Ghanaians must rediscover themselves to overcome poverty

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Cp Martin Dery
Cp Martin Dery

Charter President (CP) of the Rotary Club of Wa and Executive Director of ProNet North, Mr Martin Dery has said that poverty can only be done away with in Ghana when the people discover their roots.

Mr Dery said this in Wa when he addressed a Rotary Club conference on the topic, “NGO Contribution to Poverty Reduction in Northern Ghana” over the weekend.

He said Ghanaians have been baptized to shun their culture, food, housing and clothing and rather live a culture that is alien which has imposed greater hardship on the people’s lives.

“Our problem is one of mindset and the mindset is not our fault, it is not natural. We have been educated to have this new mindset, we have been told that our culture is inferior, our languages are not good enough, our foods are not up to standard, they are not nutritious, so we have all been removed from our natural state.

“Unless we get back to nature and recognize that we are who we are. Our foods are nutritious and our foods are not that expensive to prepare, they don’t even need any refrigeration, but what do we see now, foreign things have been imposed on us,” CP Dery explained.

CP Dery said that the rediscovery process has to start with the children and youth of the country as he believed that the elderly generation has deeply strayed.

“It is going to take some time but we must start with the young people, the old people, excuse me to say, we can only direct but we are a lost generation. The youth need to embrace these values that are getting missing.

“And the youth must begin to ask questions, ask us the senior people: what are we leaving for you, how do we expect you to continue, what kind of environment are we going to leave for you, what agric system?

“These questions, the youth must ask all of us, everyone’s child should ask their parent. If we have that kind of universality, there would be a change,” he said.

He advised the youth to eschew their differences and inclination to partisanship and come together as a unified front and demand fair representation and development.

“The youth must stop this, ‘I belong to TESCON, I belong to TEIN’, the youth cannot be divided. If the youth are divided, we are going nowhere; the youth must see themselves as a political party.

“What is the difference between an NDC youth and an NPP youth? They face the similar problems, they both face unemployment. If the youth ask the same questions, political must answer, and campaign messages would change,” CP Dery advised.

CP Dery also urged NGOs to conscientize people to change their mindsets and attitudes to move away from partisanship which breeds corruption and ineptitude.

He said politics has come to stay but that partisanship should be eschewed as he said people must vote based on competence and not on ‘colours’.

Incoming Rotarian President (RP) of the Rotary Club of Wa, RP-elect, Mr Alhassan Inusah Agambire said the meeting was one of a series to discuss issues that pertained to the development of northern Ghana and the country at large.

He said the choice of topic was informed by the fact that numerous Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) were present and working in the northern half of the country and yet issues of poverty still stared the people in the faces.

RP-elect Agambire said the country must begin to discover ways of doing things differently so as to improve upon the quality of life of the people and reduce poverty.

He said the meetings and discussions are aimed at engendering debates and finding new ways of doing things that would improve people’s lives.

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