|President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo|
Lateness to social events – private or national – has become the norm in Ghana, with some chiefs, traditional rulers, religious leaders, government officials and politicians being the most prominent culprits.
Speaking to Parliament on Tuesday in his maiden State of the Nation Address, Nana Akufo-Addo said the wind of change blowing in the country following the change of government must affect what has become known as the “Ghana-Man-Time.”
“All three arms of government must change the way it does things,” Nana Akufo-Addo told the lawmakers.
“State functions start and close late. We must be punctual to time and I intend to set a personal example.”
In March 2016, the chairman of the National Media Commission Kwasi Gyan Apenteng also complained about the Ghanaian attitude towards time.
“Lateness is a hidden drain on our political, economic, cultural and social fabrics. The impact on lateness is felt everywhere. We need to think deeply about it together as a nation.
“In Ghana, we tend to laugh off lateness; some call it African punctuality while others say that we operate according to our own GMT – Ghana-Man-Time, which has earned us a negative reputation. But this should not be a laughing matter; we must find the solution to this debilitating national malaise,” he said.
Mr. Gyan-Apenteng expressed this sentiment while addressing a media launch of the National Dialogue on Timekeeping in Accra.
He said: “Even lateness to social events carries cost; people who go early and have to wait for the stragglers could be doing productive work elsewhere, or even resting”.