In what capacity are Afoko and Agyepong acting now? (Part I)

By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Folks, let’s be blunt to say upfront that happenings in the NPP regarding the status of Paul Afoko (National Chairman) and Kwabena Agyei Agyepong (General Secretary) give us a comedy of errors to fear and not enjoy. Here are two high-ranking party administrators declared as “enemies” and chased out of office; yet, they are still doing things and making public statements being followed by the party’s functionaries without question. The NPP is grinding to a point of disrepute.

The rumpus rocking it, caused by agitations against Afoko and Agyepong and their continued stay in office, portrays an ambivalent picture of the entire NPP setup. It is a litmus test that the leaders of the NPP, the Akufo-Addo camp instigating the agitations, and the unwitting elements being used against Afoko and Agyepong have woefully failed. And it portrays the NPP as a laughable political entity to be watched lest it plunges the country into chaos if put in office. In politics, ambivalence portends danger!!

Afoko and Agyepong are still at post. Despite all the machinations against them, culminating in their being stained as the masterminds behind the acid-bathing of Alhaji Adam Mahama and consequently declared as “persona non grata” unfit to administer the affairs of the NPP, their being physically debarred from entering their offices at the NPP’s national headquarters to perform their legitimate duties, and their being ostracized, Afoko and Agyepong are still standing tall in the workings of the NPP. By digging in and refusing to resign as demanded by their detractors, they have proved that they are no putty at all to be cajoled into submission. They have stood their grounds and are standing tall to make statements that no one in the NPP has dared to counteract.

Kwabena Agyei gave instructions on how the recent primaries to choose Parliamentary candidates should be conducted and followed up to issue a stern warning to defeated aspirants, poking them in the eye that any among them who chose to go independent would be dismissed from the NPP. None of those butting heads with him and Afoko has reacted to his authoritative moves as the General Secretary of the NPP.

He has also said that the 4% rise in the prices of petroleum products is a confirmation (to him) of the Mahama-led administration’s incompetence. I dismiss this utterance as balderdash aimed at regaining lost grounds in the NPP camp. This kind of statement is characteristic of rogue politicians. No more. But he chose this moment to spring back and be accepted as the substantive General Secretary of the NPP. On the other hand, Paul Afoko hasn’t been so loquacious; but he still stands tall as the party’s National Chairman. On the flip side, all those bad-mouthing them and calling for their heads have recoiled into their shells.

The National Executive Committee of the NPP, the Council of Elders, the NPP MPs, National Officers, Regional Chairmen, Constituency Executives, and ordinary members haven’t had the audacity to question Agyepong on why he is still upholding himself as the General Secretary of the party and performing functions that he might have been regarded as divested of. The ambivalence is thick.

Have Agyepong and Afoko been re-admitted into confidence to perform their functions? Have they been cowed into submission after the “baptism of fire” so they will work assiduously for Akufo-Addo? Or have their detractors lost the fight, after all? The ambivalence is really puzzling.

Against this background, I want to analyze happenings in the NPP regarding the recent uproar and series of physical actions against Afoko and Agyepong that have portrayed them as undesirables; but that has also reflected negatively on the NPP itself as a divided front. Such a broken home is not fit to rule Ghana, one might claim. I want to use the rumpus concerning Afoko and Agyepong to question the problem-solving abilities of the NPP’s leaders, seeking to prove that they are better at crying wolf and damaging their own political interests than their political opponents can ever do. The fault is within the NPP and its own leaders. I premise my analysis on two questions: What is the status of Afoko and Agyepong in the NPP today? What authority do they have to continue doing and saying things in the name of the party after all that has been done to deflate them and make them unattractive as administrators charged with mobilizing forces to put Akufo-Addo in power at Election 2016?

Here is the context for my analysis. The machinations leading to the declaration of Afoko and Agyepong as dangerous to the Akufo-Addo agenda began many years ago when they were perceived as working against the interest of William Nana Addo Danquah (Dankwa) Akufo-Addo, the party’s third-time flagbearer. Without even providing any evidence to substantiate the allegations against Afoko and Agyepong, their detractors—easily identifiable as Akufo-Addo’s lackeys—did many things and splashed much mud to soil their public image.

I shall return…

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