Monday, February 25, 2008

Can Kenya happen in Ghana?

The upheaval in Kenya has shocked many observers


by Etse Sikanku

Ever since the Kenyan crisis erupted many have expressed surprise about how easily one of Africa’s exemplar nations could be dogged into such morass.

The question has been asked many times-in private and in public-if such a situation could happen in Ghana.

In as much as I’d hate to be the doom monger I sincerely believe Ghana is way past the question of ‘if’ to ‘when’. It is not so much a matter of if it will happen but when it will.

This may be a hard pill to swallow but take this: Ghana is sitting on a time bomb.

P.V Obeng in his lecture to the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology has said exactly what has been on my mind for quite a while now.

Let’s take a step back and reflect folks, if conscious efforts are not made to address the political, tribal and economic hotspots in Ghana the consequences will be too ghastly to contemplate.

I have covered some of the most violent demonstrations in Ghana and I think the notion that the country can never be plunged into chaos is an invention of a nomadic imagination.

What is more it is not difficult to point to any one region in Ghana which does not have its own land, chieftaincy or some form of conflict or the other.

Indeed I have ceased to delude myself in the notion that Ghana will never be Rwanda or Kenya.
The other thing that makes things worse is Ghana’s willingness to rather shut off any discussion of such notions than address the issues head on.

In truth the Ghanaian state has everything going for it and the people have done well to keep sway for past decades till now.

But the seeming peace may soon fade into oblivion and many Ghanaians will be shocked beyond belief if they choose to play the ostrich while it’s still daylight.

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