Celebrating Christmas in hard times

 Celebrating Christmas in hard times

• Christmas gifts

In spite of the inflationary trends in Ghana and other parts of the world, many shops across the world have started advertising products for the Christmas season expecting prospective customers to come and patronise them in line with the demands of the season.

This is not surprising, seeing that Christmas is considered a special occasion of joy and happi­ness. Here in Ghana, many shops have also start­ed advertising different kinds of products aimed at enticing customers to come and buy.


What others are saying, however, is that economic conditions are difficult and for this reason, Christmas would not be as enjoyable as it used to be. This is not coming as a surprise be­cause over the past 15 years or so, people have always complained that things in the previous year were better. Since 2017, when the econ­omy was stable and prices were reasonable, it becomes reasonable to say that compared with the year 2022, things are tougher.

In spite of this, Ghanaians must know that even in the past, there were certain years in which things were really difficult, indeed, more difficult than they are today. In 1983 for exam­ple, there were bushfires all over the country. A development that was difficult to understand. Many people at the time especially old men and women lost their lives due to widespread hunger.


Foodstuffs were difficult to come by and even if one came across them, their prices were sim­ply unbearable compared with today.

Commodities like sugar, milk and what is known as provisions generally became known as essential commodities and these were sold under restrictions in supermarkets.


These supermarkets had to be sold within the range of controlled prices. The application of controlled prices meant that the market was highly controlled or regulated.

Those were the days when many market women were flogged in public when found to have sold above controlled prices. Those days were terrible and we pray that they do not come to us again.


Commodities like sugar, milk etc that had become essentialised had to be rationed among students, work­ers and other sections of the public.

Today, all these commodities are available and we do not have to struggle over them because of scarcity. The only problem is that their prices have gone very high.


Again, in those unpleasant days, fuel was always scarce and people had to join long queues before being able to get some litres, inadequate though, to satisfy their demands. Those days were horrible and any per­son in Ghana today who is not less than 50 can testify to this. Soap was simply not available and a local one made to fill the vacuum was simply so substandard that when used on the skin, the skin began to peel off. No wonder it was jokingly described as “Don’t touch me”.

Ghana today has, therefore, seen worse days so people should think of today’s conditions as far better though not satisfactorily acceptable. If this is the case, then we stand the chance of making things far better for everyone in this country.


As has been pointed out by Togbe Sry III during the celebration of this year’s Hogbetsotso festival, Gha­naians must give the government a chance to rebuild the economy and make things better for people in this country. This is possible because the economy was in a good shape from 2017 to 2020 under the same Akufo-Addo led government.

The government should, therefore, not be judged on the basis of this year alone when things are a little difficult because of external factors like the COVID-19 pandemic and the effects of the Russia-Ukraine war.


It had been argued in certain quarters that the debts the country faces started rising high before the pandemic and also the Russia-Ukraine war. This is true but the mounting debts are justifiable in the sense that our national resources were not wasted but soundly used to put up hospitals for all districts and regions. These hospitals fall under what is known as Agenda 111.

Apart from Agenda 111, the Free SHS and Free Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) have also eaten deep into government expenditure.


Other programmes like Planting for Food and Jobs and One District One Factory, among others have all contributed to the debts of the nation. If this is the case, then the Akufo-Addo Administration cannot be blamed for the current economic situation.

Ghanaians should be happy that they are still alive and getting ready to celebrate Christmas which is an occasion of peace and joy for humankind. The advice to everybody is that the little money we have should be used wisely and judiciously so that we would be able to maximise our happiness and satisfaction. This is what we all need to do for the celebration of the upcoming Christmas.

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