Feature Article of Friday, 16 November 2012
Columnist: Mensah, Nana Akyea
Part One, By Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro.
It is fitting and proper that Ghanaians want to know about the character and the integrity of any individual who offers himself for public office. Truth telling is fundamental in establishing trust. Massaging the details of one's past and telling lies by omission or commission erodes such a trust. It is for this reason that the issue of whether or not the NPP Presidential candidate, Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo's silence over his stint at Oxford University raises many an eye brow. I am writing this piece to call on Nana Akufo-Addo to come clean with Ghanaians and do the right thing by spilling the beans in order to urgently restore his own credibility.
I just read an interesting article by a conscientious Ghanaian who is also non-partisan, which brings into a sharp focus as to why Akufo-Addo has remained dead silence on his stint at Oxford University in the 1962/63 academic year. If Nana Akufo-Addo was betting on his ability to cover up such a juicy story in this information age, he better think again, and plan an appropriate damage control. An authoritative feature article by Mr. Kofi Ata, published 11 November 2012, has the title: “Why has Nana Akufo Addo omitted Oxford University from his Profile?”
“I can confirm on authority that, I submitted Freedom of Information Request (FOI) to Oxford University in January 2012 asking the university to confirm if Mr William Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo also known as Nana Akufo Addo was a student at the university. The university in a reply dated 27 January 2012 (Ref. FOI/2012/Jan), stated as follows: 'We have searched our records and the only published information that falls within the scope of your request is that Mr William Addo Dankwa AKUFO-ADDO was a member of the University (and of New College) during the 1962/63 academic year'.” [Why has Nana Akufo Addo omitted Oxford University from his Profile? - ModernGhana.com http://www.modernghana.com/news/429126/1/why-has-nana-akufo-addo-omitted-oxford-university-.html]
Even though it has been an open secret that Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo did set his feet at Oxford as a student, the NPP has been adamant that Nana never went to Oxford. Mr. Ata checked with Oxford to find out the truth when Kabila categorically denied that Akufo-Addo had ever set foot at Oxford:
“He revealed that Nana Akufo-Addo was never a student at Oxford University as it is being alleged. 'For a fact Nana Addo never went to Oxford; he never got admission or applied to go to Oxford. It is his father who went to Oxford'. Kabila as Bomfe is popularly called, said that the NPP flag-bearer has refused to comment on the issue because he (Nana) is treating it with the contempt it deserves.” [Where is Nana Addo’s Oxford University record? Felix Kwakye quizzes | Ghanamma.com http://www.ghanamma.com/2011/12/where-is-nana-addos-oxford-university-record-felix-kwakye-quizzes/]
By the time of the IEA debate, Mr. Kofi Ata had been fully informed by the University that, yes, indeed, Akufo-Addo was enrolled at Oxford University “and of New College) during the 1962/63 academic year”. It must have come as a big surprise and quite curious that Akufo-Addo virtually mentioned all the schools he attended, including Primary school, but omitted his enrolment at Oxford University. Now, why would he want to hide that? Is he ashamed of the University? What is wrong with being at Oxford for a almost one academic year?
Akufo-Addo has carefully doctored all his records to toe a certain line. They all exclude mentioning his days in Oxford. Even Wikipedia stands unchallenged! I urge Mr. Ata to help in up-dating the information on wikipedia as they are based on facts. So far this is what we have there:
“Early life and education: ...Akufo-Addo received his primary education at the Government Boys School and later at the Rowe Road School (now Kinbu) both in Accra Central. He went on to England to study for his O Level and A Level examinations. Akufo-Addo returned to Ghana in 1962 to teach at the Accra Academy before going to the University of Ghana in 1964 to read economics. After graduating as an economist, he went on to read Law in the UK and was called to the English Bar (Middle Temple) in July 1971 and then the Ghana Bar in 1975.” [Nana Akufo-Addo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nana_Akufo-Addo]
The reason for this large-scale attempt at a cover-up is not far-fetched. Exactly a year ago, on Friday, 9th December 2011, in “Where is Nana Addo’s Oxford University record? Felix Kwakye quizzes” we read:
“A member of the communication team of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), Felix Kwaye Ofosu has questioned the motive behind Nana Akufo-Addo’s exclusion of his academic credential at Oxford University from his curriculum vitae. According to him, the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) flag-bearer’s refusal to make public his academic performance in Oxford University gives credence to rumours that he (Nana) was sacked from the institution for smoking marijuana.” The story of wee-smoking has been collaborated in several unrelated sources. The most famous of them all was from an old friend who in trying to defend him from more serious charges of cocaine abuse, admitted the lesser crime of marijuana smoking. This is what the Wikileaks say:
"¶3...When questioned about persistent rumors of Akufo-Addo's own cocaine habit, Pratt admitted that he had personal knowledge of the candidate's drug use, but that it was not cocaine. "Nana used to smoke a lot of marijuana," Pratt said, "and I'm telling you, a lot. Even in the morning, there used to be a cloud around him and you could see that he was high. But I never saw him do cocaine, and I think that is just an assumption people made."
In another development, Dr. Kwesi Aning, another very respected security analyst who is head of Research at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre, and an NPP sympathiser, was quoted to have admitted that Akufo-Addo had used drugs in his younger days, but that was now "under control." He added cryptically that "you can check with German intelligence on that." Apparently, the only people unaware of this habit is the average Ghanaian voter. This is why we need Akufo-Addo to confirm that, indeed he was sacked from Oxford University, after being caught smoking wee, so that we will know what to do on the 6th of December, 2012. One thing is sure: his continued silence on this issue is no longer helpful, and he risks automatic rejection with the contempt that an arrogant, unrepentant and lying wee-smoker deserves!
Forward Ever! Backwards Never! Long live Ghana! Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro. Give me a follow on twitter: twitter.com/TheOdikro