By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
Give it to him!…. I am talking about Alan-the-Quitman, of course. You may not like my distant cousin, but you cannot begrudge him his great “Fante” sense of humor(tongue-in-cheek, of course). By now it ought to be clear to party delegates, supporters and sympathizers that Mr. Kyerematen is not afraid to add the moniker of “In-Your-Face,” as my two boys are wont to say, to “Brazen Liar.”
The fact of the matter is that with the Cash Man, one no longer knows what to believe. Well, now the “Handsome Giant” claims that he spent the whole of the 2008 electioneering campaign season touring the length and breadth of the country with, you guessed right, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the short man with the big head and big thoughts who so royally trounced Mr. Handsome-the-Giant in the New Patriotic Party’s presidential primary, held on the sprawling campus of the country’s flagship academy, the University of Ghana.
As I vividly recall, Mr. Kyerematen was widely reported to have tendered his resignation to the then-NPP National Chairman, Mr. Mac Manu, rascally citing the lurid and decidedly idiotic taunting and intimidation of his supporters and sympathizers by Akufo-Addo backers. If, indeed, ‘Kufo-Addo supporters had spent nearly every single day of the first-quarter – or three months – of 2008 systematically antagonizing and intimidating Kyerematen partisans, as the latter then claimed, then, of course, it stands to reason to assume that Alan Cash, as Mr. Kyerematen is popularly known, could not have been “vigorously” campaigning for his arch-political rival for most of that year.
This is because the man officially resigned from the New Patriotic Party on April 18, 2008 or thereabouts. What is more, at least the next three or four months would be spent by party leaders, not on the campaign trail, but frenetically trying to resolve whatever grievances, real or imagined, that the 2007 presidential primary runner-up deemed to be militating against his unfettered participation in the Akufo-Addo presidential campaign.
In 2010 when he, once again, lost his presidential candidate’s bid to Nana Akufo-Addo, Mr. Kyerematen decided to tactically disengage himself from mainstream party activities by securing a plum job in Addis-Ababa, the Ethiopian capital, as Trade Advisor to the UN-sponsored Economic Commission for Africa. In the latter capacity, Mr. Kyerematen macro-managed trade policy for the entire continent.
And so, perhaps, what he ought to be talking about right now is precisely how his service at the ECA redounded to the good electoral fortunes of the New Patriotic Party, since Mr. Kyerematen also used his ECA position to servilely lobby President John Dramani Mahama for the latter’s official endorsement of Mr. Kyerematen’s ill-fated candidacy for the Secretary-General’s job at the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Now, we don’t know precisely what he told Mr. Mahama in order to secure the latter’s endorsement for his WTO job contest. One thing, though, is certain: in the highly unlikely event of him winning the NPP presidential nomination, a politically desperate President Mahama, who is likely to seek reelection, cannot be counted upon to muff up, or keep close to his vest, as it were, whatever publicly unsavory conversation might have transpired between the two men. And when the latter happens, the party’s chances of regaining the Flagstaff House would be irreparably doomed.
It also does not help the cause of Mr. Kyerematen’s rather rascally claim that it was out of sheer goodwill that he declined to run off against Nana Akufo-Addo in the party’s 2007 presidential primary, when the latter slightly fell short of garnering the constitutionally stipulated 50%+1 delegate votes necessary to effectively clinch the party’s nomination. It does not help Mr. Kyerematen’s cause because barely four months later, he would selfishly abandon the party in chimerical – or fake – protest of purported intimidation by Akufo-Addo and his supporters and sympathizers.
Ultimately, what concerned observers would like to know is whether, indeed, Mr. Kyerematen fully served out his decently salaried tenure in the Ethiopian capital, as the ECA’s trade advisor, before sprinting off to contest the WTO Secretary-General’s job. In other words, is Alan for real, as New Yorkers are wont to say, or is he just a mere political pimp, a brazen opportunist, or simply the latest joke in town?