Drinking the Salty Sea Water

Photo: Jernej Graj - Unsplash


In the grand theater of nations, Ghana stands at a perplexing crossroads. With no clear direction, orientation, structure, or foundation, we seem to have lost our way. The essence of our national identity is a riddle without a solution, an enigma that eludes even the most astute thinkers among us.

Ask any Ghanaian what the philosophy of the country is, and you will find them at a loss. In a society perpetually divided between the Blue Corner and the Red Corner, we have become incapable of switching gears or finding a harmonious balance. This political binary has entrenched us in a cycle of stagnation, where progress is sacrificed on the altar of partisan bickering.

It is ironic, then, that we should look deep into the mirror and wonder why we are failing. The reflection staring back at us is not just a failure of leadership but a collective failure to engage in meaningful self-examination. We have become so accustomed to the harshness of political noise that we have forgotten the quiet introspection necessary for genuine progress.

Our national discourse is akin to drinking the salty sea water—thirsty for change, yet continuously consuming what only exacerbates our plight. The more we drink, the thirstier we become, trapped in a vicious cycle of unfulfilled desires and hollow promises. This metaphor extends beyond politics to every facet of our society, where superficial solutions are mistaken for substantive progress.

Education, for instance, is heralded as the key to our future, yet the system remains plagued by inadequacies. Students are taught to memorize rather than to think critically, to conform rather than to innovate. We have institutions without institutional integrity, structures without structural soundness. Our foundations are built on shifting sands, and we wonder why they crumble under the slightest pressure.

In economics, we chant the mantras of growth and development, yet our policies are often shortsighted and reactionary. We fail to leverage our abundant resources, instead becoming overly dependent on external aid and imports.

The irony is palpable -a nation rich in natural wealth, yet impoverished by mismanagement and myopia…

Culturally, we pride ourselves on our rich heritage, yet we struggle to forge a contemporary identity that resonates with our young population. Tradition and modernity are often pitted against each other, rather than being woven into a cohesive tapestry that reflects our evolving society.

The irony deepens when we consider our social fabric. We champion unity and diversity, yet tribalism and discrimination persist. We preach equality and justice, yet the gaps between the rich and the poor, the powerful and the powerless, continue to widen. Our social contracts are written in invisible ink, disappearing when most needed.

So here we are, at the precipice, contemplating our next move while clutching our cups of salty sea water. Will we continue to quench our thirst with the very poison that dehydrates us? Or will we have the courage to seek fresh water, to chart a new course that is guided by a clear and coherent national philosophy?

To do so requires more than just political will—it demands a collective awakening, a renaissance of thought and action. It requires us to transcend the superficial divides of the Blue and Red Corners and to engage in a deep, sustained dialogue about who we are and what we aspire to be. It calls for a revitalizing of our educational, economic, cultural, and social systems, grounded in principles that promote genuine growth and inclusivity.

In this new dawn, we must redefine our relationship with ourselves and with the world. We must embrace the complexity of our identity and the multiplicity of our experiences. Only then can we build a foundation that is resilient and enduring.

As we stand on the shores of our potential, let us choose to abandon the salty sea water and seek the fresh streams of wisdom, innovation, and unity. The journey ahead is arduous, but it is the only way to ensure that our nation does not just survive but thrives.

Desmond John Beddy