Professor Ransford Gyampo, a senior political science lecturer at the University of Ghana, has lauded President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his last State of the Nation Address (SONA).
He said the SONA, which gave a vivid account of the President’s first four years in Office, was concise, erudite, straightforward and simple.
Prof Gyampo noted that President Akufo-Addo touched virtually on everything from where Ghana was, at the time he was sworn in as President on January 7, 2017, and what the situation in his view was as at now.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency on Tuesday in Accra in reaction to the SONA, Prof Gyampo commended the President for being honest in telling Ghanaians what his administration had done over the past four years.
However, Prof Gyampo said the SONA coming just after 2020 General Election that witnessed some deaths should have contained some comment about the needless loss of lives and commiseration with the family of the departed.
It should also have come with some vows and commitment to resolving infractions of the law, with the view to forestalling the recurrence of such unwarranted deaths in any future elections.
With regard to the call in the SONA for a national conversation about illegal mining, Prof Gyampo said there was no need for such a call.
He explained that the disastrous effects of illegal mining on the nation’s water bodies, and on the very sources of human livelihood in the country, were unquantifiable and the quest to maintain political power, should not be enough to make any regime relent in fighting it.
“If the last SONA cannot be formally debated by Parliament, then it is about time we interrogated its relevance after doing it over and over again. If it is merely to provide parliamentarians with information about what has been done, then we can simply send the speech to the Members of Parliament (MPs) electronically, rather than wasting resources to convene a sitting,” he said.
“We must work to operationalize constitutional imperatives, else the rigid application of rules without contextualizing them, will keep ushering thinking human beings, into a regime of robots.”
Prof Gyampo appealed to both the Majority and Minority leaders of Parliament to tone down their rhetoric to enhance consensus building in the House.