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Opinions of Thursday, 14 October 2010

Columnist: Sangaparee, Clement

A Chat With A Political Novice In The NDC

During the nomination of DCE’s nationwide in 2009, we noted looming trouble as ALMOST EVERY PARTY OFFICIAL both at Headquarters in Accra, Regional Headquarters and District levels holding meetings at ODD HOURS in connection with nominations. Secret meetings upon secret meetings with their mobile phones switched off behind closed doors but all failed to produce results as it rather produced CHAFF instead of MILLET which can be used to prepare food to feed the people who stood in the hot scorching sun to vote massively for the NDC in 2008/2009.

Some party officials were selling nomination forms at GH¢100.00 and even there, these forms were sold to their favourites in most Constituencies by the party chairmen. The sale of nomination forms kept ordinary people completely out of the race. Then came some Chiefs who claims that they have been given the Authority by the president to propose candidates, and candidates who were summoned to appear before the chiefs had to perform customary rites. Constituency chairmen, assembly men and all claimed to have been granted the right of having the LAST SAY. In some instances, some corrupt practices were alleged to have taken place. Can you then blame the NPP for those acts or what?

The official team went round conducting interviews without KNOWING who had done what in their various localities, especially with their contributions to local politics as well as their loyalty to the NDC as a social democratic party. Wrong information, as well as fat lies obviously took centre stage and it became obvious that wrong choices could easily be made and when such DCE’s and MCE’s got appointed finally, they became very arrogant and see their offices as gold mines and can do what they like, damn the consequences. When their names were released for the positions, there were many cases where even the local constituency executives found some MCE’s and DCE’s as COMPLETE STRANGERS whose names WERE NOT among those SHORT LISTED. The whole method used in the selection of the DCE’s is OUTMODED. No one disputes the fact that the government needs effective hands on the ground to enable them disseminate policies to the people, but it is NOT FAIR at all for such men and women to be drawn from FENCE SITTERS who just jumped into the BATTLE FIELD when the BATTLE was completely over.

The NPP aims to win power by using rough tactics because they did it in 2000 with the help of Britain and won the general elections. We must unleash a counter offensive by financing the Pro-NDC media heavily and stop pretending that Pro-NDC newspapers do not have wide coverage. It is totally wrong for the NDC to expect a vibrant Pro-NDC press by saying that they are private business entities.

While NDC members are turned away, known NPP supporters are getting employed daily in state owned institutions and it now seems as if the NDC is rather in opposition while the NPP is in power. How sad! Is the NDC cursed as a political party? No – I doubt it. The NDC must wake up and shine. And it came to pass when I visited the office of an MCE on Thursday June 4, 2009 to say hello to him and congratulate him on his appointment as the first gentleman of a fast growing municipality. After we exchanged greetings, some 4 NDC supporters also entered his office and met me there. I decided to ask permission and leave but the MCE asked me to sit down and listen to what those men had to say.

Their message was that an amount of GH¢50.00 was given to the constituency organizer to buy fuel into a pick-up to enable them travel to Accra and back – the driver bought only GH¢5.00 and the tank was full but a receipt was issued to cover it and the organizer forged the receipt to read GH¢50.00 instead of GH¢5.00. two of the complainants were cadres and the other two were the Treasurer and Secretary of the Constituency respectively – the MCE asked them to go and come the following Monday which fell on June 15, 2009. I was shocked by the comments of the MCE when the four party supporters left his office leaving this writer in his office “In fact, until we DO AWAY with these dangerous species called cadres and their so-called Rawlings – the NDC will never know any peace in this country”. He never knew that this writer was also a cadre, so I decided to freely take him to school and here we go: Honourable, do you know that your sector minister for local government is a cadre and you described cadres as dangerous species in the NDC? Oh! Sorry I do not know that was his reply.

Do you also know that Hon. Ato Ahwoi, Kwamena Ahwoi and Kwesi Ahwoi current minister of Agriculture are all cadres? He answered in the negative. Do you also know that Hon. Martin Amidu – minister of the Interior as well as Cletus Avoka, the Majority Leader of Parliament are all cadres? He said No! Do you know that the National Security Co-ordinator and his deputy as well as Dan Abodakpi – an ambassador are all cadres? He was shocked and even frightened. Do you know that the National Chairman of the NDC and his 6 Vice chairmen as well as the General Secretary of the NDC are all cadres as well as the Chief of Staff? His face changed completely and he was shivering BUT I had just mentioned only a few names of senior cadres to him. Are you describing all these hardworking gentlemen as dangerous species that must be removed for peace to prevail in the NDC?

Do you know comrade Yaw Akrasi Sarpong of NACOB and Hon. Daniel Ohene Agyekum, current ambassador to the United States as well as Hon. Samuel Sarpong the KMA Boss are all senior cadres? He answered in the negative and was sweating profusely in an air conditioned office and finally pleaded with me NOT to report him to the powers that be. I assured him that I do not report the negative activities of government appointees but it is rather the work of the Security Agencies in the various District and Municipalities to work on.

As a political novice, he quickly heaved a sigh of relief by telling me that as for the Security Agencies, they are all in Accra, so he had no problem. I was shocked with that remarks by the MCE who did not understand what I meant by the term “Security Agencies in the municipality”. Was he not given orientation after his confirmation as an MCE? I however advised him to turn over a new leaf if he wanted to remain as an MCE in that municipality, but my advice fell on death ears and he has since been dismissed by the President and replaced by a new face in that municipality some three months after I left his office. When I heard the news on air and I ranged him on his cell phone – he confirmed it and told me that it was his “Nkrabea” I then told him that his “Nkrabea” is a CRAZY ONE so he must look for a powerful man of God to deliver him from that crazy destiny. Here is a tall and round faced gentlemen who had to be dismissed in disgrace and discomfort less than one year after being appointed by the President of Ghana. Naturally, if you put a uniform on a goat, it will behave strangely because it has never worn a uniform before, on the other hand a fool remains a fool whether he goes to university or not. I was not surprised when I heard his dismissal by the President on air. Those MCE’s and DCE’s who have become endangered species in the country are the root causes of such up heavals in the various Districts and Municipalities because they falsely believe that the District Assemblies are their private companies that can be managed the way they deem fit which is wrong. It is their own making – because a fly that has no adviser follows the corpse to the grave. If you are a true member of the NDC, you know you have everything to lose should the NDC lose the 2012 general elections and it is our Ministers and DCE’s/MCE’s that will lose more-BUT that should never happen so let’s stand up and be counted. I always write to provoke debate I don’t write to please anybody or group of persons. NDC members must stop peddling falsehoods and character assassinations and rather fight back to counter the vile propaganda of the NPP for victory in 2012. Rejoinders are welcome – because the NDC is bigger than any individual in this party.

Aluta Continua

Clement Sangaparee
Municipal Organizer
United Cadres Front
C/O Box 32, Obuasi

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