By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
I don’t know his professional background, but it is almost certain that Mr. Freddie Blay has little or absolutely no expertise in the dynamics of the global legal and security industry. Yes, get this from me, Uncle Freddie, the entire super-structure of the global legal and security apparatuses are a vast industrial complex whose workings far transcend what ordinarily meets the eye. In practical terms, the legal system is often not exactly synonymous with justice; there is also the inescapably political aspect to the law, especially where disparate national interests and historic ties and loyalties are concerned. And the Nayele Scandal, or Nayelegate, may be aptly envisaged to squarely fall somewhere in-between.
And this is why the First Vice-Chairman of the main opposition New Patriotic Party’s call for Ms. Nayele Ametefe (aka Ruby Adu-Gyamfi) to disclose – or call out – the names of the barons and kingpins behind her cocaine-trafficking career reeks of the risibly quaint and downright naive (See “Jailed Nayele Must Reveal Names of Accomplices – NPP” Starrfmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 1/6/15). It does because Ms. Ametefe’s piddling 8-year prison sentence for trafficking 12.5kgs of commercial-grade cocaine into Heathrow Airport, unmistakably underscores the fact that she very well may have creditably acquitted herself as a credible source of information regarding her allegedly big-time sponsors in Ghana, Nigeria and elsewhere within the West African sub-region. Which is also why Ms. Ametefe specially pleaded for the Crown judge to have her deported to Austria, upon serving her prison sentence, so that her own personal safety and that of her three children could be guaranteed.
As of this writing, yours truly had even learned that Ms. Ametefe, who was arrested at London’s Heathrow Airport on Nov. 10, 2014, was likely to serve a mere two-thirds of her 8-year prison sentence. The latter works out to approximately 5 years and 9 months (See “Nayele Entitled to One-Third of Her Sentence – Ex-Crown Prosecutor” Starrfmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 1/7/15). If this is not an “epic” bargain for the monetary worth of the contraband involved in the crime, then, needless to say, I don’t know what else is. We also don’t know what high-level behind-the-scenes conversations have taken place, and are still ongoing, between Ghana’s movers-and-shakers and their British counterparts, both at home and abroad.
We must also quickly point out that since the Nayele Scandal broke, there has been a phenomenal rise in the arrest of illegal-drug traffickers at Ghana’s busiest gateway, the Kotoka International Airport (KIA). The Crown authorities may, at long last, be having their Yuletide wish and the glorious fulfillment of their New Year’s dream. Needless to say, small- and middle-level (actually I wanted to say small-time and medium-time) Ghanaian politicians like Mr. Blay may still be in Stygian darkness about the identities of the powerful sponsors of Nayele Ametefe and her Super-Super Leaguers, but definitely not the prime movers and shakers at 10 Downing Street, Green Hill and the smooth and shameless operators of the VVIP-Lounge at KIA, trust me.
At any rate, as ironic as Ms. Ametefe’s pretex for not revealing the identities of her sponsors may seem – for the principal does not appear to have taken the deleterious impact of cocaine use and abuse on the children and youths of the European Community countries into account – it is perfectly legitimate for her to want to prioritize the safety of her own children over and above her own need and love of freedom. As for Mr. Blay’s talk about the need for “purifying” the image of Ghana by forcing Ms. Ametefe to disclose the name of her sponsors, that is simply too laughable to merit any serious discussion.
Ghana lost its innocence, for whatever that may be worth, decades ago. And, at this juncture, it doesn’t really matter who opened Pandora’s Box. The proverbial Brave New World is already here with us, and it is highly unlikely for anybody to expect that it would be receding anytime soon.