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Opinions of Saturday, 3 December 2016

Columnist: Kwarteng, Francis

Vote out the NPP and the NDC! [1]

By Francis Kwarteng

“The tension in the atmosphere created by the clashes does not speak well of the country and is tainting Ghana’s reputation…The clashes show the level of intolerance, which is not a sign of democracy. Democracy is a contest of ideas and not physical, where violence is allowed to have a place” (Most Reverend Emmanuel Asante, Chairman of the National Peace Council).

The election season is here and already, the social-political atmosphere is charged, charged to the brim of potential anarchy.

The recent altercation between the followers of the two major political parties in the vicinity of Akufo-Addo’s Nima residence is still fresh in our public memory—a harbinger of possible worse things to come if citizens do not restrain their partisan political impulses for the overall betterment of society.

Then musician Kwame Asare Obeng, also known by his stage name A Plus, hit back hard, reportedly threatening that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and its followers will face retaliation if they did not abide by the nation’s laws.

Have Ghanaians lost their sense of patriotism?

Is either of these parties more important than the country?

What is this nonsense about?

Not too long ago, we had a New Patriotic Party (NPP) member and a staunch Akufo-Addo supporter sadly lose one of his eyes during an NPP-initiated public demonstration founded on outright lies.

Akufo-Addo and members of his immediate family still have their eyes intact.

In fact he still travels to South Africa or Europe for medical attention whenever he has to, while the lost eye of his supporter remains lost forever, with Akufo-Addo not willing to donate one of his to replace his supporter’s lost eye.

Then again, not too long ago, we also witnessed another sad passing of Adams Mahama to an aerosolized baptism of acid-bath—all in the name of politics.

The sad part of this political narrative is that these elitist politicians do not give a hoot about these useful and village idiots, who are willing to lay down their lives for these unconscionable political animals practically in exchange for crumbs, for nothing.

What has their “trickle-down economics” done for the masses and the development of the country as a whole apart from filling up the deep pockets of a few private citizens to the brim?

Yes, these unconscionable political animals look out for themselves, for their cronies, and for their families, while ignoring the larger interests of the masses who vote them into power.

So, why should Ghanaians kill themselves over these wicked politicians who do not care about them, if we may ask?

We also recently heard on the new, of another confrontation between the NDC and the NPP in the Eastern Region, specifically at the Asokore Community Centre (New Juaben North Constituency), in which many citizens reportedly got seriously injured in the process, and not only at the Asokore Community Centre but also at Nankese, Akorabo, Suhum and Asuogyaman among others.

Elsewhere, in the Ketu South Constituency there has reportedly been another clash between supporters of the NPP and the NDC over a banner.

One banner allegedly displayed the inscription:

“Ghanaian Residents in the Volta Region Are Not Togolese. They Have Rights Just Like Those in the UK.”

The other had the following inscription:

“Ketu South Welcomes Nana Akufo-Addo, Bawumia and the NPP to the Republic of Togo. We are Ghanaians, not Togolese.”

Fighting over banners?

How about fighting for children who still study under trees?

About expectant mothers who sleep on concrete floors because maternal hospitals lack beds?

About the rights of child hawkers?

About forcing politicians to return untold sums of money stolen from the national coffers?

About dire environmental issues such as galamsey-related pollution?...

What do Bawumia and Akufo-Addo want from these Togolese—anyway?

About out mineral and oil/gas reserves having been signed away to foreign interests—on the cheap?

In some of these incidents members from both camps reportedly pelt or throw stones at each other as Palestinians are known for when confronted with the indomitable war machinery of the State of Israel.

It is, however, not too clear if the blind followers of the NPP and the NDC have better legitimate grievances against each other than those of the Palestinians and the Israelis against each other.

Brothers throwing stones at each other; sisters throwing stones at each other; husbands and wives throwing stones at each other; bosom friends throwing stones at each other; parents and their children throwing stones at each other; Christians and Muslims insulting God—all in the name of partisan politics.

How much is the worth of a Ghanaian citizen in the reckoning of a Ghanaian politician?

Politicians are amassing wealth at an increasing rate, the masses grinding poverty and privation.

These politicians live in Jannah, the poor masses in Jahannam.

How come the poor masses cannot sing Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World”? How come the poor masses always sing Max Romeo’s “Chase the Devil”?

And how come only politicians can sing this paradisiacal anthem—“What a Wonderful World” —so well? What is so wonderful about this world that only politicians can see and appreciate?

That is, what is the point then in blindly following the politician who steals only for himself, his family and his close friends?

Here is how much the ordinary Ghanaian is worth to the unconscionable, lazy politician:

“See them fighting for power

“But they know not the hour

“So they bribing with guns, spare parts and money

“Trying to belittle our integrity now

“They say what we know, is just what they teach us

“‘Cause every time they can reach us through political strategy

“They keep us hungry

“And when you gonna get some food

“Your brother got to be your enemy…

(Bob Marley, “Ambush in the Night)

The line “Your brother got to be your enemy” says it all, the worth of the Ghanaian electorate.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Certainly if one cannot defend or sustain the painful, rumbling and crying emptiness of the belly in its moments of satisfying fullness, then obviously one has no right to embrace the joyous fullness of the belly in its moments of painful emptiness.

Even the belly of democracy also deserves a fair, non-hypocritical station among the critical possibilities of human emotions, in the Ghanaian context of the kind of Machiavellian game theory which the NPP and the NDC enjoy playing with the politically anesthetized minds of the masses.

These duopolistic criminal organizations have never stood with the masses in their moments of painful, mournful emptiness even when it is the same masses whose vast wealth, sweat, and well-developed human capital sustain the satisfying fullness of unmeritorious men and women in leadership positions in both the NDC and the NPP.

The symtomatological de-civilizing and blood-sucking propensities of the NPP and the NDC are simultaneously intrinsic to, and a sharp corollary of, the politics of the belly, kleptomaniacal crony capitalism and political Ludditism, all three of which clearly define the subterranean momentum that make up the ideological and philosophical personalities of these two shameful neocolonial parties.

Neither is the lesser of two evils, when both are angels of death. Promoting gloom and doom, resentment, vindictiveness and antagonism among Ghanaians—a climate of fear, is all that they are good at, their lot, their métier. As well as throwing glittering generalities and insidious political propaganda at the masses. What a country! In fact parties both are pantheistic deities of evil, of fiendish wickedness. They are only as good as the scandalous vacuousness of dead and buried coffins.

Evil is even a milder word to describe these parties. Eternal death and bowel evacuation are better descriptive phrases, as well as Satan, the Devil, Lucifer. Max Romeo’s “Chase the Devil”:

“Lucifer son of the mourning, I'm gonna chase you out of earth!

“I'm gonna put on a iron shirt, and chase Satan out of earth

“I'm gonna put on a iron shirt, and chase the Devil out of earth

“I'm gonna send him to outer space, to find another race

“I'm gonna send him to outer space, to find another race…

In fine, the “iron shirt” of critical mass is more than what is required to overthrow the status quo which both parties represent.

CLOSING REMARKS

Rejecting both the NPP and the NDC is a must—a patriotic duty, a moral duty, a national duty—as both have not moved away from and still represent the stale political, philosophical, and ideological sickness—stilted maintenance of the status quo.

There is nothing absolutely “national” about the NDC and absolutely nothing “new” about the NPP.

Both parties have always harbored some of the nation’s most notorious and dangerous political criminals.

Let us place a third political force in the Flagstaff House and Parliament, a force “free” from the ideological bankruptcy of the two major political parties.

In other words, Ghana can no longer afford the boring stalemate which both the NDC and the NPP stand for.

If these parties cannot meet the stringent demands of the Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), say, then one wonders why they should be allowed to exert any ruling mandate over Ghanaians. Through gross mismanagement of the state and of the national purse, social engineering, manufacturing consent and partisan politics, they have succeeded in turning a once-promising polity into a bleeding carcass of useful and village idiots, and unquestioning zombies.

They have always hidden behind the power of the purse to actualize the enrichment of their leaders, family members, and close associates. Thus, both have consistently drained the national coffers by the time their tenures come to a close, without so much as having anything substantial to show for them in terms of improved standard of living and of quality of life for a large section of the general public, infrastructure, provision of quality and sustainable social services, efficiently running bureaucracies, and so forth.

Massive stealing goes on in part because money is always needed to fund our cyclical parliamentary and presidential elections, as well to grease electors’ palms. Still, the presence of government and the state in the lives of a people is necessary contrary to the stone-age ideas and political philosophy of some clueless conservative libertarians. It is however part of the state’s responsibilities to ensure it creates an enabling environment for the private to thrive, in order to unburden it [the state] of some of its primary social and economic responsibilities toward its citizens.

And yet it is the same citizens who must make sure government and the state work to their advantage. But not so in the case of Ghanaians, who have since the Fourth Republic become morally insensate in the corrupt empire of partisan politics—the bane of the nation’s development.

Democracy and partisan politics have instead become vampiric enemies of the people. Both processes have in turn contributed enormously to the corruption of public morals, to the extent that we can only boast of building an Orwellian paradox, namely “Animal Farm,” as our greatest contribution to human civilization. This shambolic Orwellian paradox is what the NDC and the NPP intrinsically are.

What is more, the social democracy of the NDC and the neo-liberalism of the NPP are the same. Neither cares about the people nor the country. Perhaps the only major difference between the two is that the political criminals in the NPP are professional, sophisticated thieves, the NDC’s unprofessional thieves. This explains why Akufo-Addo and John Kufuor managed to imprison some NDC big shots, while the NDC, comparatively, has failed to match this legacy of Akufo-Addo and Kufuor.

These political parties have produced no pragmatic political and economic visionaries other than psychotic political dyslexics, who—more than anything else—are always to be found in the public space costumed in mouth-watering tailored cesspools of moral turpitude. Such indeed is a country that does not deserve these parties.

We shall return with Part 2, the concluding segment.