In search of authenticity

In March this year Elnathan John, the Nigerian author of Born on a Tuesday, was in Ghana to promote his novel. I attended a reading he held at Vidya bookstore in Osu and I had a fun time. When we had the chance to ask him questions, a lot of them focused on his identity and the experience of growing up as a minority in Northern Nigeria (I admit I asked that question). One woman specifically asked him whether he felt the tale of a Hausa Muslim in Northern Nigeria was his to tell  Continue reading

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What exactly is an enabling environment?

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An entrepreneur, Naa, is deciding to expand her business beyond her country. She has two choices – Country A and Country B. Both countries are developing countries but they have two distinct ideas of how to progress and they’re both interested in creating an enabling environment for business.

Country A believes the responsibility of the state is to provide infrastructure and security and to allow the private sector to do the rest.

The business Continue reading

John Mahama’s campaign is flawed

jmWith the party primaries of the NDC coming off on November 21, one cannot help but notice the several posters, banners and billboards bearing the faces and slogans of men and women hoping to get into or remain in parliament. There are several competitive match ups in the primaries that call for this level of campaigning however, the most visible campaign belongs to the contestant in the easiest primary race Continue reading

On Jeremy Corbyn, Ghana and a new kind of Politics

Jeremy Corbyn, MP. PHOTO: theguardian.com

Jeremy Corbyn, MP. PHOTO: theguardian.com

Veteran Labour MP for Islington North, Jeremy Corbyn, has won the leadership election of the Labour Party in one of the most surprising electoral races in history. Earlier on in the race he was considered the least likely to win the election but the support of the unions and his opposition to a welfare bill that the rest of Labour abstained from helped Corbyn to surge Continue reading

Is the Ghanaian Left Missing out on Socially Liberal Voters?

In many political environments around the world the political parties on the Left are not only progressive in economic policies but also progressive in social issues. However, from my review of policy and ideological positions of political parties in Ghana I realised that only one party in the country, the GCPP, had sought to appeal to social liberals in its party platform. The rest of the political parties Continue reading

Is Partisanship a Good or Bad Force in Ghana Politics?

Partisanship is usually listed among the issues derailing Ghana’s march to development. And in truth, it is sometimes amusing to see how minds can change on issues depending on the position of a political party on it. This type of alignment of public opinion to the views of political parties is more remarkable because of the ideological flipflopping of the two major political parties.

It appears then that rather than ideology Continue reading

A Guide to the Ideologies of Political Parties in Ghana

A political party’s ideology guides its economic, social, governance, legal and foreign policies. One of the most vivid methods by which an ideology can be visualised is by the description of an ideal world as envisioned by the adherents of that ideology. For example, if your ideal world is one in which everything is owned by everyone (no privately-held property) and shared according to need, you are a Continue reading

The New Rush for Parliament

In the last few weeks, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, George Andah, Phillip Addison and Abeiku Santana have expressed their intention to contest in party primaries for the right to be party candidates for parliament in the general elections in 2016. I have heard some commentators welcome the move as an indication that people are becoming more conscious of their duty towards the country and are now willing to directly contribute to governance.

The intention of Kojo and George especially Continue reading

Why Ghanaians are closely following the Nigerian Election

As Nigerians await the declaration of the winner of what would eventually be their closest election since 1999, Ghanaians also appear to have taken a keen interest in the elections. From the interview of Nigerian politicians on Ghanaian media houses to the publishing of provisional results from some states, it appears no other foreign election has captured the attention of Ghanaians this much since Obama’s re-election battle in 2012.

Part of this can be explained by the fact that Continue reading

Parties Should Still Try to Increase Women MPs

This post was originally meant to commend the New Patriotic Party’s decision not to allow men to contest the parliamentary primaries for the seats held by women. The party was attempting to increase or at least preserve the 16 seats it has in parliament that are held by women. However, pressure from supporters has forced the party to reverse the directive.

In the 5th Parliament, women Continue reading