Ghana's Trading Hub News

DICs, Dogbe, DCEs and Disunity: Weekly Wrap-Up from the Morning Man

Ok, let's do the weekly wrap-up.

On Monday, we had some visitors. The staff of the Destination Inspection Companies came to see us. It was their last day at work, and they were concerned that, since government had cancelled their contracts, they were all out of jobs, out of options and out of time. Meanwhile, these were well trained and skilled personnel, so they wanted to petition the President to amalgamate them into Customs, who were now tasked with doing the valuations that the DICs had been doing for a decade and a half.

Now, while I sympathise with anyone about to lose their job, while I don't want their children to go hungry, I do have to ask myself: these guys have done our valuation for 15 years, and our ports have leaked revenue for 15 years. They have been in charge for 15 years and corruption has been in force for 15 years. They've had the job for 15 years and we've had people devaluing imports and cheating the people of Ghana out of import duties for 15 years. It's ok. it's enough.

As the legendary sage, deep-thinking philosopher, and presidential communicator, Sam George, once said, when water stays in a bottle for too long, it smells. So we've cancelled the smelly water contract and handed over to the fresh water of Customs. Now, the staff of these DICs want us to contaminate the fresh water with the smelly?
Tuesday was the day Manasseh joined us with the rather revealing interview he had with the GJA President, Afail Monney. We heard the lead representative of Ghana's journalists confirm that a GBC journalist - a member of his own staff - had been attacked by presidential staffer, Stan Dogbe, who had seized and smashed the journalist's recorder at the hospital, where they were both attending to visit other journalists who had been injured in a car accident while covering a presidential trip - an accident that had already claimed the life of one journalist.

Now, in any other party of the world, the rest of this account would be of the actions that have been taken since this obscenity was perpetrated against an innocent journalist. But this is an upside-down republic, so instead, I will tell you what HASN'T happened. The crime has not been reported to the police. The journalist has not publicly spoken of the matter. The GBC has not made known any action they have taken to seek redress on behalf of their assaulted and victimised employee.

The police has not seen fit to investigate on the strength of the media reportage of the incident. The GJA President has not taken up the matter formally on behalf of the journalist, or indeed, all other journalists who could fall victim to this and other press-freedom-violating presidential minions. Stan Dogbe has not publicly apologised to the journalist - and all other people of Ghana - for his primitive, indecorous, and downright criminal behaviour. The President has not launched a public investigation into this matter. The President has not removed Stan Dogbe from his team or distanced himself from the embarrassment of the man's admitted actions - in fact, the President has not said a word about this incident.

So, to sum up, the President's close aide and advisor on press matters has assaulted a member of the press and smashed his property, and nobody has done anything about it - not the victim, not the victim's employers, not the GJA, not the President. Yeah, that sounds about right.
On Wednesday, we tried to find out why people just didn't give two figs about the District Level Elections. I gave my reason why I didn't vote, and it's simple. There's no point. My chosen Assembly person is incapable of representing me, when all decisions at assembly level will ultimately be made by a DCE or MCE who is appointed by the president. It presents a roadblock in the flow of democracy, and so I don't see the point of choosing a person to represent me in an impotent capacity.
Yesterday was interesting. In addition to asking the fast-becoming rhetorical question, "na barges no wo hen", we also took another trip down bickering lane, as the nation's biggest opposition party, the NPP soiled itself again - this time, with a money scandal, which revealed the deep-set cracks in their fast-wrinkling façade. We'll see how long it takes for them to change their diapers this time around. But the question remains: how can these people expect the voters to trust them with our resources when they clearly don't even trust themselves?

So today, we're wrapping it all up with a big, big show! Compelling conversations about charity, challengers and single mothers. Don't miss a moment.

My name is Kojo Yankson, and it's been a week of DICs, Dogbe, DCEs and Disunity.


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    If you really knew the work of the DIC's you would not write such useless articles to ridicule their loss of jobs. For 15 years as you said DIC's do documentary classification and valuation based on what the importer or agent submits to them. So therefore your "fresh water" customs officers who are on ground at the ports are responsible for physical checks and are responsible for release of items imported or exported. Tell me who is now responsible for loss of revenue and corruption for 15 years??
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