On The Question Of Relevance
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Gleaning from the various press reports from the battle-front of the Akufo-Addo Revolution, one gets the quite edifying impression that not much headway is being made by the three respondents’ vigorous attempts at ensuring that their paymaster, Mr. John Dramani Mahama, would be left standing by the time that all the facts are in and the Atuguba Court begins to deliberate on the same with the primary objective of delivering a decision and/or verdict that would be squarely predicated on what transpired in Election 2012 (See “Addison Spars With Atuguba In Court; Gloria Akuffo Defends Bawumia” MyJoyOnline.com/Ghanaweb.com 5/15/13; “Election Petition: ‘Sit Down!’ – Atuguba Orders Addison In Open Court” Radioxyzonline.com/Ghanaweb.com 5/15/13; “Election Petition: Atuguba Warns Addison” 5/22/13).
If, indeed, Mr. Philip Addison, counsel for the petitioners in the Akufo-Addo Revolution, has been having a hard time with the presiding judge, Mr. William Atuguba, it is largely because the latter clearly appears to be more interested in the damning sideshows of the counsel for the three respondents than the admittedly raw and boring substance of forensic evidence presented by both sides of the case to the court.
A striking case in point, vis-a-vis Justice Atuguba’s apparent obsession with sideshows regards whether the General-Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr. Kwadwo Owusu-Afriyie, had, indeed, prematurely ordered party supporters, sympathizers and faithfuls to deck white apparels and swamp churches and city and municipal streets in flamboyant celebration of an Akufo-Addo presidential victory and an NPP landslide electoral knockout when Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, the Electoral Commissioner, had yet to officially declare the presidential winner of Election 2012.
Justice Atuguba clearly finds such obviously extraneous line of questioning by Mr. Tsatsu “The Thief” Tsikata, counsel for the third respondent or the National Democratic Congress (NDC), to be relevant and, in fact, central and critical to the humongous corpus of the forensic evidence, while Mr. Addison vehemently begs to dissent.
The fact of the matter, of course, is that unless Justice Atuguba is capriciously intent on punishing the petitioners for the clearly abject naivety and “youthful” exuberance of General-Secretary Owusu-Afriyie, there is absolutely no good reason for Mr. Atuguba to have so inordinately indulged Mr. Tsikata’s patently rambunctious ego trip with this aspect of Election 2012, which indisputably had no palpable bearing, whatsoever, on the pink-sheet evidence gathered by the petitioners in support of their suit vehemently seeking to invalidate the presidency of Mr. John Dramani Mahama.
I also sincerely believe that Justice Atuguba may be having a hard time coming to terms with the fact that as an astute scholar and a first-rate intellectual, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia is not expected to comfortably provide portmanteau answers to questions that may be obviously aimed by Mr. Tsikata at facilely and cheaply boxing the former Deputy-Governor of the Bank of Ghana into a corner for the kill.
You see, one does not need an advanced college, or university, degree to fully appreciate the fact that Dr. Bawumia is a remarkable wit of inimitable finesse, whereas Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, for one striking case in point, is a decidedly rustic comedian of equally inimitable deft.
What the foregoing simply means is that Dr. Bawumia is apt to remarkably tax the cranial capacity and cognitive faculties of the Atuguba panel, whereas the obnoxiously garrulous General Mosquito is only apt to regaling the court with the requisite comic relief, in Shakespearean parlance, of course. Needless to say, the desired receptive pose lies somewhere in-between the two temperamental extremes.
In the end, though, the kind of “Truth” that Justice Atuguba claims to be the sole and overriding objective of the court is more consanguineous with Dr. Bawumia than it is with either Mr. Asiedu-Nketia or Mr. Tsatsu “The Thief” Tsikata. Indeed, rather than standing accused of being pathologically political, Dr. Bawumia is actually refreshingly and constructively philosophical. I hope Justice Atuguba fully recognizes this immutable “Truth.”
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Department of English
Nassau Community College of SUNY
Garden City, New York