The Centre for Africa Development and progress (CADeP) has come to the realisation that change can come within a very short time. The COVID-19 pandemic has made the world more level for all kinds of people, whether rich or poor. The responses to the COVID-19 pandemic are simply amplifications of the dynamic forces which drive socio-economic and ecological crises.
The way we relate with one another should fundamentally change with COVID-19, just like any pandemic that is partly a problem of our economic structure. COVID-19 appears to be a global problem and socially-driven through advancements in technology, and its repercussions on human existence cannot be over-emphasised. What has happened to the world requires a deliberate mental and environmental revolution among the nations, emanating from this tiny virus.
Therefore, tackling COVID-19 will be easier if economies reduce non-essential economic activities. Now, the epidemiology of the disease is quickly evolving, and in this time of state protocols compelling people to observe social distancing, restricting the movement of people, banning public gatherings – coupled with the closure of borders, many non-essential activities have been curtailed.
This pandemic places every human being on an equal level, and it requires affection with one another to restrain people from displaying a posture of superiority toward any race, colour or creed.
What CADeP wants to say is: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way”. Now is the time for every one of us to review our own behavior, the conduct that will accelerate you to go into action. When you become that best person with good behaviour, you can inspire others as a true and responsible person. This behaviour will influence others just like the virus infects, and this will be the beginning of the ‘Pandemic of Better Behaviour’.
This pandemic must be a great awakening that enables people to humble themselves and shun undesirable tendencies toward one another. All humanity should learn the lesson to be kind and live exemplary lives by impacting society with their unique personalities.
“The things one does for him/herself are gone when one passes on; but the little things that people do for others remain their legacy for a long time. The purity of the heart holds supreme in one’s dealing with people, and that person stands to carve the good name that is better than riches.”
A lot of people in the world today are not happy with their lives with the advent of COVID-19, but they should not be angry with their respective countries for what they don’t have, since sometimes life doesn’t give them what they want – not because they don’t deserve it, but because they probably deserve more. With most businesses operating at low capacity, the affluent people should design a blueprint on how to assist the jobless gain some income generation work!!!
The closing of borders, the stay at home and banning of public gatherings which are aimed at slowing down the spread of COVID-19, have placed pressure on global economies, resulting in the world facing a serious recession. This reminds the world that pandemic diseases are no respecter of any class of person; therefore, CADeP calls for a change of culture in our endeavours. And thus it would like to use this opportunity to encourage fellow Ghanaians that corrupt practices by people at the helm of affairs should be condemned in no uncertain terms, because acts of corruption in any form is a disgrace and tends to derail the process for bringing the economy back on track, since governments are supposed to spend huge monies and resources on social interventions for the needy.
CADeP is urging the governments in Ghana and other African countries to create the enabling environment toward economic emancipation, with less dependence on foreign aid. Therefore, the current government should cut down its expenditure and ensure its agenda toward Ghana beyond aid is pursued with the urgency it deserves.
Government should enforce the regulations on state protocols to ensure spread of the disease is reduced drastically, with intensive public education on the ways of staying healthy and adhering to personal hygiene, while supporting the research toward quickly finding vaccines using both chemical and herbal sources for the treatment of COVID-19.
There are media reports on stigmatisation of people who have tested positive, and even recovered from the disease – which our society cannot condone. And the people engaged in this negative culture should be condemned by the vast majority society, for displaying a grossly inhumane attitude toward mankind by refusing to show love and sympathy for victims.
There should be more education carried out at the district and metropolitan levels of the country, teaching that anyone can be a victim of COVID-19. The education must change the misconceptions about the disease: it is not a death sentence, nor curse from the gods, and the victims are recovering due to their treatment – and those recovered from the pandemic are not COVID-19 carriers. Using the means of testimonials from recovered victims featured in the media, we must dispel fear as a way of convincing people to accept their reintegration into society.
CADeP also wishes Government would think about developing strategies on how to gklean funds from taxes to cater for the unemployed and less privileged, as practiced in the advanced countries – which has the advantage of assisting governments in carrying out their development agenda in social harmony.
We need a change of economic and social mindset, starting with the citizens seeing more opportunities in untapped fields of endeavour to allow them become more productive. This can only be achieved by using the challenges we are faced with as motivation, and being able to turn them into useful innovations.
The way forward will be to allow as many businesses and institutions as possible to keep on operating, but while adhering to the state protocols. A strong, democratic state should be built around mobilising resources for establishing stronger social intervention systems and prioritising health care for protection of the vulnerable from the effects of local and global activities, while creating the needed enabling environment for citizens to live with zero-hunger, good health and wellbeing – in line with the Sustainable Development Goals 2 and 3.
COVID-19 is highlighting serious deficiencies in our existing system. An effective response to this is likely to require radical social change, and building a more humane system that leaves us more resilient in the face of future pandemics and other potential crises.