By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor
Friday, July 15, 2016
Folks, I have read news reports quoting the Asantehene (Otumfuo Osei Tutu II) as admitting that the NPP was “birthed” in the Ashanti Region and that his uncle (name not mentioned) gave life to it by donating 700,000 Pounds to get it going. (See http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/Akufo-Addo-was-my-personal-lawyer-Asantehene-455383).
In political terms, it doesn’t really matter where a political party was born. What matters is whether it can stretch itself beyond its birthplace to capture the national circumference and gain support to win political power. The outcome of Elections 1992, 2000 (and the runoff), 2008, and 2012 prove that the NPP is hamstrung in this bid.
Ex-President Kufuor prevailed in the 2000 run-off because of the support given him by the mushroom parties, which shied away from Akufo-Addo in 2008 and 2012 to doom him. Whatever Election 2004 fetched him belongs to history but can be questioned within the context of the outcome of successive elections. History at its best here.
The truth is that unlike the NDC, the NPP cannot go it alone. All the noise being made now will end in smoke when reality dawns.
I have no doubt that the Asantehene knew the implications of his utterances, having already revealed what had transpired between him and Akufo-Addo (someone he claimed to be his personal lawyer who had over the years given him legal services gratis before turning himself into a politician seeking support from just anywhere to become Ghana’s President ‘;at all costs”).
We aren’t bothered at all about this utterance by the Asantehene; but we wonder what he meant by saying that “I want development for my people. If you win let us see the schools, industries, roads, hospitals and the many others, that’s all I want to see for my people as a king.”
Of course, before Election 2008, this same Asantehene had told Akufo-Addo during a similar interaction at the Manhyia Palace that he (the Asantehene) and Akufo-Addo belonged to the Oyoko clan and that where he (the Asantehene) moved politically, all the Oyoko family members (invariably, all Asantes) would go, meaning that he had endorsed Akufo-Addo and that he would be supported as such to win the elections. What happened?
Then, for Election 2012, the Asantehene didn’t brazenly go that same way, even if undercurrents still existed. When Akufo-Addo was rejected, he led a campaign to petition the Asantehene to fight his cause. We spoke in depth about that desperate move, wondering whether the NPP was seeking refuge in the Asantehene as the Godfather of the Danquah-Busia cause or as the modern-day protector of the NLM political culture. (Please, read my opinion pieces entitled “Is the NPP Asante, and the Asante truly NPP?”: http://www.modernghana.com/news/437056/is-the-npp-really-asante-and-asante-truly-npp.html).
Or the one questioning why Akufo-Addo and his team would want to rely on the Asantehene to push them into power by means other than the ballot box, even before proceeding to the Supreme Court with their useless petition (“Why is the NPP seeking refuge in the Asantehene?” at http://www.modernghana.com/news/436110/why-is-the-npp-seeking-refuge-in-the-asantehene.html).
In their tribally motivated reaction to my opinions a group of so-called scholars of Asante extraction sent threatening messages to me, which I stood up to. I haven’t heard from them ever since, even though they are all over the place touting the NPP’s credentials as if it is the political Messiah to redeem Ghana. Such characters!!
Folks, in many instances, I have exposed the NPP as steeped in the political culture traceable to the National Liberation Movement and the obnoxious “Mate me Ho” scourge that has translated into the modern parlance of “All-died-be-die” or “making Ghana ungovernable for President Mahama”. They may not be drifting toward bomb-throwing, but they have to be closely watched as such!!
The long and short of it all is that the NPP was originated, incubated, and nurtured in Kumasi in 1991, using the cover of the Danquah Busia Club (DBC) formed by the late Editor of the Asante Pioneer newspaper (Atakorah-Gyimah of Nkukuo Buoho, near Offinso) with the active support of the Asante hegemonists parading themselves as intellectuals,. professionals, and chiefs. I did everything among them and have everything to cut them to size if they dare me.
I want the Methodist Man-of-God, the senile Samuel Asante-Antwi, who was then in charge of the Methodist Circuit in Adum, Kumasi, and the retired Catholic Bishop of the Kumasi Diocese (Akwasi Sarpong, a native of Offinso who hated Rawlings for asking Ghanaians not to respect him—a conman in cassock with a long chain around his neck!!) to lead the campaign to dare me so i can expose their political mischief under the guise of religion. If they doubt it, let them refresh their memories on why the late former ardent Rawlings critic (lawyer Obeng Manu) would turn round to extol Rawlings as a proper leader in whose government he would serve if given any appointment. Folks, I am full of it now.
We know that all the noise coming from the Asantehene and those NPP Godfathers have their own ramifications, but we are not perturbed as long as we can situate that noise within its proper historical context and form relevant opinions on how to vote at Election 2016).
Isn’t it more than irritating for the Asantehene to be asking for development projects from an Akufo-Addo government, having already been given much by the Mahama-led administration? In retrospect, what has he done with the millions of Dollars that the Kufuor government helped him get from the World Bank?
Folks, let me cut everything short here to say that it the main reason for supporting Akufo-Addo is that a government led by him will provide development projects, we could as well just go to bed and sleep soundly. The undeniable evidence in front of our eyes is that the Lion of Gonja (John Dramani Mahama) has already taken up the challenge by providing such projects to change lives and transform Ghana for its own good. Do these chiefs not see what is happening around them?
If it has to do with the hardships facing the people as a result of the government’s over-concentration of attention on development projects, imposition of taxes and other measures to maximize revenue for the state, we may have something to advise President Mahama on. But anything else is moot.
Let the Asantehene tell us something more enlightening so we can use it to improve public discourse on Ghana’s development challenges. So far, what has come from him is stale and unbecoming. Here is someone who has cautioned his subordinate chiefs against indulging in partisan politics is finding it difficult to behave as such. The future remains unknown to us all. In truth, November 7 or December 7 is not far off.
I shall return…
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