It is funny the way Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr, writes to justify the insults heaped upon Dr. Omane Boamah, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology, during last Saturday’s Newsfile, a live radio and TV programme on Joy FM and Multi TV. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., who has been sacked from the Danquah Institute as a member of its Governing Body, has every right to get at the Executive Director, Gabriel Asare Ochere-Darko and to describe his insults as being a “rather startlingly infantile reaction”, even though he agrees with him! See: “Omane-Boamah Deserved that Bit of It”, Feature Article of Friday, 30 September 2011.
In his article titled, “Danquah was a Great Patriot, The Lie about being a CIA Agent must Stop!”, Ochere-Darko’s attempt to set the records straight, rather set out to bend the records. He would surreptitiously replace the CIA with the American Embassy as the source of the stipends, in order to argue later that Danquah had nothing to do with the CIA!:
In any case, all we need to satisfy ourselves here is whether or not the CIA was investing in Danquah with his consent. That is what makes one an asset or agent. We all know that the CIA is not a Father Christmas. There is always a quid pro quo in their expenditures. If the CIA is giving money to your wife without your knowledge, that could be a different thing. It is quite another issue, if one feels so entitled to the cash as to go and complain after it had ceased!
Did J.B. Danquah go to see the then US Ambassador to Ghana, after Nkrumah had pardoned him and other detainees on June 2, 1962, to ask “why the funds his family had been receiving during his imprisonment had been cut after his release”? Why is it that the Danquah Institute’s narrative of these events conspicuously omit the mention of the CIA, preferring to mislead the reader that:
“Dr Danquah’s family,… allegedly received stipends from the American Embassy in 1961 during his first period in jail under the Preventive Detention Act. The issue was that this was done without the knowledge of the Ambassador”?
Is this what is written in the book? Did Richard Mahoney write that Danquah’s family was being paid by the CIA or “the American Embassy”? Is the Danquah Institute so ashamed to admit the fact that it was the CIA that was paying the stipends and not “the American Embassy” as they would want us to believe?
A very strange thing is happening. Just before writing this, I visited the site of Danquah Institute to check the link to the quote above, in which they attempted to rewrite Richard Mahoney’s book by replacing the “CIA” with “the US Embassy”. Strangely enough, they have done an IMANI! The article has been withdrawn, but the title is still there: “Was J.B. Danquah A CIA Agent? All You Need To Know”.
Fortunately, the story has been shared on several websites, that is why I was able to retrieve it! The hard facts in the book written by Professor Richard D. Mahoney do not explain why Danquah was expecting the CIA to continue to pay him. But the inference that Danquah must be seen as a CIA asset, after so much investments in him is certainly not as stupid as Ochere-Darko arrogantly and insultingly begs the question with.
The fact that it was the CIA and not “the American Embassy” which was paying the stipends is very clear in the book. What is also clear is the fact that Danquah was aware of this arrangement and liked it so much as to complain when it stopped! What made him feel so entitled to it, if Danquah did not consider himself as an agent?
The story in the book, “JFK: Ordeal in Africa”, is very clear. According to Richard Mahoney, Danquah’s collaboration with the CIA became clear when he went to the US Embassy, after Nkrumah had pardon Danquah and other detainees on June 2, 1962, to ask “why the funds his family had been receiving during his imprisonment had been cut after his release.” As Dr. Kwame Botwe-Asamoah, correctly recounts, “This caused Mr. Mahoney, the new US Ambassador to Ghana to summon “the CIA chief of station to ask why he had not been advised of the agency’s association with Danquah.” Displeased with the explanation, “Mahoney flew to Washington two days later and personally informed Kennedy about the matter” (Mahoney).” – Feature Article of Monday, 25 September 2006, Columnist: Botwe-Asamoah, Kwame Dr., Fallacies of J. B. Danquah’s Heroic Legacy (V)
It is very interesting that after a storm of criticisms of the ridiculous nature of this propaganda, Ochere-Darko had to reluctantly correct the anomaly of avoiding the embarrassing fact that it was the CIA and not “the American Embassy” that was paying Danquah. I have noticed that in his more recent submissions he concedes the fact that indeed, it was the CIA and not the US Embassy that was paying the stipends to J.B. Danquah’s family:
“I have had the opportunity to read the book by Richard Mahoney, whose father was US ambassador to Ghana between 1952-65, and nowhere in that book is Danquah described as a CIA agent. In fact, the younger Mahoney, who was not older than 10 years at the material time, refers to some financial support, stipends, that were allegedly offered to Danquah’s wife and 13 dependent children by an official at the embassy, who was the CIA local agent, when Danquah was first imprisoned by Nkrumah for 11 months between February 1961 and January 1962, without the prior knowledge of his father.”
The CIA does not go about pointing out who their agents are. Thus when there is a fortuitous and concrete proof of such payments, Ghanaians have every right to interrogate it! Is Mr. Ochere-Darko also interrogating the age of the father who must have passed on the information to his son? The issue is certainly not about the age of Richard Mahoney, nor at what time his father became the US Ambassador to Ghana. The issue is whether or not the CIA was paying stipends to Danquah’s wife with his knowledge and approval? And the answer is clear!
What is even more interesting about this is the fact that Ochere-Darko behaves as if he was learning about the dubious past of Dr. J. B. Danquah for the first time! That was certainly not the first time that he was reacting to those allegations that wont go away because they are from very credible sources. On Sunday, 13 February 2011 20:13, Ochere-Darko published an article on the website of the Danquah Institute, in which he attempted to debunk what he called “smear campaign that Joseph Boakye Danquah, the ‘doyen of Ghana’ and co-founder of Ghana’s first political party, the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), was a CIA spy.”
“WHAT STARTED THE LIE? Opponents of the Danquah-Dombo-Busia political tradition in Ghana have in the last decade or so seized with glee and relish on a dubious information that came out of the book, “JFK: Ordeal in Africa”. This book, written by Richard Mahoney, son of the late William Mahoney, US Ambassador to Ghana (1962-65), in a paragraph mentions that Dr Danquah’s family, which at the time included 13 dependent children, allegedly received stipends from the American Embassy in 1961 during his first period in jail under the Preventive Detention Act. The issue was that this was done without the knowledge of the Ambassador.”
Who could have done this in the American Embassy without the knowledge of the American Ambassador, if it was not the CIA? Ochere-Darko’s attempt to edit or re-write a book in print which is still out there is a very daring act of stupidity, to borrow his own word!
Ochere-Darko deliberately chips in the number of Danquah’s dependants to give the impression that the CIA is a charity organisation! The mention of Mr. Richard Mahoney’s age of ten at the time of the incident, is also a deliberate ploy to give the impression of unreliability of the source. Ochere-Darko actually argues that “The reliability of the information in the younger Mahoney’s has certainly been interrogated. Since the author was at the material time barely 10 years old, we must assume that the information came to him much later from his father. This is because no declassified CIA records of the period contain any such reference.”
Richard Mahoney’s book was published in 1983. He was 31 years old when it was published, not a child. Richard Mahoney was an accomplished scholar in his own rights at the time of publication. He lectured as a visiting professor at Templeton College (Oxford University), The JFK School of Government (Harvard University), the Beijing Institute of Foreign Trade, and the Universidad Del Pacifico – Ecuador (Quito, Campus). He was also professor emeritus at The American Graduate School of International Management.
Wikipedia provides a short biography on Richard D. Mahoney which describes Mahoney as “the author of three books, two on the John F. Kennedy administration: JFK: Ordeal in Africa (1983) and Sons and Brothers, The days of Jack and Bobby Kennedy (1999) and Getting Away with Murder on the War in Afghanistan, as well as numerous articles and monographs on presidential history, foreign policy, international trade, and political risk. He has also published a volume of poetry in Spanish entitled Pétalos (1995).”
Ochere-Darko must look for another argument other than the age of the historian! Is he going to ask archaeologists how old they were when the events they describe in their books occurred? No wonder he is left with nothing sensible to say other than “Would you stop this stupidity? Would you stop this stupidity? Why is he so stupid? You are sitting here and accusing somebody of being a CIA agent, what sort of stupidity is that? What is this stupidity? This is stupidity…you consider a founder of Ghana as a CIA agent, what sort of stupidity is this? . ..this is pure stupidity.” “When you want us to have an intellectual programme like this, you don’t bring people like this. I am not going to apologise, I can apologise to the viewers and listeners but not him. He insults J.B. Danquah and you want me to apologise to him? …I am not going to do that. Why should I do that? … If that is what you want I will walk out on your programme, I won’t do it!”
“Also, spies, informants or double agents usually have their handlers.” Ochere-Darko argues pathetically, ” Why didn’t Danquah go to his ‘handler’ to complain but to the Ambassador who, as it turned out, knew nothing about the apparent arrangement? Or, are we not allowed to scrutinise the logicalities of claims made by so-called chroniclers of our history? Nowhere in that book or anywhere else, for that matter, has it been alleged that Danquah personally received money from any foreign power or agent.”
Danquah was in prison for eleven months before Nkrumah pardoned him. How would anyone know whether or not his “handler had been tranfered from Ghana? How could we tell if the CIA had rightly considered him as a pent force and dumped him? From the reports that Mahoney was in touch with some soldiers and police officers, thus the CIA had recruited new players and actors on their behalf, so why would they be bothred with Danquah?
As Paul Lee writes in “Documents Expose U.S. Role in Nkrumah Overthrow”, “In a reversal of what some would assume were the traditional roles of an ambassador and the CIA director, McCone asked Mahoney who would most likely succeed Nkrumah in the event of a coup.
Mahoney again correctly forecast the future: Ambassador Mahoney stated that initially, at least, a military junta would take over.” It comes out clearly that the CIA’s attention had shifted to somewhere else, and unkown to Danquah, he was no longer in the picture.
The only reason provided by Gabby Asare Ochere-Darko, Executive Director of the Danquah Institute for angrily branding Dr Omane Boamah, as being “stupid” is because Gabby sees Danquah as a “founding father of Ghana”! We shall have another occasion to go into that ridiculous claim. For now, it suffices just to ask the question whether it is that stupid to consider a man who is a known CIA asset as “a founding father” of any nation in Africa?
What someone ought to make clear to Gabby is the fact that we do not consider CIA assets as our founding fathers. Indeed, anyone qualified to be a founding father can be disqualified on the basis of being an agent for a foreign country. So you cannot argue that because Danquah is esteemed by others to be a founding father, it is wrong to accuse him of being a CIA agent. On the contrary, the reverse is true. Danquah cannot even be considered as a founding father because he was an asset of a foreign intelligence organisation.
For those of us who know a little bit of our history, the revelations by Professor Mahoney only comes to confirm what we knew already.
As Dr. Kwame Botwe-Asamoah rightly puts it, “Danquah’s detention under the PDA resulted from his involvements in coup plots in collaboration with the CIA. During the first treason trial of Awhiatey-Amponsah-Apaloo conspiracy of November 1958, after the passage of the PDA, J. B. Danquah was heard assuring a foreign diplomat that Nkrumah’s government would be overthrown in December 1958 (Bing). But the security forces did not act on it. They kept close eyes on him and other enemies of the State in order to gather hard evidence.”
“The grounds for the first detention of Danquah was submitted to him in writing that: ‘During the month of September 1961 YOU DID JOIN in a DESIGN for the subversion of the Government of Ghana PRESENTED to you at a meeting on the premises of Dr. J. B. Danquah in Accra, by ISMAILA ANNAN and ATTA BORDOH both now detained and you did ENCOURAGE this design and in furtherance of it DID ACT in a manner calculated to endanger the security of the State and to cause the overthrow of the Government of Ghana by unlawful means’” (see Danquah’s own Historic Speeches J. B. Danquah).
“Of course one should expect Danquah to craft his response like a defense attorney in order to accuse Nkrumah’s Government of unlawful detention without trial. Danquah’s claim was that the meeting was called in connection with the 1961 Takoradi Workers’ strike and the government’s budget. During this same strike, Komla Gbedemah, serving on the three-man presidential commission ruling the country, “saw his chance to seize power. Gbedemah had no problem in obtaining CIA backing for his conspiracy.” He “approached Ambassador Russell on September 6, 1961”and asked for US support; and “Washington gave an unequivocal yes.” Gbedemah and Busia went into exile together with the help of the CIA in October 1961 (see Mahoney, 1983 for details).
Now, given that Danquah, Busia, Obetsebi-Lamptey, R. R. Amponsah, Modesto Apaloo and the new comer Gbedemah were in one accord to overthrow Nkrumah’s government by violence, Danquah’s assurance given to the foreign diplomat that Nkrumah’s government would be overthrown in December 1958 and the meeting in his house in September 1961 cannot be seen as unrelated issues.”
Danquah who started his political carrier as a collaborator of the British colonial rule and a favourite, lost all the respect and support which the British transferred to Dr. Kofi Busia, must have become very useful to the CIA at that time. There were signs that he got on better with the Americans than with the British. It must be remembered that in 1954, just after losing the Parliamentary elections to his ex-wife, he took a trip, not to the UK but to the US.
The reason why the British develop a very low esteem of this individual was as a result of his deep involvement in the ritual murder of Nana Akyea Mensah, the Odikro of Apedwa. It might have also been the case on Danquah’s part, who never forgave the British when the Privy Council, the final court of appeal, “sentenced to death by hanging by the neck until they died”. It must be noted that the culprits were his own relatives, namely, Asare Apietu, Kwame Kagya, Kwaku Amoako Atta, Kwadwo Amoako, Kwasi Pipim, Opoku Ahwenee, A. E. B. Danquah and Owusu Akyem-Tenteng.
As to his motivations for being a spy, Mr. Gabriel Asare Ochere-Darko has given too many reasons for this to labour the point here. Suffice it to say that the reason why this is important is because it has implications on the loyalties of those who claim to be followers of the Danquah tradition. For instance, in arguing that President Mills must allow the Americans to establish military bases in Ghana in the wake of of President Obama’s visit to Ghana, Ochere-Darko quotes Nkrumah out of context to promote his evil Danquah-infested agenda.
One trick Ochere-Darko used which I have never forgiven was to make it look as though allowing our lands to be occupied by a foreign military power is a from of liberation! Here is what he wrote:
“Obama’s chief policy adviser assured Africans two months before the 2008 presidential race, “Barack Obama understands Africa, and understands its importance to the United States. Today, in this new century, he understands that to strengthen our common security, we must invest in our common humanity and, in this way, restore American leadership in the world.” Now is the chance for him to seek and effect the real change that will finally show the world that Africans are capable of more than managing their own affairs – but, crucially, Ghana must take up the opportunity provided by the state visit and the U.S.’s burgeoning strategic interest in us, to be the nation that demonstrates this. – Gabriel Asare Ochere-Darko, ” (Obama’s Visit – What’s In It For Us And U.S.?”, Feature Article of Monday, 25 May 2009. “The author of the article is the Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, a think tank based in Accra.”)
“Now is the chance for him to seek and effect the real change that will finally show the world that Africans are capable of more than managing their own affairs”? Does that sound familiar? It is obviously a sacrilegious reference to the Independence Eve declaration by the great Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah:
“And as I pointed out, I made it quite clear that from now on, today, we must change our attitudes, our minds! We must realize that from now on, we are no more a colonial people but a free and independent people! But also, as I pointed out, that also entails hard work!
That new African is ready to fight his own battles and show that after all, the black man is capable of managing his own affairs! We are going to demonstrate to the world, to the other nations, that we are prepared to lay our own foundation! Our own African identity!”
This is why we need to keep a close eye, not only on people like Gabriel Asare Ochere-Darko but also the man he represents, Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo. This is why it is important not to trust the destiny of this nation in hands such as these! This is why it is important to expose these agents of imperialism who think that the only way “the black man can prove to the whole world that he is capable of managing his own affairs” is by allowing a foreign military occupation of our territories!
Forward Ever! Backwards Never!!!
By Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro.