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Opinions of Saturday, 8 July 2017


Akufo-Addo government needs peace from within

President Akufo-Addo President Akufo-Addo

I was not actively involved in the campaign of Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo as the Presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) during the 2008 Presidential and Parliamentary elections, that is some 19 years ago, but I can talk about the 2012 Presidential and Parliamentary elections in which I was actively involved as well as the 2016 general elections.

In 2012, I was the Western Regional 1st Vice Chairman of the party and therefore part of the regional team which accompanied him throughout the region. His election in the region was first at the primary level to be elected to lead the party for the general elections and second the general elections itself.

While I was not fully involved in all his trips to the Western region during the 2016 primaries and the general elections, for some other reasons, I was actively part of the campaign during the general elections in 2016.

It is worth seeing Nana Addo as a candidate traversing the difficult terrains of the Western Region in those difficult and challenging periods to sell his message to Ghanaians in those parts of the country.

The energy and the drive with which he embarked upon his journey towards his aim was very inspiring to those of us, particularly the younger ones on his campaign team.

The middle belt and the northern parts of the region are the most difficult portions for anyone to travel to; from hamlet to hamlet to seek political power.

Sometimes, even in the middle of the night, when half of the world was asleep, Nana Addo and his team of young and dedicated men would be moving from one place to the other selling his message.

There was none of the campaigns and the travels he and his team made that I was part of, which he slept or rested even before 11pm. In almost all instances, he slept past 1am. He still woke up early morning to begin his journey to the next programmed communities.

How he got that strength to do that nationwide campaign and still survived to get the mandate of the Ghanaian people to govern, can only be attributed to his determination to achieve what he has in mind to do for the good people of this country. His self-discipline, hard work, sacrifices, honesty and sense of purpose were amazing. And his Maker guided and protected him.

Today is exactly six months when he took office as the President of the Republic of Ghana. So far, his programmes and actions have given indications of his commitment towards delivering on his promises.

He has not reneged on any of his promises to the electorate in spite of the challenging fiscal and social situations he has inherited.

The weak infrastructure base of the economy, notwithstanding the highly polluted atmosphere of massive propaganda about infrastructural development we were told had been put in place by the previous administration, he is not deterred from working to achieve his dreams for the country.

Truth be told, the last six months have not alleviated the difficulties confronting this nation in a way Ghanaians want it, but there is goodwill for the government. There is hope in the Ghanaian that things will be better because Ghana is not being ran the way it was just some six months before.

The few travels the President has made outside the country have come with positive images and support of varied forms. Ghana is working, and will work to the satisfaction of all.

However, it is very intriguing that the goodwill of the government is fast being dented by very known NPP members and activists.

Yes, every party person had the expectation of being part of the government, playing one role or the other. The business people among us, some of whom nearly had their businesses collapsed either because they were known NPP people or by the mismanagement of the economy generally, have hopes of rebuilding their businesses or expanding them because the NPP is in power.

These are all genuine expectations from party people and the generality of the citizens of this country. However, the truth once again is that it is not possible for every one of us qualified members of the party, (I mean technical qualifications) to be part of the government at the same time or have the limited available government contracts at the same time.

It is therefore very unfortunate that the new government is being dragged into the mud from within the party. Some of the negative issues which have confronted the government and had been latched on by the opposition have all emanated from party people.

The first is the notorious Delta Force invasion of the Ashanti Regional Coordinating Council Offices in protest of what was described as a selection of an unknown individual to a certain position by party people. Protests are normal, but the processes and the outcomes matter.

The subsequent invasion of the court premises by these party people when a trial was ongoing painted a picture of a lawless society which drew the anger of Ghanaians of all walks of life. Discipline was subsequently restored when the perpetrators were sent to court.

The Savelugu episode, where party people stormed the premises of the Municipal Assembly to prevent the nominee of the President, who had been duly confirmed by the Assembly Members and sworn in as the Municipal Chief Executive from taking up her legitimate position was also a distasteful blot on the six months old Nana Akufo-Addo government.

Thankfully, the security agencies were empowered to deal with the actors as law breakers and not as party people. Sanity prevailed.

Some very well placed members of the party are virtually blackmailing the government to meet their demands even if those demands are not available to be offered as of now.

A number of reasons and explanations have been given for the actions and utterances of these ‘aggrieved’ members of the party.

Let us look at the issue from the point of view of the ‘aggrieved’ people, among them is the allegation that some known NDC people are winning contracts or occupying positions the change of government should have brought an end to.

The question is does the party not have ventilated openings where these concerns can be forcefully addressed by people in government even if the allegations are true?

Is the public accusations and threats of exposure of whatever imaginary crimes the party committed during the elections the answer to the solution of the problem?

The public accusations of some public office holders appointed by the President of wrong doings by party stalwarts which have been denied openly by those accused, an unhealthy situation which had generated much public angst and a perception of a government that is unable to hold itself together, is not good for the government.

Some of these unwarranted behaviour by some of our people who are expected to conduct themselves in a decent manner, are creating apprehensions in the minds of the good people of Ghana as to whether the NPP under Nana Akufo-Addo is capable of moving this country forward.

Yes, it is true that some individuals invested so much in the party during our eight year journey in opposition to get the party together and made it possible to fight the then ruling NDC government which had so much resources at its disposal and be able to defeat it in the general elections.

Yes they deserve to be given some attention in the general and legitimate scheme of things.

But are those people also thinking about the millions of ordinary Ghanaians who have made the victory possible by voting massively for the party?

Are their needs and expectations not as important as the needs and expectations of the financiers of the party? The least the Akufo-Addo administration expects at this time is this kind of ‘pissing in from within’.

The government should be spared needless controversies by party members as well as damaging scandals from appointees of the President.

That is the only way the President can have the calmness of mind to focus on the issues that confront all of us. Those who have ears, let them hear.

Three tots from Daavi is all I need for now, but the President needs peace.