Mr Speaker, it is so interesting for you to so soon forget me but I do understand because I used to be Bantama, which was Bantama/Nhyiaeso and Kwadaso; so, I understand you, Mr Speaker.
Mr Speaker, I would want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to associate with the tribute for an illustrious son of this nation, who was also the Prime Minister of this nation.
Mr Speaker, the Hon Member of Parliament for Wenchi, who has succeeded the former Prime Minister, Prof. Kofi Abrefa Busia, has so dearthly expounded on his academic prowers. So, permit me, Mr Speaker, to veer away from the academics and to talk a little more about his life. But Mr Speaker, in order to be short and brief, I would rather want to just pick snipets from those who lived in his life and his own speeches to illustrate who he was.
Mr Speaker, Prof. Busia has paid his dues to his motherland. And coming from a rural background, and indeed, appreciating the needs and sensibilities of the rural people, where in today's Ghana he could have been easily dubbed a cocoa ase krakye, Mr Speaker, he decided to work for the rural people.
What did he do? He expounded his political philosophy and this philosophy was as anyone would have thought -- and I think when the Professor was speaking, he spoke about democracy and capitalism. But Mr Speaker, he laced it with pragmatism, so that he catered for the people that he was representing, knowing very well what the nation at that time was and what the nation has always been.
Mr Speaker, you would therefore, find that his was a marriage of free enterprise democracy laced with mitigating social supporting policies. Indeed, because of his rural background, it was in his Government, that we first had the Ministry of Rural Development which became the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.
This vision was captured in his pre- election speeches, especially with respect to the way he looked at this country when he said that whatever we do, we should be each other's keeper. Now, what did he say, Mr Speaker? He said, we are going to create a welfare society where each would be his brother's keeper.
Here, I would want to send some apologies to the gender activists whom at that time would have said that, why did he not say his sisters or others? But Mr Speaker, he just said it to cover all of us.
Again, he re-emphasised this when he was breaking the grounds for the Accra- Tema Water Supply in 1971, when he stated that power is good or evil according to the vision that it serves. “Our vision”, Mr Speaker, that is what he said, “is that of a democratic welfare society in which everyone is his brother's keeper.”
Mr Speaker, based on these, today, we talk about National Service Scheme, which used to be the National Service Corps. Based on this, Mr Speaker, you would find that the Government that followed his philosophy, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) put in social mitigating measures that catered for the needs of our people and that is a reflection of being each other's keeper.
The NPP put in place policies like the National Health Insurance Scheme, the Free Maternal Healthcare, the Free Care for children, School Feeding Programme and all these things.
Mr Speaker, they are all a reflection of the kind of a political development and the political beliefs of the line that Prof. Busia towed --