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Opinions of Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Columnist: Eric Bawah

The President and his Veep have passed the paramount test of leadership

If you should ask me what is political power? I will say political power is the ability to rule and rule well. And if you may ask who is a good leader? I will answer that a good leader is the one who is patient, tolerant, compassionate, consistent, bold in taking decisions and above all caring.

President Nana Akufo Addo and Vice President Dr. Bawumia possess all these sterling qualities and they will go down in history as a pair who had big stomachs to contain all the rot said about them. By now, Ghanaians must realize that like a sharp tool, political power should not be left in the hands of infants who may end up wounding themselves and others.

The mistake Ghanaians made was when they voted for Mr. Mahama who eventually surrounded himself with babies with sharp teeth and corrupt senior members of his government.

To Mr. Mahama and his cohorts, politics is all about stealing from the national kitty and milking the economy dry. I had cause to write in this column that anytime these nation wreckers asked us to tighten our belts, they made sure they were wearing elastic belts which gave room for expansion. No wonder the founder of the party, Mr. Rawlings once said about sixty percent of members of the Mahama-led government were corrupt.

The President and his Veep know very well that there is a job to be done and they just can’t disappoint the people who put them there to do the job. Ever heard of the two going on holidays for the past one year? In the normal circumstances, presidents go on one hundred days leave after being sworn into office but not so with President Akufo Addo and his Veep who hit the road running like horses

Ghana is very fortunate to have Nana Addo and Dr. Bawumia in office at this time. When the two speak to the public, there is a sense of dignity, belief, trust and honor. Indeed the president and his vice epitomize the strength of character needed in leaders in critical times like this when wars, threat of war, unpredictable oil prices and disasters loom over the whole world. What has endeared my heart to the two gentlemen is that even when the opposition NDC tried so much to distract their attention, they remained highly focused. That to me is the mark of gentlemen.

Turning anarchy into order is no easy task. Things went very bad for the eight years that the “economic terrorists” took total control of the country. Nana Addo and his vice deserve all the accolades that are being heaped on them by the international community for having more faith in us than we had in ourselves, for being brave when required and compassionate where appropriate, for being tender without being trite, for not quitting and not shrinking from the seemingly insurmountable economic hardship, the president and his Veep need commendation. At the end of their tenure of office, glory would be in the glare for them because they are not ruthless practitioners of power.

And can I end this epistle without mentioning their spouses? They say behind every successful man, there is a woman. Madam Rebecca Akufo-Addo and Madam Samira Bawumia continue to shine as the days roll by. The two ladies have proved beyond reasonable doubt that they are capable of “steering” their husbands on a good course and helping them stand on a good foot. You seldom hear them and when they do, they speak with decorum. Humility glows in the way they dress. These are ladies who can be called real role models for our young girls. The days when Enowaa Kyeiwaa used to act as the Vice President of Ghana and pushed Mr. Amissah Arthur to the background is gone with the wind.

There were times when the young ones in this country were made to understand that there has never been any first lady in this country. She-who-must-be-obeyed overshadowed all the women in this land and shared political power equally with her husband. You see, when leaders are able to inspire their people to understand reality and build on its imperfections, they pass the paramount test of leadership. This is what our president and his Veep have done, and history will have a very nice spot for them.

The replaced player who continued to cry from the touchline

Normally when a football player is replaced by the coach, he walks gently towards the reserve bench and sits down quietly. Some of them will walk to the dressing room to change over and join his colleagues on the reserve bench, knowing very well that he will not be fielded again. If such a player played well but for a strategic reason, the coach decides to withdraw him so that he could use him in the next march, the player receives a standing ovation from the spectators as he proudly walks towards the reserve bench.

During the 2016 election match, Mr. Dramani Mahama was not replaced but he was shown the red card so he cannot play the next match. Yet since he received the red card from the good people of Ghana, he has gone haywire. He subtly instructed his few followers to organize what he termed as Unity Walk and used the occasions to attack the Nana Addo administration.

Wherever the Unity Walk takes place, he will seize the opportunity to attack personalities and condemn programmes like the free SHS. He still allows himself to be misled by his followers, something which caused his downfall. He calls the Nana Addo administration as incompetent simply because when he was in power Dr. Bawumia referred to him as incompetent.

Sadly the man doesn’t know that Ghanaians are happy with the way things are going like the reduction of electricity tariffs, restoration of teacher-trainee and nursing training allowances, the commissioning of the one district one factory, the one village one dam, the suspension of VAT on 64 commodities, the ‘banishing’ of dumsor, the fight against galamsey, the appointment of a Special Prosecutor among others. The man is a dreamer who still thinks Ghanaians will be so stupid to bring him back to power after his abysmal performance as the president of Ghana. When he once said Ghanaians were forgetful and shortsighted, he did not know that he insulted the sensibility of Ghanaians.

In my moment of tranquility, I try to ask myself what Mr. Mahama wants Ghanaians to do for him before he would be satisfied. This is a man who was once, an Assemblyman, Deputy Minister of Communication, Minister of Communication, three times parliamentarian, Vice President, Acting President and crowned everything of being the Executive president of Ghana.

What does he want again? Money? He is “forking” loaded with properties in many countries. If he thinks he can become the president of Ghana again, somebody out there should tell him to go to Bole, built a kraal and start rearing cattle because he is not the only person in the NDC who can become the flag bearer of the party. How can a man be so greedy? Maybe he wants to taste another humiliating defeat and set a record.

Let me rest my case for now while I light up a stick of cigar