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Opinions of Saturday, 14 September 2013

Columnist: Amuna, Paul

AFAG’s Call for Dr Afari Gyan’s head ....

.... a Complete Nonsense

Dr Paul Amuna

I read an article by AFAG posted on ghanaweb (11th Sept. 2013) calling for Dr Afari Gyan the electoral commissioner’s removal “before any electoral reforms” with a great deal of sadness and trepidation. It is the more worrying because quite apart from using him as the ‘fall guy’ these so-called ‘advocates for accountable government’ have once again demonstrated their own irrelevance and their blinkered, blinded and wholly partisan and hypocritical nature.

To me, it is wholly nonsensical for the so-called AFAG, a strongly NPP-leaning body which has lost its credibility as a force for good in Ghana to be calling for Dr Afari Gyan’s head when in fact the man has done nothing wrong and if anything has been truthful to Ghanaians about the limitations and human weakness associated with public service including his organisation. Therefore who better than Afari Gyan himself to lead reforms that would put our electoral system on an even better footing? Furthermore, it is my considered opinion that any reforms must surely be mainly procedural, and that constitutional reforms are also needed in line with such electoral reforms to avoid the danger of disenfranchising voters in the future as a result of this very election petition which potentially opens the door for similar future litigation by losers from either party.

I state here categorically that, the electoral commissioner called it right when he declared the results and this was corroborated by electoral observers including civil society organisations, national, international and PARTY representatives who were present at all stages and levels of the process. The actions of AFAG, essentially (in my view) a proxy propaganda campaign on behalf of the NPP; and the numerous irresponsible and dangerous posturings and writings of NPP supporting 'intellectuals' is nothing but a smokescreen. Their actions, statements and foolish demands lend support to the arguments of those who have said all along that the NPP acted in bad faith by pursuing a bogus petition.

That the NPP lost the election is without question and for them to have gambled in the expectation of justices to annul (and even to call for votes to be deducted and transferred to declare Nana Addo winner of the elections) is the most bizarre 'expression' of democracy and would have been the most serious miscarriage of justice anywhere in the world.

I really do not care what these chaps think, but what I do mind is their attempt to insult the intentions of the good people of Ghana who favoured the president and not their candidate at the last elections. The fact that they cannot accept this despite their hypocritical statements about "accepting the verdict" and seeking peace is quite disheartening.

Through their surrogates, and as a clear demonstration of their lack of good political leadership, they are putting out all sorts of accusations and thereby making a complete fool of themselves.

I would urge the Ghanaian electorate to take note of this continuing attempt of people affiliated with the NPP to destabilise our peaceful country and their relentless attempts to undermine the legitimacy of the president of the republic.

How and why should any sensible person vote for a party which cannot and will not learn to accept defeat at the polls? All over the world parties win and lose elections and learn to accept the situation except for this lot, it appears.

Dr Afari Gyan has led the EC with distinction and despite the administrative lapses which occurred, but which in fact DID NOT AFFECT the vote tally nor disenfranchise anyone from exercising their constitutional right, overall they did a far better job in two days than the shambles of the electoral petition where for eight months, the petitioners and their lawyers could not even get their sums right and the justices who voted in their favour for votes to be transferred could not even add up and worse still could not defend their bogus positions and ruling.

I have followed these events of the last two weeks with frustration and much irritation realising that these chaps will simply not let sleeping dogs lie, but wish to continue to stoke the flames in the hope of creating an unstable situation for the government to do its business. It is shameful and a complete disgrace to AFAG and the NPP.

Do these people simply want to rule over us and nothing else matters? There has been NO INJUSTICE incurred by the NPP candidate and if we follow actual votes cast, the incumbent won fairly and cleanly and did not need the help of anyone. If anything, he the president was in fact, in danger of losing what was a clear win because of lapses on the part of electoral officials, a reality which seems to have eluded these irresponsible AFAG people.

Therefore for anyone (justices included) to think that they can stand on flawed technical arguments and ‘break’ the very constitutional article 42 that we all rely on, in order to bring their own candidate into office via the back door, they are completely mistaken and I know Ghanaians will not stand for this nonsense. We have exercised patience and allowed them enough time to vent their frustration but they seem to be taking the peace of the nation and the goodwill of the Ghanaian people for granted, and in my view are relentless in their flawed desire to undermine our very democracy and the good governance that they so profess to advocate or seek to uphold.

It is about time this nonsense of a debate was brought to a halt and we moved on to address the bread and butter issues confronting the country.

Simply leave Dr Afari Gyan alone. I can guarantee that none of these idiots has a CV anywhere close to that of Dr Gyan and they should simply shut up or put up, for it is they, AFAG and their ilk who lack credibility, not Dr Gyan.