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Opinions of Thursday, 15 July 2010

Columnist: Amponsah, Jerry

What Is Isaac Osei Hankering For?

It is very difficult to fathom the sinister attempt of Hon. Isaac Osei, MP for

Subin Constituency, who has quickly turned himself into a caricature of a

power-hungry political codger.

My piece here was planned from the very first time I learnt of his intention to

run as a Member of Parliament. I was quite prescient in relation to his

political ambition.

I first had the privilege to meet him in London somewhere in the beginning of

the fall in 2006, at his farewell party on the premises of the Ghana High

Commission. I was quite impressed with him. A fine gentleman, soft spoken, he

was a nice looking bloke. Isaac looked just like his name – an elegant, elderly


During his administration, ex President J.A. Kufour appointed Osei to the role

of Ghana’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. Eventually, after this

assignment, Osei became the Chief Executive Officer of the Cocoa Marketing Board


And now, as a result of these high-profile positions, he is using the media to

his advantage, in order to seek wider attention.

He is only teasing the good people of Subin who spent their precious time on 7th

December 2008 queued in the burning sun to vote for him to represent them in

parliament. No wonder NPP faced voter apathy, in Subin constituency, and

throughout the entire region.

Osei ran a roller coaster campaign in a big time convoy within the

constituency, only thanking the populace for his candidacy. He apparently became

nonchalant about the presidential election.

Ayisi Boateng and Eugene Antwi [both, more viable candidates] contested Isaac

Osei in the party’s Member of Parliament primaries election. Both, having spent

their time and energies for the party, could have done the party better. They

answer the party’s call when it needs them. Both men enslaved and knocked their

brains out for the party.

Ayisi Boateng, once passionately ebullient, very popular, highly political,

eloquent, a business mogul, who has established a business within Subin

constituency for over 30 years, creating employment, has added immensely to the

economic value of the constituency. Boateng has served the NPP with the better

part of his life, defending and promoting the ideology and position of the

party. Years ago, when our opponents on political discussions on public radio

tried to skew the facts surrounding certain issues to their advantage, Ayisi

Boateng, irrespective of the situation he found himself in, drove directly to

the broadcasting radio station, in order to clarify those specific issues with

empirical facts. Subin knows him and he knows Subin. Even infants of the

constituency know him and his business very well. He was there when NPP was in

opposition. All these, earned him the name “Onipa Nua,” which literally means,

“Man’s Brother.” His volunteered services were all the more remarkable and truly


The latter [Eugene Antwi], was born and bred in Subin. Even his loyalty,

devotion and commitment to both the party, and to the constituency, is par

excellence. Westminster College London educated, immensely talented, charming,

intelligent and ambitious, he was once the party’s general secretary, both in

the UK and in Ireland. He has equally served the party with all his resources.

He has contributed immense financial aid to the constituency. Among other things

are his donation of bicycles, computers and printers; and, he even paid the

party office’s rent, when it was in arrears. He further paid National Insurance

Scheme premiums for polling station chairpersons. He is a true son of the


Although the ill-considered choice the delegates made, Isaac Osei, truly didn’t

deserve to win. He is not fit for the seat!

He was masterly intuitive at sensing opportunity which accompanied all the

energy he had amassed from his post in the UK as the Ghana High Commissioner, as

well as his position of CEO of COCOBOD. He then descended upon a constituency in

which he never even lived! He considered the Subin seat as a “primary-seat”.

As a civic-minded person, I reveal what people ought to know, or at least have

the to know, as authoritatively as possible, the truth.

He neither fulfilled the constitutional provision of the Republic of Ghana 1992,

nor and that of NPP’s constitution:

“Article 94 of the constitution of the Republic of Ghana 1992, provides that;

A person shall not be qualified to be a Member of Parliament unless; he is a

resident in the constituency for which he stands as a candidate for election to

Parliament or has resided there for a total period of not less than five years

out of the ten years immediately preceding the election for which he stands, or

he hails from that constituency.”

Article 11 (4) of the NPP’s constitution also provides that: “No member shall

be entitled to apply for nomination as the Party’s Parliamentary candidate for

any constituency unless he or she … ii. is a registered member and voter in the

constituency which he or she seeks to represent, provided that in appropriate

cases the Constituency Executive Commission may dispense with the requirement …

vi. Qualifies under the electoral laws to be a Parliamentary Candidate for the


Article 11 (5) provides that: “It shall be the obligation of the Member seeking

nomination as the Party’s Parliamentary candidate to satisfy the Constituency

Executive Committee, regional Executive Committee and the National Executive

Committee that the conditions stipulated in Article 11 (4) have been fulfilled,

and any application which does not comply with these conditions shall be


As if he knew the party would lose the presidential election, Isaac dreamt of

using our constituency as a refuge to stay in political office. He hurriedly

refurbished and developed an office within an old building at Amakom, within the

constituency, claiming that the building belonged to his late father. Does that

make him “eligible”?

When we, the youth of Subin felt piqued and strongly challenged and flatly

opposed his eligibility, I was the coxswain. We sent a petition to the

constituency, as well as the regional and the national levels of the party to

the effect that, because he was relatively unknown, we sensed the danger ahead.

This resulted in an imbroglio within the constituency. Our argument was direct

on the bull’s-eye.

Preventing Isaac not to contest in the constituency was like preventing him not

to breathe.

In politics a month can be a lifetime. Investigative findings from the U.K and

the North Ireland chapter of the party indicated that he (Isaac Osei) was not a

registered member of the New Patriotic Party. Though he seldom attended meetings

he never paid dues. At the constituency level too, he was neither a registered

member of the party nor a card bearing member! At a point, he was even described

as a pinko. A demonstration of his loyalty, convictions and moral compass were

highly questionable. His attitude towards the party was highly incongruous.

But, our constituency was inevitably “sold to him” by our delegates through the

influence of top executives. He, apparently, was the highest bidder by spending

oodles of money. Eventually Subin was sold. Our delegates rolled right over

Ayisi Boateng and Eugene Antwi. Indeed, on the eve of the party’s parliamentary

primary election, over 70% of the delegates were masterfully camped in the

disguise of a “party”! It was something more insidious than that. More

apocryphally, victory was stolen from Boateng and Eugene, a big slap to both of

them. The lost was extremely excruciating. Their chances were buffeted by

hostility. Isaac sees this as something politically innocuous. Isaac Osei

employed every means possible to be the party’s ultimate nominee.

Subin constituency, in Ashanti Region, is considered to be one of the “World

Banks” of the NPP. Here, the parliamentary candidate of the party can choose not

to run a campaign; in fact he can choose to sleep all day to the extent of not

even supervising the election and its aftermath, and the candidate will still

win handsomely. It is a square deal! His achingly laconic promises during the

last elections served as a fair warning to the people that he was not ready for

a mere MP office.

What is appalling is that no one from Subin knew Isaac Osei before 2008. Not a

single soul! He was honeycombed and imposed upon by the then constituency and

regional executives of the party and their cohorts. It was they who cleverly

reeled him in, something outrageous and manipulative. Prior to this, he was a

persona non grata.

In the last elections, all the party activities were hijacked, he became

imperious. Isaac being Isaac has changed in a day from a reasonably approachable

man to a political megalomaniac. No one could tell him anything. He decided he

was the “Ultimate Politician”. There was antipathy. Some of the polling station

executives, who were perceived to be against him during the party’s

parliamentary elections, were sidelined from the party’s functions. It was the

most unprecedented bigotry ever to happen within the constituency. “If Isaac

hates you, you stay hated.” He was ethically leprous.

During the last general elections, rumours swirled that, Isaac is only using

the Subin constituency seat as only as sabbatical, in order to fight his way to

the presidency. He saw it as a chancy opportunity to advance himself to the

presidency, as he, being the rightful progeny of ex President J. A. Kufour.

Subin is obviously not his primary interest, only a mere stepping stone. This

was a caveat to the people of the constituency.

So, the questions are: Though he is less than half way through being in

parliamentary office, he already wants to be a flag-bearer? What are his

political credentials? What has he visibly achieved? What advantages has he

brought to the constituency for him to springboard to the flag-bearer position

so quickly? All of this point to a flub in his term in office as the

constituency’s Member of Parliament.

His attempt to seek the NPP flag-bearer is obviously premature! It is an insult

to the integrity of the good people of Subin. Isaac Osei has betrayed the people

who voted for him to represent their interests. He was voted to represent the

people for four good years, but he now—after only unexcitingly less than 2 years

in office — has elbowed the interest of Subin people and pursuing his own

parochial interest, and championing his personal honour. He will later ditch the

constituency just as his predecessor S. K. Boafo did after eight good years in

office. He has only plunged himself in a miasma of serious trouble. Isaac’s

unpopularity and, above all, on the difficulties of competing against a widely

popular national hero, with no record of his own to defend, is an extreme ugly

error on his part. So basically, his position as a Member of Parliament for the

constituency is a hoax. This raises flag on his political and moral compass.

He is in the race only to confuse electors and split the “real” votes of Alan

Kyeremateng. His chances for nomination are slim and very remote. His intention

is a move calculated to fail, on any number of levels.

Isaac’s campaign haiku without legs is apparently a failed one. The syllable

constituting his campaign message is directly in line with Alan Kyeremateng, as

both are two brands of soap in different wrappers. It will at the end crash. As

a matter of fact Isaac is only using “a wing and a prayer.” He is not qualified

to be a hot campaigner to lead our noble party. He has neither got the depth of

mind nor the breadth of vision to carry greater responsibility. Still he

seriously lacks in strength and specifics. As he is “starving” in order to be

the presidential candidate, how does he stand?

He is not refined and his current political ambition is quite unethical. Isaac

is being misled by his political gut. His “tongue is in his cheek.” And, if he

is truly in the race, then I wonder how he will handle the bone which will choke

his throat couple with apoplexy on 7th August this year being mired SINGLE


Subin constituency is patiently waiting for how he will concede defeat.

Even more tellingly, his political desperation is headed for a “meltdown.” The

party’s chestnuts are neither ditto-heads nor ignoramuses. They have

psychoanalyzed all of the candidates, and know who is most marketable for the

party- a presidential timber to ease the work and ensure us victory. The party

will be looking for a candidate who possesses widespread popularity with the

general populace, and whose strength is at par with that of the party’s needs.

These are apparent foibles of Isaac. It is simply impossible for him to emerge

the eventual nominee. No matter how hard he tries, Isaac cannot win the race.

He is savvy about the highest seat of the land, with the expectation that it is

an empty or an easy job.

Fortunately, the Electoral College powerhouse boomlet will prevent gutter

politics and flagrant vote-buying, preventing the case of who gets there first

with the most money or camping of delegates at the expense of their sentimental

favourite. Also delegates will nominate a leader for the party on the basis of

issues but not on any tribal prejudice. One cannot believe that the discerning

NPP delegates in these difficult times will choose a man with this fuzzy image

of his own political philosophy. Apparently Isaac Osei is a cold fish; his

candidacy is hanging by thread.

Let’s face the fact frankly about Isaac Osei, he cannot win the nomination; he

cannot win the election; he cannot be the President of Ghana. He lacks talent,

so why, should he be horsing around? And ask delegates to waist their votes on

him. And he even lacks the experience of a political debate, let alone

communicates confidence down the ranks. His actual popularity with the NPP rank

and file does not even budge. He seems so cock-sure of being victor, attempting

thereby to destroy the image of himself as a ruthless political opportunist with

an ‘instinct for the jugular’, which the NPP has for the past laboured to


How could he commit such a political gaffe? Is he priding on his “good looks”?

Is he strategically seeking fame and also test his political macho?

And, while certainly possessing charisma, it is a charisma of an unusual sort.

He is “unknown” with “little record of achievement” and lacks dignity. His

presidential ambition is considered as semiserious and festered, so why his

eagerness to maximize his charismatic and self-assured candidate’s exposure?

Displaying outer greed, as if the world is coming to an end, will do him no

good. As a political opportunist, he will end up with egg on his face. His

political ambition to lead our great party will be infinitesimal at best and

nonexistent at worst. He needs something to flatten out that overaggressive ego.

He is unseasoned, inexperienced and unworthy to lead the great party. Isaac’s

characterization, a vivid concern for people in politics, does not ring true.

The party’s flag-bearership is not up for experiment.

There are number of NPP’s eminent men, big men that can fulfill the requirement

of the position other than Isaac Osei. The party sees no necessity of his

interest to lead the party in the next presidential election. So where will his

aggressive political food fight lead him to?

We are all in agreement that, our noble party needs a true patriot to lead,

rather than someone who is merely wishy-washy. As Isaac seems panicky in his

soul, he knows perfectly well that the presidency is an unreachable career in

his political life.

As our dear currently moribund country and aghast at it’s pallid sinks even

more deeply into a bad shape, with a speed of wind, under President Atta-Mills

led government. We need an able candidate beyond the level of Isaac Osei to

salvage the situation. Our party needs a heavyweight thinker who has already

enjoyed widespread popularity with the general populace, in order to improve our

voting record; a candidate imbued with immense political fortitude and has left

an indelible ink in the minds of the electorate. We need a true patriot, not the

one trying to make hay while the sun is shining. Other than Isaac Osei, we need

a candidate with universal appeal, who can draw more people to fundraising

programs. Frankly, he lacks the compelling reason to seek for the presidential

slot. His actions will only-in the long term-torpedo what he claims to advocate.

How could Isaac Osei stomach the intimidation and pressures that are most

assuredly associated with international meetings like the UN and the

Commonwealth? The world now requires maturity, experienced, as well as someone

who is as bold as a brass; and in that he falls short.

As a party faithful as well as intractably fearless crusader for the party good,

I humbly appeal to our delegates to nominate a quintessential and a rightful

leader for flag-bearer, but not the like of Isaac Osei. he does not fit to be a

president. His starvation ration will end in an endless pit.

Long live the NPP!

Long live Mother Ghana!


Jerry Amponsah (Sabbato)

New York, U.S.A.