This is how to sell the NDC to the voters

By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Folks, we have already made it clear that the electioneering campaign efforts of the NDC and the Mahama-led administration should be focused on reality and not phantoms or ill-considered political bad-mouthing of opponents.

What the NDC stands for is clear; so also is the record of positive accomplishments of President Mahama that should be touted loud and clear. No need for useless arguments and exchange of insults that will do the NDC any good. That explains why those seeking to sell the NDC and President Mahama must re-direct their resources to better purposes and objectives.

A good thing sells itself, as the saying goes. Once the short-term and long-term needs of the people are being satisfied in one way or the other, the indications are strong enough for them to know that retaining President Mahama in office will spell weal, not woe; good, not bad. Ghana is not in tatters under Mahama, the challenges notwithstanding. If it were, how could development projects continue to spring up where least expected? The beneficiaries should know better and reject the vile propaganda by those who have no stated positive achievement in public office. Whatever they might have gained in private life remains their private benefit.

Boil it down to the NPP’s flagbearer or the PPP’s Dr. Nduom. How does an Akufo-Addo’s 40-year-loong legal practice profit Ghana while his public office as an MP and Minister of State dimmed the light on development? Dr. P.K. Nduom of the PPP has already shed light on Akufo-Addo’s ineptitude as a Cabinet Minister under Kufuor; and the 12 useless years he spent as the MP for the Abuakwa area attest to other aspects of his inadequacies. Being naked (and probably not being ashamed of it), how can he be believed when he says that he will clothe others? What value has he added to himself to warrant his morbid quest for the Presidency? If you can’t put one-and-tone together to get two, how can you do so with millions?

Those like him mounting rooftops to condemn President Mahama just because they know how to use sophistry or how to adroitly play on the emotions of the people will come to realize their folly when the dust settles. But the NDC must play into their hands. It must outwit them through better means of political mobilization.

Indeed, it is clear that complaints about hardships (that have dominated public reaction to areas visited by Akufo-Addo and seemed to be the basis for those complainants’ wanting to vote against President Mahama) are being driven by ignorance or mere pettiness. Life has always been hard in Ghana. No one deceiving himself/herself that putting Akufo-Addo in office will eliminate the hardships should be believed. Such a person is lost.

A government that lays the foundation in terms of infrastructure to prepare the ground for a better future should be encouraged and supported. How can we talk about job creation without the solid infrastructural base? How can we talk about national development and economic growth without first establishing the basis for it?

Having weighed some of the anti-Mahama elements’ claims that Kufuor established such social interventionist programmes as NHIS, NYEP, Schools Feeding Programme, etc. that are being sustained in the Mahama era, I am left in no doubt that the critics don’t really know what is at stake.

All these programmes that Kufuor introduced lacked foundation because they were more dependent on foreign support than any local input to sustain them. Thus, when the foreign donor support evaporated, they were bound to collapse. When the Danish government withdrew support for the Schools feeding Programme, it couldn’t survive because there was no room for any local input to keep it alive. In effect, I am saying that all those measures by Kufuor were cosmetic. A country cannot develop on such cosmetic measures.

The NDC’s teams of campaigners need to re-frame their strategies for public information dissemination and to concentrate on serious thought-provoking areas to open the eyes of the electorate. They haven’t so far succeeded. As to why, I don’t know. It seems to me that they are wasting their energy, taking on the NPP in its own comfort zone of rogue politics and wasting valuable time and resources as such. Better to do otherwise, folks!!

Go to the people to re-direct their attention to what has been given or will be given them. Let them relate to reality in front of them and pooh-pooh the “huhudious” promises being made by a desperate and worn-out Akufo-Addo who has nothing concrete to recommend him except his kind of rogue politics, a clear example of which is his attacking President Mahama as the cause of Ghana’s problems. How despicable!!

It is imperative to highlight what has been accomplished, especially in many parts of the country that have lacked the facilities now available to them. All these facilities are dotted across the country to be focused on.

It is also important for anybody seeking to do politics for the NDC and President Mahama to underscore the fact that the government cannot solve all existential problems in a spate of 4 or 5 years. Anybody thinking otherwise, which is the main substance propelling the negative politics of the NPP, is simply being mischievous and should be unnerved with reality as facts and evidence-based materials are provided to undercut their rogue politics.

I expect the NDC machine to move the campaign a notch higher by focusing on the accomplishments. All the developments projects given the people stand tall and should be used as the basis for any claim on how the government is laying the foundation for a “Better Ghana”.

The point must be made that the government cannot solve all problems at a go. What it has chosen to do in this first term is foundational. Much will be built on it to improve standards of living and open up opportunities to solve problems that its detractors are highlighting as an instance of its incompetence.

The hardships that people are complaining about can be tackled only after the foundation/platform has been laid. With all the projects so far provided, isn’t it clear that other measures to be taken in future will bed aimed at creating jobs and putting the citizens in a good stead to enjoy better living standards? That’s the message to broadcast near, far, and wide.

On that score, I am more than happy at what has issued forth from the Ho area, as reported here: http://www.myjoyonline.com/politics/2016/August-15th/residents-march-in-appreciation-of-mahamas-development-agenda.php.

Others elsewhere must follow suit and get the message of HOPE across to the people. No one should fall for the “Kwaku Ananse” tricks that the NPP and its Akufo-Addo are propagating. Interestingly, Akufo-Addo hasn’t told us how he will solve the energy crisis to provide the impetus for all the “huhudious” promises that he is gushing out. The NDC’s campaign team must seize the opportunity to focus the people’s attention on what has been accomplished. Those who have eyes will see what is in front of them and behave accordingly when they enter the polling booth; those who have eyes but can’t see will do otherwise. Not my cup of tea. It is theirs to drink from.

Certainly, the people will get to know that we can only build our future on the lessons taught us by our past and what the government of the day has done in the present to lay the foundation for take-off into that future. Over to you, lovers of the NDC!!

I shall return…

  • E-mail: mjbokor@yahoo.com
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