalry will always be there, -even though I don’t know any Ghanaians who are in competition with any Nigerians! We Ghanaians must not read the following piece and think that we/things are Ok –because they are not. We have a very long road ahead of us but I’m optimistic and believe that –with Gods help we will make it –and so will Nigeria and the whole of African (the last shall always be first) –Amen!
By Adeola Aderrounmu
Title: Ghana As The Rising Giant Of Africa
GDP has been reviewed upward (USD 31.5) representing 75% increase.
What is interesting is that the new figure reflected the contributions of both the service and agricultural sectors.
The Ghanaian government is looking into other areas of her economy where changes and development can be made.
Ghana recently started extracting oil. Ghana is preparing for a future full of hopes and abundant blessings. Three generations from now, the children of Ghana will be living the dreams of their fathers and mothers. What a beautiful people and country!
This means that Ghana is probably the real and true giant of Africa.
Democracy is working in Ghana. In Ghana there is a sense of collective nationalism and citizen responsibility. Ghanaians are building Ghana and making it not only the envy of West Africa but the continent as a whole.
In the 1980s the Nigerian Government chased the Ghanaian community out of Nigeria. The infamous “Ghana Must Go” was xenophobia of the highest order in which Nigerians falsely ascribed their economic misfortunes and rising unemployment rate to the presence of Ghanaians in Nigeria. It was a detestable political move.
As a people Nigerians have no shame at all. They have refused to ask their governments to provide the basic infrastructure and basic amenities needed to live/ lead a decent life.
Today just 2 decades after Ghanaians left Nigeria; Nigerians are now the ones hustling in Ghana. For several reasons majority of Nigerians have chosen Ghana as their favourite spot in Africa. Others prefer the so called SA.
There are thousands of Nigerian students in Ghanaian Universities not for exchange reasons but because the useless successive, corrupt governments in Nigeria have done almost nothing to improve education. Many Nigerian politicians send their children to school in Europe and America. Ghana has also been added to the fanciful list of options. They destroyed the system in Nigeria and send their children and families abroad to school.
Nigerians have also chosen Ghana as the hotspot for honeymoon. Several other Nigerians visit Ghana as part of their annual holidays. Nigerians are among the largest number of tourists in Ghana. Ghana’s economy is growing from different angles. We chased them out of Nigeria and now we are going to their country to admire them. What a failed country, Nigeria!
Nigerians should thank Ghana and Ghanaians for not being hostile. Ghanaians are not xenophobic like Nigerians. They welcome us while not even referring to how we humiliated them out of Nigeria in 1983. Ghanaians have a forgiving spirit which the typical Nigerians lacks. The racism/tribalism Nigerians faced in Nigeria is worse than what they face in Europe and America. This is probably why some Nigerians living in Europe and America also find it more convenient to return to Ghana for holidays as well.
The tax or demands they put forward to our businesses and activities in Ghana is just part of the ways they are checking our excesses on their soil. We have only ourselves to blame.
Still, Nigerian businesspersons are finding Ghana a more comfortable environment to do businesses. Electricity and other infrastructure are much better in Ghana. But not all Nigerians are doing clean businesses in Ghana. I have read and seen images of Nigerian fraudsters (419 guys) arrested in Ghana. These shameless and desperate dudes had the audacity to forge letter-heads of the central bank of a foreign country!
There is a near complete absence of electricity in Nigeria. The monies budgeted for electricity in Nigeria was stolen by all the government officials in Nigeria and individuals like Obasanjo and Abdulsalami are involved. They awarded themselves contract, for electricity even though they knew they have no idea what electricity is or how it is produced, managed and distributed. But they are free men and above the law. Nigeria is ruled by crooks and thieves and so no real progress is seen nationally in the areas of infrastructure and basic amenities.
It is only in Nigeria that contracts for roads maintenance and repair are given to traditional rulers! In fact it doesn’t matter who gets the contract for Benin-Ore Road for example, the point is that the road is never repaired. Everyone who gets the contract just pocketed the money. Nigerians are dying in vain and hoping in extreme vain as all.
Ghana has her difficulties and like the rest of Africa remains a dumping ground for dangerous electronic items. There are potential dangers because the poor and the desperate are exposed to the harmful components in these electronic wastes. But the government of Ghana is responsible and well aware of the problems. There is a plan and a system that is working towards genuine eradication of poverty in Ghana.
In Nigeria the country is in the hands of gangsters largely aided by an irresponsible followership. In Nigeria the people do not understand the meaning of failure and they do not know what the essence of life is all about, therefore a corrupt party can produce any kind of candidate and still win a majority votes in elections that are usually rigged or manipulated.
The sense of nationalism and collective responsibility is reflected in all aspects of the Ghanaian life. The most obvious is in the area of sports. Ghana is now the most famous sporting nation in Africa courtesy of her exploits in football in South Africa in 2010.
Generally Ghanaians have shown that where there is a will, there is a way. Ghana has shown Africa that democracy can work and that there are dividends of democracy. In Ghana a few people are not looting to the detriment of the population like the way the PDP is championing looting in Nigeria. There is accountability and probity in the government of Ghana.
Ghanaians that have been abroad have been able to help transform Ghana right from the community level to the federal level. They have introduced some systems in Ghana that are adopted from the Swedish communal system. It is working and progress is being achieved. Many Nigerians abroad are not suggesting how Nigeria can be improved; they are collecting bribes and stolen monies to support useless political parties and candidates.
When some of us make suggestions, we are tagged as naïve because it seems almost several Nigerians are suffering from intellectual myopism. Short memory and short-term benefits are hallmarks of the Nigerian society.
Nigerian politicians and rulers only go abroad, open their mouths, admire structures, buildings, take tourist photos and return home to boast of their exploits. They have no sense of direction that they need to improve Nigeria to the level that they see and enjoy when they visit abroad. In several cases of stupidity they bring raw cash and buy properties abroad. Some individuals buy properties that could have been used to provide housing for an entire state in Nigeria. This is how stupid, senseless and idiotic some Nigerian public officers/ politicians are. Yet they have admirers and followers.
In recent times when Nigeria gave orders that Ivory Coast should be invaded, following as a puppet in the order of Sarkozy and Ouattara, Ghana stood back as the father of Africa and opposed the invasion. War Crimes have been committed in Ivory Coast in the name of the United Nations, Nigeria and France. It took Ghanaians to bring the images of massacre to the world through a well-documented and organised protest.
Ghana knows what the future is all about and as a country she is preparing for it. Ghana since the days of Rawlings has never acted for the moment. Rawlings and Kuffour never acted for the moment. They love their country and acted for the future. This is what all Ghanaians are doing. A leader showed the way and they have never looked back since. They are imbibing the spirit of Nkrumah, one of Africa’s best known nationalists.
If Nigerians can look beyond the moment they will know that as far as this world is concerned Nigeria is nowhere to the found on the map of nations/country with sense and purpose. We conduct questionable elections like they were done more than 2000 years ago. We vote or support a 12-year old failed party and we think it’s ok! We celebrate corruption and ill-gotten wealth in the name of God. Our institutions are dead and quality public education is totally absent.
I can count in a thousand ways why Ghana, rather than Nigeria is the (rising) giant of Africa.
May the present spirit of Ghana fill the whole of Africa!
By Adeola Aderrounmu