Before we delve deep into the issue, let me tell you of a story of a popular musician who went to his favorite premium eatery where he as usual was served the most delightful food. The serenity of the environment was an ensured he enjoyed the food everytime so he always went there when hungry.
He received an usually exceptional service by the waiters and for that he always left a generous tip in addition to the overly inflated price of his meal.
He organized a show later in the year that was the talk of town. At the 6pm news bulletin, he heard that waiters of the eatery were complaining bitterly of how he’d forgotten all about the special treatment they give him and didn’t give them free tickets to his recent show.
Can you guess his reaction to the news?
What would have been your reaction if you were the Musician?
A variation of the story above is being witnessed today. The dynamics involved in politics and campaign at the constituency and grassroot level may differ in execution but the logic and the basics are similar.
We hear grassroots lamenting about the complete neglect by politicians after winning elections when the made them a mountain of promises during campaign period. I’m in no way saying their cries are not warranted. A promise is a promise and any gentleman must fulfill his promise.
But the twist is politicians are not the best of gentlemen you can find if promise fulfillment defined who a gentleman was. They are mostly cunning linguists, eloquent but can’t be trusted. Even more so when their hands are squeezed at their time of need by the grassroots in order to campaign for them.
Campaigns have become a service in effect owing to the overly monetization of the whole process. No one cares about your good intentions for the constituency, region, party or country. If you don’t have the money to spend, no one is moving a feet to support your political ambition. Politicians are therefore forced to spend huge sums, paying for the ‘services’ of campaigners in order to get their campaign message to the people.
One thing the grassroots forget is the politician’s priority after getting elected is to find a way to pay back financiers and recoup personal expenses. Therefore neglect is always going to be the outcome. Getting elected into office in Ghana today is vastly dependent on how much you can dole out. This has created the exchange of service mentality in our elected politicians and they can’t be blamed too much for refusing to honor promises to people who already charged excessively for a ‘service’ rendered.
The general and overly monetization of our political system in both intra-party and general election means politicians can justify neglecting constituents and party grassroots.
Let’s not give them anymore avenues to make excuses. Let’s stop selling our political offices to the highest bidder and rather work tirelessly to put people who has the community, party and the nation at heart.