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Feature Article of Sunday, 24 July 2011

Columnist: The Herald

Folks, It Is Not Yet Over!

It’s a funny odd country…..I love Ghana. Things change and remain the same all at the same time. Nana Addo’s Listening Campaign Should Have Started with Me – Gen Mosquito Let’s Be Real…Nobody Will Vote For Nana Addo in 2012 – Nii Lante Vanderpuije (Presidential Aide) Mills second only to Nkrumah in performance - Baba Jamal (Deputy Information Minister) WANEP report is an "alarmist sentiment" - Koby Acheampong (Deputy Interior Minister) FONKAR Must Unreservedly Apologize To Prez Mills-Okudzeto Ablakwa - (Deputy Information Minister) Politicians have a short memory. Three years ago, the seat of government was occupied by the New Patriotic Party (NPP), during which time every morning despite the hardships of Ghanaians, we wake up to be greeted with insults, coupled with arrogance from the appointees of government. While the ordinary Ghanaian wallow in poverty and grope in pain, they (leadership at NPP) were living lavishly, their cronies were also enjoying as they unleashed their serial and sycophants callers on us.

A human being can only take so much when their basic rights as a citizen of the earth are being denied them – or sold at a prohibitive high cost. When you have to pay so much for clean water and electricity that you do not get, a sustainable roof that won't collapse, and have to tolerate bribes and corruption at every level just to pay a bill, get a document, or open a business – eventually steaming water starts boiling and whistling loudly. And Ghanaians finally whistled in 2008 that they've had enough.

When we voted for the National Democratic Congress, it was with the expectation that the arrogance and cocky nature of the functionaries of the NPP government would be a thing of the past. We would be saved the insults from the likes of Asamoah Boateng, Kwabena Adjei, Kweku Kwarteng, Jake Obetsebi Lamptey, Gabby Asare Okyere Darko and others.

The aphorism, ‘wash a pig, cloth a pig, it will remain a pig’, is beginning to play out with the NDC now in office, the question that begs asking is? Aren’t all politicians the same?

According to Professor Chinua Achebe, “those who have their kernels cracked for them by benevolent spirits should not forget to be humble.”

What is becoming a worrying trend is that, as we hope and pray that the politics of insults over time must give way to politics of ideas, where we can build consensus and take on board every view the situation is getting entrenched. The future is bleak, because those perpetuating and entrenching the politics of insults are the young men and women.

Those in government today must realise that the only constant in life is change; today you are privileged to be in power, tomorrow you will wake-up and realise that you are human after all.

On December 7, 2008, Ghanaians woke up early in the morning to join long and winding queues to vote for change; a change that was to bring relief to them in terms of their living conditions, a change that will see corruption become a thing of the past; a change that will put an end to politics of insults coupled with arrogance; a change that will accelerate speedy construction of our roads; a change that will bring some decency into our body-politic; a change that will lead to better accommodation for our brothers and sisters who sleep at lorry stations, in make shift kiosks and other places not fit for human beings after two and a half years since NDC assumed the mantle of leadership, has the change Ghanaians voted for come?

We live and we hope that politicians will change and come to the realization one day that what we want is not pettiness, but rather pragmatic solutions to our everyday problems.

Power corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The NPP on hindsight will be regretting things they had did and said whiles in government, but it is too late, too late in the day to take back what they spewed out; their only hope and wish is that one day Ghanaians will forgive them and vote them back into office. President John Evans Atta Mills has done perhaps what most past heads of State have failed to do. His inclusion of the youth in his government is a recognition that the future belongs to the youth. But will he regret for having done that? Are they youth living up to expectation? Some of them have become too arrogant too early in the day. The NDC made so many promises when they were in opposition. Are these promises being fulfilled? The communication machinery of the government is so pathetic. What should be realized is that it is the programmes, the achievements of the President which will compel Ghanaians to want to extend the mandate of President Mills, not insults.

Have they realised that next year’s election will be the toughest of all elections we have had in this dispensation? At the age of 67, Akufo-Addo, the Presidential candidate of the NPP, is making his second and perhaps final run for the Presidency. By 2016, he would be 72, too old many argue to run again, it is goodnight for him then, if he does not win in 2012, hence his apparent desperation, whiles President Mills will not want to be the first President to be challenged, first for the flagbearership of his party and secondly the first President to do only one term.

The Ghanaian electorates have matured and will not be persuaded or cajoled into voting for a group that can insult most, instead they will want to vote for one that have concrete ideas to move this nation forward.

What surprises me is that the President has exemplified himself and has lived above reproach, yet some of his appointees have decided to jump into the gutter and instead of selling or bringing to the notice of Ghanaians the good policies and programmes including the achievements of the government, they rather waste time and energy chastising members of the opposition (NPP) especially it’s flagbearer Nana Akufo-Addo. In communication the is nothing like bad news, the more you talk about somebody the more people become interested in him, and he will be followed closely; your insults could work to his advantage if it turns out that your comments about the person is borne out of mischief.

The President has not insulted anybody. Despite coming under a barrage of attacks in the past and even now, he won the 2008 elections because of his humility, Godliness and other virtues; why can’t his appointees do same. On what basis should Nana Addo’s listening campaign agenda start with Asiedu Nketiah? When President Mills, then candidate Mills started his door to door campaign, did he call on former President Kufuor, Nana Ohene Ntow, who was the General Secretary Of the NPP then? Mr. Scribe, this is so petty.

Nii Lante Vanderpuije, please remember that President Mills won the 2008 run-off by just over 40,000 votes. Has the government done enough to retain these numbers, or even increase them? That should be your major concern. Baba Jamal, I hope it was business as usual for you, pure and simple ‘politics’. President Mills is only two- and -a -half years in office and you are quick to say he is only second in performance to Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. Yet when the President is attacked for not delivering all of his promises, the answer is always he is only 28 months in office. Both former President Kufuor and Jerry Rawlings did not sleep in office; they did what they could under the circumstance. May be an advice from former President Kufuor will help: “I won't judge Mills; Ghanaians are the best judges “

Koby Acheampong, before you dismiss the report of WANEP, you might want to take a second look again, if indeed the report is true. It is an indictment on our security services, not on the government, so let’s stop the politics. Our institutions must be autonomous enough to take responsibility for their failures.

Ablakwa, the elections is over, time to heal wounds, you are matured more than members of FONKAR, not particularly in terms of age, but through your actions and utterances, why do you want to add salt to injury.

Instead of engaging in name-calling and self glorification, you might want to find out if Ghanaians are better off under the Mills-Mahama presidency? What could be done to move this country from a third world country to a first world country? And please tell Ghanaians what the government has done and is continually doing, so that come 2012, we will renew the mandate of the President.

Today Akufo-Addo this, tomorrow Nana Addo that, won’t fly and certainly won’t sell.

A word to the wise is enough.

Source; The Herald.

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