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Emancipation, diaspora inclusion, home-coming, year of return, just think of any name or description, we have used them interchangeably to encourage Ghanaians living abroad and African Americans who claim ancestorship in Ghana, to return home and join in the development of our country.
Governments after governments have made concerted and intentional efforts in the past to advance that agenda of “returnees” inclusion.
The laudable idea is to encourage the importation of rainbow talents and skills of our people out there to Ghana’s benefit. We even at a point in time had a Ministry with focused attention on Diaspora Relations.
We have succeeded beautifully to import Ghanaian talents in the area of football for international matches including World Cup.
We bring our shining stars in foreign clubs to come and join our boys to play because of the added skills they have acquired abroad.
Yet, in other professional areas, we have a problem and ask questions: “where was the competitive bidding”? “Why no public advertising”? “Why, we have the men right here to do it” and so forth.
All these questions and thoughts have been flashing in my mind as I go through the many media cries, social media included, about the selection of some professionals for the execution of the Agenda 111 project of the government to construct or upgrade 111 hospitals across the country into modern acceptable health facilities.
I have been struggling to understand why the selection or inclusion of Sir David Adjaye’s architectural company in the designing of some of the hospitals under Agenda 111 is directly or indirectly generating so many eye-popping. My simple question is why the rejection?
Is it because he is not qualified as an architect with the skills required? Is it that he is a foreigner from nowhere with no business registration in Ghana? The answers are obvious. He is a Ghanaian-British. Dual citizenship is allowed, right?
He is an architect of good reputation known for designing many notable buildings around the world including the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, right? He was recognised and knighted by the Queen of England in 2017 in the country’s New Year Honours for services to architecture, correct?
He operates globally with offices in Accra, London and New York. So, based on the call for inclusion of Ghanaian skills in a laudable project as Agenda 111, which will benefit Ghanaians today and generations to come, does this man’s services, among