Feature Article of Tuesday, 6 March 2012
Columnist: Adjei-Brenyah, Dennis
The Case of the Unarmed Robbers
Dennis Adjei-Brenyah, Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
In the searing ethical and criminal heat emanating from the WOYOME/NDC mind-boggling fraud against our nation, the government is now asserting a new line of defense (or is it offense!) for the indefensible gargantuan thievery of our nation’s resources. Files are missing! A major file is missing from the Attorney General’s office. Scores of files are missing from the office of the President’s Chief of Staff. How spectacularly convenient. And so they say: they will do whatever it takes to recover those missing files.
A little throwback: it has been more than three years since this government was sworn in. During the transfer/transition period we witnessed and heard a lot of talk about cars not being surrendered by the outgoing functionaries of the defeated government. We were told that the transition itself was going on rather smoothly. It was all fine. No files were missing then. Our democracy was getting hold. Peaceful transition. A new government with vague but “tasty” promises of a “Better Ghana.” A new day for our suffering people. That was the promise. That was then.
Then suddenly, rather speedily, there was clear indications of the direction of this government. Party and government functionaries from the castle – the very seat of our government, invaded the ports and started an uncontrolled and free-ranging seizure of vehicles dubbed “stolen” vehicles; and distributed and “sold” them to themselves. The affairs of the nation were virtually on hold as special aides to the President were all over the place seizing cars and becoming car dealers – a Better Ghana for them. That was one clear indication of the direction that if we did not immediately recapture ourselves with determined leadership, we will end up where we are now: a gargantuan, unmitigated, colossal fraud against our nation. Only effective leadership anchored on the higher principles of service to our nation, would redirect affairs and give meaning to our aspirations: Probity, Accountability and Service.
As far as we know, effective transition and transfer of all relevant government papers were the defining features of the change-over from the NPP to the NDC. That process itself a small miracle (perhaps a big one) in the annals of African politics. We, as Ghanaians, were the proud beneficiaries of a peaceful transition: Residences, Files, pens, chairs, desks – all.
Thus, at what time did this government realize that files containing vital national information had disappeared? When? And when they discovered that “files were missing”, what did they do? Who are they fooling now? Let me put it rather bluntly: a lot of things are missing in the present dance of the incompetent; but they do not include files. Those “files” were secured or supposed to be secured and or were presumed to have been procured and secured three years ago! It is too late in the day for these functionaries to brazenly steal from us and INSULT us in the process. See, our national horror film stars our President, Professor Atta Mills; a business man known as Alfred Agbesi Woyome, the Minister of Finance (the one in charge of our money) identified as Duffuor; the Principal Legal Officer of the nation at that time, the Attorney General called Betty Mould-Iddrisy and some “legal minds” from the Ministry of Finance – and their wives) and other assorted characters all dancing naked in our political streets and still saying they have the finest “emperor” clothes. And then there is my friend and brother from Navrongo, Martin Amidu. Kudos to him. One thing is certain, criminality has its recompense. And, it is coming. What power intoxication can do, the criminal process may redeem. There will be a full and fair accounting. Soon. Promise!
This renewed recourse to a missing file syndrome should stop. The President must take leadership and apologize to our nation for this colossal, ethical and criminal failure that is poised to define his leadership (or lack thereof) and signal the dominant postmark of his Administration. It is unhealthy.
Henceforth, Ghanaians will say: During the time of NDC-ATTA-MILLS and WOYOME…And, all will know what we are talking about. Deep-seated corruption of the most gargantuan dimensions.
This President, will be defined by his startling incoherence and diffused and confused uncertainty regarding this horrendous fraud on our nation.
There is a reference and almost accepted description of this unarmed robbery as a “judgment debt”. Let it be known by all. This is NOT about any judgment debt; anyway you define it: Let us see the judgment, when was it filed? How was it computed? What interest accrued? And above all, what was the judgment debt for? For a nation in such dire circumstances, it is a frontal insult on our people to attempt all these hollow defenses for the manifestly indefensible. Next time we see a policeman or woman by the roadside trying to “extract” some cedis from a driver (or helping to magically transform cocaine to baking soda), you will know where that breed of corruption comes from. At the very top! When you see a “judge” give a judgment that even a first-year law student see as “smelly”, you can see where it was nurtured. At the very top. Our leaders MUST apologize to our nation for this FRAUD and find all the missing links and heal our nation. The files are NOT missing. What is missing is ideas to help defeat this cancerous, corrosive corruption and set our nation up on high as beacon of hope. What is missing is leadership that is truly principled and anchored on “Probity and accountability” and Service to our motherland, Ghana. This recourse to “missing files” presents a poetic affirmation of our dire circumstances – missing leadership.
I submit that this is the case of the unarmed robbery that is going to define this administration. We can turn the tide. We can renew our faith in ourselves. The challenge is daunting. Yes. But, we can overcome. But, please SHOW US THE MONEY. Our nation deserves that much. Our people need it. Let it be now.
Dennis Adjei-Brenyah, Esq. is an Attorney and Counselor at Law in New York, United States of America