By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Even the founding-father of the so-called National Democratic Congress (NDC), the former Flt.-Lt. Jerry John Rawlings, fimrly believes that the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo won Election 2012 hands down. And so does Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, leader of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP),the Convention People’s Party (CPP) breakaway and former cabinet member of the Kufuor administration. And this clearly explains the decision by Dr. Nduom to endorse Akufo-Addo’s petition seeking to overturn the results of the 2012 presidential election as declared by the chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC).
And so does the brazenly controversial Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings, Ghana’s longtime first lady and leader of the NDC-breakaway National Democratic Party (NDP). To be certain, on the eve of Election 2012, Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings had been widly rumored to have been poised to endorsing Nana Akufo-Addo and the New Patriotic Party. And then just when Ghana’s former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice was reportedly readying himself to accept the endorsement of the leader of the 31st December Women’s Movement (DWM), a would have been strange political bedfellow, to be certain, word reached him that Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings had announced that she had absolutely no intention of endorsing the NPP flagbearer; and that actually, Mrs. Rawlings was implacably peeved that anybody would even half-presume to float such a patently bizarre idea.
In reality, though, my own well-considered take on the foregoing matter is that the NPP leadership acted rather unwisely, when it so selfishly decided not to file an amicus brief in the shameful wake of Mrs. Rawlings’ being mischievously disqualified by Dr. Afari-Gyan from contesting the 2012 presidential election, on the flagrantly dubious pretext that the former first lady had hopelessly failed to properly fill her presidential contest application forms. Needless to say, it had been obvious right from the moment that Mrs. Rawlings resigned from the NDC and established her own political party that the Electoral Commissioner and his staff were apt to making it next to impossible for the politically quite formidable Mrs. Rawlings to contest Election 2012, obviously because she clearly stood a prime chance of siphoning a remarkable percentage of votes from the then-Candidate Mahama, which could well make up the margin of victory between Messrs. Akufo-Addo and Dramani Mahama.
Nobody knows more about the electoral game plan in Ghana’s Fourth-Republican dispensation than Mr. Rawlings, which is why the latter’s eleventh-hour decision to confer with Nana Akufo-Addo, in order to allegedly seek reassurance from the latter that the key operatives of a presumaby vanquished NDC would be afforded a fair shake in an Akufo-Addo-constituted government. And in the wake of the glaringly fraudulent declaration of Election 2012 for Mr. John Mahama, the longtime Ghanaian strongman and two-term democratically elected premier, to the predictable ire of his former minions, would call for a prompt investigation into the conduct of last December’s general election. His former minions and proteges would even go to the extent of threatening to strip their otherwise passionately beloved patriarch of his title of National Democratic Congress’ founding father.
Dr. Afari-Gyan insists that Nana Akufo-Addo lost Election 2012 by a margin of 3-percentage points to President Mahama, although the Electoral Commissioner cannot tell precisely what number of Ghanaians resident abroad were allowed to vote and have the same counted towards the final results of Election 2012. Dr. Afari-Gyan also claims that every single eligible Ghanaian voter voted via the biometric voting machines which were being used for the first time in the 2012 election. The latter assertion, however, clearly contradicts public pronouncements made by President Mahama during the heated course of the electoral process.
What is clear here, though, is that many of the detractors of the NPP leader predicate their pet aversion and/or inveterate animosity for the man on the grounds of his widely purported arrogance, rather than the fact of whether he is qualified to lead the country to the salutary and targeted status of a middle-income economy. But that Ghanaians are largely a curiously diffident and inferiority-complex afflicted people can hardly be gainsaid. And it is the latter reason why the dubious concept of “humility” has become a grand and central electioneering campaign plank. In other words, the watchword for a successful Ghanaian presidential victory is aparently a studied self-hating dumbness, else how could anybody explain Mr. Mahama’s government’s decision to allow 1.5 tons of gold bars, valued at $ 80 million-plus, to leave the shores of the country enroute to the medieval theocracy of Iran, without the payment of one pesewa to the Ghana Customs and Excise department at the Kotoka International Airport?
And this is the government that all patriotic and well-meaning Ghanaians are supposed to be proud of!
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Department of English
Nassau Community College of SUNY
Garden City, New York