HOME WATCH; The Need for Popular Participation, Capacity Building and Empowerment for Social and Economic Development

We as a tribe often postulate that your self valuation has a direct bearing on the bargain for your actual cost. It is also true that only the fool assesses the dept of a river with both feet.

The fact that the devil​provides jobs for the idle calls for conscious efforts to put measures in place to enable us make descent livings in order to enjoy the social order according to our abilities.

Governance, good Governance of course, is very essential in the process of providing the necessary conditions aimed at facilitating the efforts of individuals and communities towards person and general development. Personal development is therefore the starting point because we need people to make good use of other resources from the environment to ensure sustainable development.

The philosophy of the dog, according to my people, has been that; he prays for the betterment of the world and if God Almighty will not do that then He should make his community better. If God will not make his community better then He should consider his home but the corner where he inhabits in the home takes precedent. I am a staunch adherent of the dog’s​philosophy and for that matter, the political environment of Karaga district relative to the Capacity Building and Empowerment of the teaming youth for sustainable development is often a major issue of concern.

It is very true that successive governments from the 2004 general election have made efforts through mainly local government, to respond to the developmental needs of my people. The central government, District Assembly and the Members of parliament and in many cases, Non-governmental Organisations often implement policies and provide essential services to promote the interests of the people.

A lot of resources(mainly public resources) have been channelled into the implementation of policies for the public good. We are still however several thousands of miles away from being categorised into the average  “elite”  society in which the people have assess to the liberties that enable them to enjoy the social order. The missing ingredients are Capacity Building and Empowerment. To reserve key aspects of these ingredients for next episode of this article on the concepts of Empowerment and Capacity Building of the indegines of Karaga district, it is extremely important to point out some of the reasons why we as the teaming youth must make efforts to empower ourselves.

In the first place, the representatives of government at the lower levels are politically biased in the partisan manner. The political leadership are only interested in the next election than your real welfare and only pretend to save the “fish from drowning”.

Secondly, your community shall only be deemed to deserve basic social and economic amenities mainly due to it’s affiliation to the ruling party or efforts to use the amenities as baits to capture it.

Thirdly, even under the umbrella of your supposed supporting party, you must belong to the ruling group before they consider your Empowerment (you can belong to opposition in the ruling party).Furthermore, your relevance ends when your unending efforts that denied you sound sleeps and vital friends just for the sake of the political success of your party and so called Messiah, yields good results for them. What happened to the youth who disregarded the kind hearted wisdom of the aged, who unnecessarily fought with others and lied to the desperate and the destitute, to garner support for their so called parties? Have they harvested any crops from their farms? What happened to the university academic facility user fees (AFUF) of their wards in school? Your party in power may only support if your dad supported the constituency chairman who now owns the Member of Parliament and the District Chief Executive respectively.

The university shall sack you from the examination hall as a young teacher seeking higher academicqualification for upgrading yourself should you wait for the Messiah to pay your fees for you, rather than resorting to the usual hand of the ghost (loan). You will afterwards realise that some people gained support from the common fund of your district or that of the MP and they are still asking for the direction to the district capitalfrom friends.

What was the result of your brothers who underwent public recruitment processes? The process was sold to thehighest biders, and the painful aspect being that they must not be natives.Your uncle have been a casual night watchman for ages and has now lost the less than GHC 100.00 per month tokenpromised him from the onset. Nobody remembers that his backyard was the meeting grounds for propaganda to benefit the Messiah before election. 

Again, you shall be required to channel your communication, assessment requests and decisions regarding your already enslaved political endeavours through strange personal assistants with questionable missions and visions for the district, who shall decide your faith based on information they gather from your colleague hungry unempowered party foot soldiers. If you complain frequently for the right thing to be done, your leadership will find better sugar coated lies to trap your for further slavery or better still, tell you to go and leave their party.

To please them and restore their trust on you or and maintain your hope, you resort to borrowing to purchase internet bundles to upload the pictures and activities of useless policitians andtheir cabal and praise them as your mentors, whiles you are hungry. The truth is, most of them pass for mentees than you. If you realize how pathetic  your life would remain if you continue the praise singing, these greedy personalities will get people you respect so much to calm you down to continue the slavery. They would provide some jobs for very few lucky slaves among you to remind you how they dignify your interests, just for you to continue the slavery.

By the time you come back to your real sense, there is already a barrier between you and your family and friends who you could have collaborated with, to empower yourself. The biggest challenge has often been that we mistakenly, and due to greed, believe that our “own” shall not be able to serve us in government thereby opening floodgates for very smart and financially capable personalities and “liers” from elsewhere to use us for their private interests.It is not entirely out of place and order to partake in the partisan political activities of my dear Karaga district. 

However, if you harbour a lame mindset that you shall not succeed without the now dirty politics of our time,there is a long journey ahead of you. What happened to the unending number of your “predecessors” who were/are disappointed by the cabal of greedy personalities leading both sides of the environment? Is it not the right time we undertake comprehensive assessment of the Social and political environment to enhance popular participation, capacity building and empowerment for sustainable development. Is it not the right time we realize that the teaming youth will get nowhere unless we ensure that persons who partake in the everyday normal struggles of the land lead our efforts to provide us with the liberty to enjoy the social and economic facilities of the land without much strings attached?

For how long shall we continue to serve as slaves in our efforts to enjoy the basic facilities our own sweats contributed in the form of basic rates, registration fees, tolls, taxes among others, for the government to provide? In the meantime, the process starts from us all; we must empower ourselves.

Abdul-Ganiyu Iddirisu

The writer is a student of Governance and Sustainable Development, with Master of Arts in Governance andSustainable Development from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana.(iddigandi2011@gmail.com)

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