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Opinions of Saturday, 6 November 2004

Columnist: Amankwah, Nana Kofi

Alhaji Mumuni?s Elephant Hunt

Barely two days and some hours into his new public life as the NDC?s Presidential running mate for the up-coming general elections in Ghana, Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni was involved in a car accident that nearly led to his death. The NDC General Secretary, Dr Josiah Aryeh insists that his party suspects foul play and accuses the NPP administration of having a hand in the car crash. By making mountains out of a molehill, the accident has supplied the NDC with the ammunition to hunt for the elephant. Will the hunting succeed or will it end up as a white elephant project? To find out the answer, I ask readers to join me in a fairy-tale.

There is an Indian fairy-tale about six blind men and the elephant. When the first blind man touched the elephant, he held the elephant?s tusk. The tusk is a long object and it was pointed at the tip, the blind man insisted that the tusk was a spear. The second blind man came in contact with the elephant?s stomach, and he insisted that he had hit a wall. The third blind man held the elephant?s leg and insisted he was holding on to a tree. The fourth blind man got his hand on the elephant?s trunk, and the trunk being so long, the he insisted he had touched a snake. In an unexplainable way, the fifth blind man got hold of the elephant?s ear and insisted the elephant was a windmill and considered the ear to be the blade of the windmill. The sixth blind man bumped into the elephant from behind and he held on to its tail and insisted the tail was a rope.

The six blind men, however, would have had a bigger problem to explain if the elephant had been moving. They would have had the shock of their life. The blind man who held himself tight to the elephant?s leg, would have felt a moving tree. The one who held on to the elephants tail insisting it was a rope, would have been thrown from one side to another, the remaining four would have been pushed, shoved, crushed and killed. Surely, a moving elephant would have caused the blind men to reconsider and reassess their perception and standpoint.

News of the Alhaji Mumuni?s car accident came as a shock to Ghanaians. He was after all only few days and some hours into his elevation as the party?s presidential running mate. His hospitalisation, therefore, is a big handicap for a party in opposition. His absence from the party?s election campaign has created a vacuum. The NDC is yet to come up with an effective plan B. Faced with such a brutal reality, the NDC high priests are behaving like the six blind men. In the world of Josiah Aryeh, Mumuni?s predicament offers his party the opportunity to energize their campaign slogan ?Chase the Elephant back into the bush?. It remains to be seen whether the electorate will buy his spin. The judges are out on that and their verdict remains a secret. The audience, however, are patiently waiting for the main actor Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni in the drama of Atomic Junction.

Alhaji Mumuni is an exception among the six blind men. He saw what the others did not see and do not want to see - a moving elephant. He is the only person who can tell the nation from which virgin forest he was coming from and where he was heading to and at what speed he was moving on that fateful hour (3.45 am) on Tuesday 28th September 2004 without his wife?s knowledge. I wish Alhaji Mumuni a speedy recovery and the best of luck during his press conference.


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