Feature Article of Tuesday, 21 August 2012
Columnist: Bediako, Alexander
“You can fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all the time”. This is what comes to mind when you see a trap and smell deception or fish in the Ghanaian media.
It was interesting reading once again one of such pieces from our media writers, this time from the Insight Newspaper. The Insight wants us to believe that: the most vociferous critics of the NDC government are busily and desperately trying to set an agenda for the president and that if the president accepts that agenda, he would be seen to be distancing himself from his former boss President John Evans Atta Mills and if he ignores the critics the impression may be created that he is not his own man and is simply towing the line. So, what should president Mahama do? Why was it good for President Mills to distance himself from his predecessor and be his own man but President Mahama could not? Mr Pratt what game are you playing at?
Firstly, if these assertions by the Insight writer hold true, why then did president Mills of blessed memory not hold onto the beliefs and principles of his former boss, President Rawlings, by for example, jailing those who have looted our economy and who watched Issa Mobila murdered.
Secondly, why should anybody think that president Mahama may be seen as distancing himself from late president Mills if he does things differently? In ancient times, when Jesus Christ was crucified, similar sympathy might have been expressed and experienced, but tell me, which government today or at that time was formed based on sympathy for Christ? I strongly believe President Mahama is his own man and has the ability to take decisions that would inure to the benefit and interest of all Ghanaians. Your thinking may sometimes meet those of others but it does not necessarily mean that you think for them or set agenda for them and vice versa. In any case, if there is any agenda being set, they can clearly be seen to be emanating from these writings of the Insight Newspaper.
The Insight went further to state that “Indeed one of the surest ways of ensuring a victory of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) is to delink President Mahama from the achievements of Professor Mills and the public sympathy which flows from them”. The name NPP mentioned in this editorial is a ploy. The Insight is not talking about NPP. Indeed some changes will definitely have to be made in the near future by the president but would that suggest that President Mahama is heeding to those suggestions made by the Insight? No!
Since when has ‘sympathy’ become a policy that will transform the life of Ghanaians and what happens if President Mills has not passed away? Is the Insight telling us that NDC was going to lose December elections if President Mills was to be alive? Why does the Insight think that President Mahama is such a happy-go-lucky kind of person that will heed to the suggestion and recommendation from the New Patriotic Party?
This kind of thinking must be vehemently challenged. President Mahama must assert his own authority. In fact, this is a trap by the Insight, Kwesi Pratt and his cohorts for the new president. It is not talking about NPP. If, for example, President Mahama already has in mind to make some changes in his government, would that mean his has succumbed to critics of former president Mills government? This is a carefully planned story to tie president Mahama's hands from taking any decision he thinks best; and to follow the dictates of the planners and writer of this Insight Newspaper editorial by ‘Dr.’ Kwesi Pratt. We have heard and saw similar theories of this kind in the past which has become the main source of the challenges we have in the NDC today, but many have failed to recognise this and allowed themselves to be sway away.
I think it is important that president Mahama deems it as a matter of urgency to work very hard on the unity of the NDC party, something I believe the late president Mills did not succeed in doing. The president must also see those who offer him constructive criticisms in the party as friends in development. It is crucial that he is wary of those who sing too much praises of him all the time. Infallibility is of God not of man. There are those who are always there to pre-empt your actions and decisions so as to set agenda for you to follow (as I can smell in this editorial that I am responding to), you must always be one step ahead in order not fall into this kinds of traps. As a party I believe our foundation has been touched by some loud public mouths that are uncomfortable sitting on their own ‘political benches’ but finds it convenient sitting on our own and hitting our heads together.
We need to have a strong house to be able to continue building and sustaining Ghana, something we have started some 33 years ago when others chose to leave the country for greener pastures. I continue to say that the NDC is the only viable political party today in twenty-first century Ghana. But without unity and deep tolerance within the party, we may end up creating a different picture. Our ability to handle our differences will make a very big difference. This will happen when we appreciate the fact that we are different and we always see things differently: we are coming from different social, political, academical, and geographical background which shape the way we see things or want things to be done.
To my fellow NDC members, let us not pride ourselves of how much we know but on being the only ones who know how little we know so that we can continue to learn more and be the favourite of those we seek to lead. Remember, our success will not be a matter of how much we know at the end, but of what we have been able to do and will do when the going gets though. Success means taking into account seriously the implications of our ideas and how we manage our differences. God bless NDC and God bless my Ghana.
By Alexander Bediako