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Opinions of Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Columnist: Ali, Prince Justice

AFAG got it all wrong

With great dismay, the leadership of Northern Young Democrats (NYD) read an article published on peacefmonline.com (@ 6/10/14) titled ‘Do Not Swear In Spio Garbrah’. The said article was supposedly authored by AFAG.

Irrefutably, the said writers contributed their part to strengthening our democracy (ie, Freedom of Speech) by telling the President not to swear in the much-awaited Trade Minister. Typical of groups of NPP lineage, AFAG added its voice to the Spio’s ill-conceived drama. But what exactly prompted these seemingly misinformed youth to make such a ridiculous and ill-timed suggestion?

In his own explanation, Dr Spio, the former London-based Commonwealth Telecommunication Organization (CTO) boss, said he was misinterpreted over the Team B issue. And given that chance, he made his point clear but went ahead to apologize. The apology never meant that he deliberately insulted anybody at that time, but it only signifies the inherent differences among people who naturally interpret words differently. What again following such a diplomatic approach in addressing an in-house issue? It was these same NPP affiliates that overdramatised the said statement and ostensibly made a political capital out of it. Indeed, those ministers (if any) who were offended by that statement might have even overworked in order to prove Spio wrong. And this case, Ghana benefited.

Taking the statement literally that the Spio had earlier suggested that the late Mill’s appointed Team B ministers, Northern Young Democrats (NYD) would like to remind AFAG that several years down the line, the said Team B members have now matured into a Super Team A. We (NYD) further remind the public about the ancestral tendency and the marked propensity of persons from AFAG lineage to deliberately misinterpret prominent persons of NDC. Misinterpretation of persons in power is their trademark; the reason that ultimately made the group a negative of what it intended to be.

While the nation is entrenched in self-inflected wounds needing immediate and radical attention, AFAG thought it wise to trivialise matters by referring to irrelevantly minor issues such as Spio’s school age and other academic matters. Whether repeated in primary school or not, Spio finally rose to be the man known as Spio in Ghana’s politics. All academic records and CV of the former CTO boss are available for public perusal. We wish to inform AFAG to encourage all other somewhat articulate Ghanaian politicians to debate their educational background openly.

At this moment in Ghana’s economic history, no personalities other than the ‘Spios’ are required to turn things around. The former CTO boss demonstrated this-ready-to-deliver posture throughout the period he was before the Vetting Committee of Parliament. This readiness was what other persons of the AFAG’s political colours deliberately misinterpreted as boastfulness.

For the avoidance of doubt, NYD advise AFAG members to consult the CTO offices in London on Spio’s capabilities and qualifications. Unlike some other popular Ghanaian politicians with unfilled gaps in their CVs, Dr Spio Garbrah has a solid CV which is readily accessible (AFAG may contact us for a copy if necessary). Academic qualification alone does little work; only time will tell when Spio (now the Trade Minister) starts delivering real RESULTS. The real results are surely the ingredients that will eventually maintain NDC in Jubilee House, while finally cementing NPP’s position as The Opposition.

Because of the aforementioned reason, AFAG and other NPP affiliate groups never want to see Spio and his likes part of the Mahama Admin. For they are sure that Spio’s active presence in govt will diminish their already tattered hopes for the 2016 General Elections.

In the aforementioned article, AFAG lamented that it was Spio who as Education Minister introduced academic/residential facility user fees for tertiary students. This issue was labelled by this misguided group as the mess Spio left behind in that Ministry. If indeed, the facility-user fee was a mess, why didn’t the then NPP govt scrap it off? Regrettably, AFAG members are unaware that Spio ‘decreed’ that the Ministry of Education should buy and use only made-in-Ghana chalk (a move to promote the development of our local industries). When the then NPP govt took over power, it scrapped off that policy immediately. Why? Yet, the same govt (of which AFAG is a part) could not cancel the facility-user fee if it is really a mess. AFAG should learn where and when to direct blame and praises. Ignoring GETFUND, Spio is on record to have been the first Education Minister to donate a pick-up truck to NUGS. What about that?

Finally, the Northern Young Democrats would like to use this opportunity to wish Dr Spio Happy and Successful tenure of office. We are sure that Spio shall remain the name until he assumes the highest office of the land.

Prince Justice Ali

Northern Young Democrats

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