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Feature Article of Sunday, 10 October 2010

Columnist: Damoa & Antwi

Tribalism in Politics is a Menace Tearing Ghana Apart

Since Rawlings usurped power from Dr Limann’s elected government in 1981 to form his Neo-Nazi PNDC, tribalism has all of a sudden taken hold of Ghanaian society, setting Ewes especially against Ashantis particularly and Akans generally all the time. Since then, Rawlings by way of patching-up with Northerners for denying them the great opportunity for a Northerner to be Ghana’s President, Mr Rawlings has rather succeeded in inciting and annexing the people of Northern Ghana to his instituted morbid hatred for Ashantis and Akans to form a kind of Ewe-Northern-Ga alliance against Ashantis and Akans in general.
Rawlings and Ewes’ major grievance is that in the second republican era, the Progress Party did not make anybody from the Volta Region a Cabinet Minister, woefully ignoring the fact that the constitution of the second republic, a Westminster prototype provided for Cabinet Ministers to be Members of Parliament. Unfortunately the progress Party won only two seats in the Region out of which no Cabinet Minister could emerge in the highly competitive Cabinet positions available at that time. Not every MP became a Cabinet Minister by virtue of being MP. Several MPs out of the 105 the Progress Party seats won from all the Regions across Ghana were back-benchers including those two from the Volta Region. Out of this issue, pro-secessionist Prof Kofi Awonor has continually campaigned for Ewes separation from Ghana for reasons and would-be achievements best known to Awonor, Rawlings and their mafia revolutionary group.
Secondly, Rawlings and Ewes especially claim that Ashantis and Akans have amassed all of Ghana’s wealth and subjected their hegemony over all tribes most especially with their language. In furtherance to the above they claim Ashantis look upon Northerners as non-citizens who do not deserve to hold any of the high offices in Ghana, yet here is Rawlings who ousted a Northerner-President from the highest office of the land to achieve his personal desires by committing crimen laesae majestatis on the Limman-led PNP administration.
It is no secret to state that having succeeded in dragging the glory of Northerners in mud, the best Rawlings could do to appease them was to play on their minds and intelligence in his more suo demagoguery as a means to an end which he has sought to achieve for a particular purpose. Rawlings has ever since and continually found delight in attaching and tapping a nuisance value to the annexed Northerners to his morbid instincts and agenda. Rawlings has succeeded in carving out a militant hit-man group, Azorka boys from Tamale as a wing of the NDC to form a notorious lager louts miscreants for causing riots and anarchy especially during elections and some other ad hoc tasks as may be determined. This is a prime example of the nuisance value Rawlings deems suitable for his compatriotic alliance with Northerners against Akans whiles such lawless group has not been formed in the Volta Region. With these versions of claims conceived in the mind of Rawlings, Ewes and Northerners and indeed of like minds it is rather unfortunate that Northerners have not yet discerned what their “messiah” takes them for. This conceptual sentiments in Rawlings and his mafia invariably calls for an analysis into the concept of citizenship in the context of Ghana
The word ‘citizen’, like ‘comrade’ has been and still is a revolutionary word. Both words have not only been titles that have been proudly adopted by men to mark their liberation from tyranny and despotism, they are still used by those who feel not yet to have gained admission to the fraternity of the free and equal. Whereas no such division has ever existed in Ghana whereby a particular tribe or clan has been socio-politically or socio-economically denied active participation in governance or fair share of the national cake, Rawlings has made revolutionary tribal distinctions a prominent order of the day to the extent of having made several attempts to alter Ghana’s socio-political history from its primordial status quo by employing chorizonts like Nana Bobie in London UK to rewrite and change Ghana’s history
The rank and status of citizenship first appeared in the ancient world with the beginning of constitutional rule in the city states of Greece. The Greeks set themselves apart from the Barbarians who had not yet been fully annexed into full Greek citizenship and had limited juridical rights to redress supposed injustices. The Barbarians therefore usually resorted to rebellions as a means to fight for their limited apportioned rights. Rebellions, passivity and nihilism have always been the characteristic elements of supposed denizens who though proudly claim citizenship of a country with paranoia. In the Ghana context, no such thing has ever existed so where from this paranoia generated in Rawlings and his cohorts to warrant need for tribal and citizen identity among Ghanaians within our own boarders by fanning tribal flames to divide Ghana? Though Ewes constitute only 8% of Ghana’s population, most strategic juicy positions of officialdom in the Mills-led NDC administration are held by Ewes alone; Northerners come next with only the subsecives not as preferred favourites in the sense of equiparation but only as expletives.
Some Ghanaians have adopted an attitude akin to the sort of evil may occur passiveness of invading freeloaders to whom if the country prospers they enjoy it but if it fails and collapses they quickly opt out without any obligation, hence they have no inner instinctive well-wishing for Ghana, best to be described as denizens. It can be said on authority that Rawlings has never sincerely loved Ghana at heart; his false pretensions are manifest make-up for purposes of exploitation and to live off the fat of Ghana. To this day, Rawlings wants to live and rely on regular and incessant State subventions for the rest of his life irrespective of millions of US Dollars he has to his credit in his various allonymous bank accounts. No matter where anybody comes from in Ghana, we are all Ghanaians with equal citizen’s rights, appreciable depending on what anybody can contribute positively but not destructively for personal ends. We must all decry anybody who depends on State for subsistence.
Unlike the American, British, German Swedish etc mostly people of the Western developed world have positive ethos, truthfulness, unfeigned but realistic sincerity towards their country as people who crave for their national prosperity. Ghanaian attitude to national issues as true and loving nationals appear to be very questionable and confusing, edging on passive tribal and selfish instincts. Ghana belongs to all Ghanaians within our boarders irrespective of tribe, clan etc. Before we get too comfortable with such divisive hostile labels as Ashantis, Fantis, Ewes, Gas, Dagombas, Northerners and Southerners, let us all try to be Ghanaians first and see if our lives in this country won’t be made a lot easier through unity and co-operation, as opposed to rivalry and sinister antagonism.

Adreba Kwaku Abrefa Damoa & Peter Antwi
London UK

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