Q: What rare leadership
qualities does Dr.Spio-Garbrah bring to the Ghanaian political landscape?
A: A study of Dr. Spio' s accomplishments both domestically and internationally, reveals that he has solid leadership qualities and understands the problems of Ghana and Africa. Friends of Spio believe that he has had thorough and excellent preparation for the job of President having worked as a government minister, ambassador, senior official of international financial institutions, a banker, teacher, farmer, journalist, sales and advertising man. Furthermore, he is the only Ghanaian we know of who has held positions in four separate international organizations: the World Bank Group, the African Development Bank Group, UNESCO within the UN family, and the CTO within the Commonwealth family. All these appointments were earned essentially on merit, rather than on the basis of political lobbying.
In these positions, he has also operated at all the four critical levels of any institution' s stewardship—he has been a member of the professional staff, at the World Bank Group; a member of the management team, at the African Development Bank; the head of an organization, as CEO of the CTO; and as a member of the governing board, as an Executive Board member of UNESCO.
Through these varies experiences, he has had a very unusual opportunity to understand the inner working of organizations whose routine decisions can have critical impact on countries such as Ghana. He maintains contact with a number of important officials of these institutions, and stands the best chance of any of the candidates from either the NDC, NPP or CPP in deriving the most from these organizations.
His leadership qualities include a quick mind, solution-finding and problem-solving orientation, his dynamism, creativity and decisiveness. He has a visionary understanding of the problems of underdevelopment and the solutions to them, as well as his courage, selflessness, determination, persuasiveness, passion about Ghana, and his drive and winning attitude.
Q: Does he really understand the psyche of the Ghanaian electorate and what would he say to them to persuade them to vote for him someday?
A:The Ghanaian electorate is basically craving for a better living standard, which means to grow much faster economically and to extricate itself from the shackles of abject poverty. Dr Spio-Garbrah stated during an interview in January 2006 with Paul Adom-Otchere, on Good Evening Ghana, that social scientific research should have been conducted to ascertain why NDC lost in 2000 and 2004. We, who are Friends of Spio, believe that, if the research had been conducted, as recommended by Spio-Garbrah, the NDC could have ascertained the reasons why it lost, especially in the Central and Western regions, and at least the party would have been in a better position to conduct subsequent elections.
Dr. Spio-Garbrah has said at various times that he envisions a Ghana where unity overrides partisanship when it comes to the overall national interest. He will undoubtedly amplify this message in all its variants should he one day be nominated by his Party to run for President. We, who are his Friends, believe that the message of Unity for Development is one that will play successfully with high resonance throughout Ghana.
Q: What are Spio-Garbrah' s relationships with leaders of other political parties in Ghana, that will ensure that he can forge a common agenda for national development?
A: Dr. Spio-Garbrah has excellent relations with most of the leadership of other political parties, and enjoys very cordial and friendly relations. He is well-known to such opposition party leaders like Dr. Edward Mahama of the PNC, Dan Markin of the DPP, Danny Ofori-Atta of EGLE, Dr Delle of CPP, Prof Hagan, former flag bearer of the CPP, Mr Dan "Domestication" Lartey of the GCPP, and Goosie Tandoh of the Reform Party. As a result of these good relations, and Spio-Garbrah' s preference for open mutually respectful conversation, there is good evidence that many of these opposition leaders will prefer him to emerge from the NDC as leader one day, to ensure an opposition victory in the next elections.
His relations with other NDC leaders is sound, from Party Founder and ex-President Jerry Rawlings, and Prof Atta Mills to Alhaji Idrissu Mahama, John Mahama, Eddie Annan, members of the National and Functional Executive of the Party, Regional and Constituency Executives. His good relations extends to the NDC Parliamentary c leadership and caucus, prominent women in the Party such as Mrs Rawlings and Ama Benyiwa Doe, and Youth Leaders like Hon. Harunna Iddrisu and the younger members of Parliament. He acknowledges that there are a few people in the NDC, probably less than ten people, who on their own identified his potential leadership qualities even before he was fully aware of them, and who have decided over many years to work against his political potential and promise. This small group, it is known, are continually feeding other innocent members of the NDC and the general Ghanaian public with lies about Dr Spio-Garbrah in order to reduce his popularity or to make him hated. However, as more and more Ghanaians become acquainted with DR Spio-Garbrah, they become increasingly convinced of his good qualities and realize the lies that they are being told about him. Once they realize that they have been misled, such people become even more enthused about his leadership potential and become his ardent supporters, often going off to create their own Friends of Spio group or other Spio Fan Clubs with their own resources.
Within the NPP, there are many MPs and other regional and constituency leaders of the Party who have come out to encourage Dr. Spio-Garbrah to run someday as a party and national leader, having become very disappointed with the performance of their own Party and acknowledging that if the NDC is likely to win any future elections then Ghana is better off with a far-sighted leader such as Dr. Spio-Garbrah. He has maintained mutually respectful relations with President Kufuor, Vice President Alieu Mahama, most of the members of the NPP Cabinet and a number of Ambassadors and High Commissioners.
Q: How about his vision for the youth?
A: Having begun his working life as a graduate teacher, at the age of 19, at Adisadel College, Cape Coast, and being a father of four, Dr. Spio-Garbrah is very much a lover of the youth and a strong promoter of their ideals and potentials. As minister of Education, he surprised leaders of the National Union of Ghana students by presenting them with a 4-wheel drive and a computer, after they had led one of their annual ritual of demonstrations against the Ministry of Education and the government. The NUGS leadership confessed that he was the first Minister to have donated a vehicle to the student' s movement. His success in leading the creating of the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund), which today is doing a lot for students, teachers and lecturers, is one of the many reasons that the youth of Ghana have come to see Dr. Spio-Garbrah as a role model and look for him to assume a leadership role in Ghana.