This morning, I am yet again met with another shocking but not surprising news from my motherland- Ghana. It is shocking but not surprising because there has been numerous horrific events and decisions that have gone against the progress of the nation and all I ask is where are the thinkers of the nation?
Yesterday, a report from the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) had it that Ghana is getting only 17% revenue from oil production whiles Nigeria gets 51% and Botswana gets 65% from their oil. The Research Fellow at the IFS Dr Adu Owusu Sarkodie presented the matter and further exposed the grave state of our oil production.
The whole point in all this is negotiation- simple. Ghana doesn’t have the ability to discover and produce oil in the country. We have not invested in that as a nation. Therefore, international organizations come in pretty hand to help us mine our own minerals. But one thing is clear, we have the mineral and the international organizations have the expertise and equipment. Without our minerals, their existence is inconsequential and so we have the power to negotiate for better terms. Besides, if one company doesn’t have the desire to work under our terms, we can switch to another.
It is very disheartening to see Ghana suffer for lack of impressive thinkers. Look Botswana started their oil production earning 25% and today they have grown to earn 65% from oil production. They essentially reinvented the money they got from the oil- they had deep thinkers and innovative negotiators.
Look, from 2012 to 2018, Nigeria oil produced 43.7 billion but earned 22.8 billion on average according to the IFS report. What exactly prevents us from learning from the best or close to the best? Come to think of it, can’t Ghana produce experts in this regard? Ghana is full of minerals and fertile soil but we lack thinking leaders who can navigate our resources.
Hear me, minerals are abundant and even more valuable than agriculture. I admit agriculture is valuable but we don’t need legions in that field. Just 5% competent farmers from our population can feed the whole of Ghana. However, Ghana has 70% of the population being farmers and still, we don’t even have an abundance of food. We have lost focus.
Ghana should rather direct our education system to engineering, mining courses, construction and build more citizens that can mine and run our affairs. Like how Cuba trains doctors and gives to other countries for a fee. Again, with the changing dynamics in world matters- we should also invest in training citizens in robotics, AI, Space Exploration, going Green in buildings, electric cars and many more.
Where are the thinkers of the nation?
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