Every year comes with its own collection of chills, thrills and surprises that come along and leave their marks in the memories of the living and the previous year was no different.
As the year zoomed by, Ghanaian landscape saw its fare share of the high’s, the low’s, the cheers and the jeers of 2018. And coming into a new year, some memories of those memories will be cherished and relived – others will have to stay past. Those are the reminders of the painful lessons that we hope never to learn again – mistakes that we hopefully will not repeat. (Emphasis on hopefully.)
1. The Abuse of the Media
Although the year 2018 saw Ghana swiping the award for the country with the highest Press Freedom on the African continent, the thirty-one brutal assaults on media professionals recorded at the end of the year seemed to say otherwise. The journey to achieving socio-economic development will be long and torturous is to ever witness in its fullness any time soon we would have to abandon this mission of empowering and encouraging the abuse of media personel.
And if this country is to see development anytime soon we would have to forgo [fight] the culture of sweeping the abuse of the media under the rug. Unless we breed a soceity that refuses to shield ‘media abusers’ the journey to development will be long and torturous.
2. The God-awful Sanitation Crisis
Going into 2018, we heard the ambitious and oft-repeated promise to make Accra the cleanest city on the continent. To be honest to ourselves, we are miles away from achieving that goal. And the national cake of blame is large enough to be shared by everyone.
From the Mayor of Accra to the vendor on the streets on Circle, everyone, it seems, has deserted their patriotic duty to keep the Metropolitan clean and habitable. Even the media have had their hands full with other matters that have overshadowed the issue of sanitation in importance. And whilst we all were busy pursuing our own ambitions, the city has grown from dirt to dirt. And that needs to change in the coming year.
3. The misshapen school system
Free SHS – it was a policy that carried the promise of revolutionizing secondary school education in Ghana once and for all. It was, for a greater part, the promise on whose back the incumbent government rode into power. But after its implementation, it has also become the promise that came along with unforeseen burdens.
Speaking to a teacher in a public school in Greater Accra, I was told of how the ‘new and improved’ secondary school became a pile-up unto the problems of the system. According to sources, the new structure only increased the amount of stress a teacher had to cope with in the undertaking of his duties.
In the defense of the government, they sought to and have succeeded in proving that they were capable of enforcing their promise. There’s just one problem – their promise needs improving.
And until that happens, they risk leaving a legacy of being the government that ruined the education of millions to fulfil political ambitions.
Like any other year, 2019 promises to be a year of oppurtunity, new beginnings and the door to a new horizon. And it hinges on us all to learn from the past, focus on the present and prepare for the future.
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