Feature Article of Friday, 4 January 2013
Columnist: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
If he has not already been wisely advised to put his scheduled presidential inauguration on hold till the Supreme Court has determined the real winner of the December 7-8, 2012 election, in order to save himself a great possibility of embarrassment, then I am hereby exhorting Mr. John Dramani Mahama to do precisely so. I am suggesting precisely the preceding because reading through his New Year’s Message to Ghanaians fully convinced me that Mr. Mahama is slowly but surely coming to terms with the glaringly incontrovertible fact that he is not the winner of Election 2012, not even by the stretch of his own remarkably poetic imagination (See “Full Text of President Mahama’s New Year Message” Ghana News Agency/Ghanaweb.com 1/1/13).
The webmaster, or proprietor, of Ghanaweb.com must have deeply sensed the gloomy tone of wistfulness in which the speech clearly appears to have been given, thus the valedictory pose of the photograph accompanying the scripted version of Mr. Mahama’s speech. Very likely, the author of the speech must just have finished his/her umpteenth reading of Shakespeare’s MacBeth, a perennial classic in the politics of intrigues and the tragic end to which its major players are invariably brought.
Hopefully, the end for Mr. Mahama would only entail his being gently and diplomatically asked to dismount from his clearly ill-acquired status as President of the Democratic Republic of Ghana. I am not even sure of what the former Minister of Communications under Chairman Jeremiah John Rawlings means, when Mr. Mahama asserts that “Ghana has…experienced a level of patriotism and unity that has not been seen since the days of our independence. 2012 was the year in which we rediscovered hope.”
Actually, 2012 and his rabidly invidious presidential campaign fully convinced me that unless the Ghana Supreme Court privileges the rule of fairness, justice, lawfulness and good conscience, Ghanaians would be effectively and perennially doomed to living in indisputably the most divisive country in the West African sub-region if, in fact, not the entire African continent, perhaps with the practical exceptions of strife-torn Somalia and the so-called Democratic Republic of the Congo.
What high level of “patriotism” have Ghanaians experienced when, for the first time in the country’s political campaign history, Mr. Mahama could stand before hundreds of thousands of Northerners and brazenly demand their exclusive electoral loyalty merely because “I am one of your own”? Likewise, when the Bole-Bamboi native of Gonja ethnicity could exuberantly and sarcastically tell his northern regional kinsmen and clansmen and women that unless Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, most of whose family members truck with the “revolutionary” operatives of the National Democratic Congress, were made flagbearer of the main opposition New Patriotic Party, not a single Northerner should consider voting for the Southern-born Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, what sort of “national unity” are we talking about here? Gonja national unity or Bole-Bamboi municipal untity?
I was also uncontrollably amused when facilely aping Western liberal political science rhetoric, Mr. Mahama glibly opined that “2012…marked Ghana’s sixth successful election since our return to democracy and constitutional rule. Like most elections the world over, this was a hard-fought contest; yet, by and large, all the debates, disputes and differences of opinion were handled peacefully, and with respect for the rights of others and the rule of law.”
For starters, why didn’t Mr. Mahama honestly inform the global community that, indeed, it was the direct ideological antecedent of his so-called National Democratic Congress, the Rawlings-led Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC), that literally and callously froze Ghanaian democracy and the rule of law for some eleven years by replacing the latter with the revolutionary Darwinian law of summary executions of political opponents, euphemistically dubbed “The Culture of Silence” by the late Professor Adu A. Boahen?
And, of course, Mr. Mahama ought to have added that his Gaddafy-look-alike half-junta government of the PNDC it was that woefully and deliberately mis-educated Ghanaians into believing that the faux-socialist death-squad judicial system – known as the People’s Courts – and the vigilante-oriented so-called People’s Defense Committees (PDCs) were the most democratic ideological and institutional frameworks in postcolonial Ghanaian history.
In sum, if by vacuously mouthing Western liberal political platitudes, he hopes to induce Ghanaians into a stuporous state of amnesia, then Mr. Mahama has grossly misfired. For those of us who were old enough to appreciate the unremitting savagery into which the key operatives of the now so-called National Democratic Congress plunged our beloved country, intend to let the global community in on why the Mahama-Arthur government and Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, the chairman of Ghana’s Electoral Commission, ought to have their feet literally burned beyond recognition and repair by the treason laws of the land for perpetrating the seditious act of political chicanery against the good and honest people of Ghana.
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Department of English
Nassau Community College of SUNY
Garden City, New York
Dec. 31, 2012