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Opinions of Thursday, 12 April 2012

Columnist: Bannerman, Nii Lantey Okunka

Appeal Case #2012 on Tribal Hate Mongering

Ahoofe versus Justice Kpegah: Appeal Case #2012 on Tribal Hate Mongering

Reading Ahoofe’s write up on justice Kpegah made me sick to the stomach. If this is the best that a Ghanaian with PhD degree can do, we are doomed. The latter statement is not designed to belittle or disrespect all PhD holders! Far from it!! It is designed to say, some are not able to live up to the expectations of the PhD that they spot. Ghana is a country where titles are respected. Titles come with expectations! I am sorry to report that Mr. Ahoofe is demeaning and devaluing his credentials by engaging in infantile insults and uncalled of hate mongering. Not only is Ahoofe’s logic childish and incoherent, Ahoofe’s tribal effusions must be condemned in the strongest terms. This is blatantly shameful and I hope, some of our level headed Akan friends and Ghanaians from all walks of life, will find time to tell this malcontent to take a hike. Now is the time for well meaning Ghanaians to step up. Speak up!

What is Mr Ahoofe’s problem? All judges are citizens of a country. Judges do vote and they vote for a party of their choice. Judges are partisan, if Ahoofe cares to know. Has he followed Justice Scalia and Clarence Thomas? Anyone who thinks judges are not partisan is fooling him or herself. They are morally not supposed to actively engage in politics while in office. Kpegah did follow this dictum and did not do “active politics” while a Supreme Court judge. At least I am not aware of any such misbehavior on Kpegah’s part. Kpegah is a retired judge. He is free to do active politics if he wants to. If his politics takes him to the NDC so be it. So, I don’t see the need for this fuss over his personal observations. There is nothing in the statement attributed to him that seems to suggest that he wants the NDC to stay in power forever at all cost. The latter is purely a figment of Ahoofe’s incurably tribal mind. I must confess that, I have never seen or heard anyone with a PhD make such illogical and hasty conclusions. In a country where academic titles are cherished, rightly or wrongly, Mr. Ahoofe does himself great disservice by concocting such fallacies and trying to prove his merit by shooting down his own bilge. It makes absolutely no sense.

Ahoofe’s assertion that Kpegah is advocating for one-party dominance defies logic. How does a preference for one party translate to a call for one-party dominance? Wouldn’t Mr. Ahoofe want the NPP to win all the time? Is the latter not a wish of Ahoofe? Can somebody help me here? Kpegah said nothing to suggest that he wants NDC to rule forever and at all cost. All he alluded to was the suffering that will permeate Ghanaian life for some, if the NDC is not in power. Disagree with him if you want. Why should such observation warrant such vitriol and insults? Kpegah did not become a Supreme Court judge without hard work, moral character and integrity (see constitutional requirement for Supreme Court judges). He is somebody’s hero and chief. Acknowledging the suffering that pend, given a situation, does not suggest that you can’t live with another situation or permanently want your way. This level of thinking is rather puerile on Ahoofe’s part. It appears as if Mr. Ahoofe is a heat seeking missile looking to do harm even when there is no need for it. A rebel without cause! How can someone with such volcanic temperament teach at a university? How does Ahoofe expect Voltarians to live in peace with everyone else if he spews such acerbic and malignant tribal hate?

Let’s assume for purposes of conversation that Kpegah was wrong in making the statement that set off Ahoofe. Can any reasonable person tell us if this is enough grounds to insult the whole Ewe tribe? Cassava grating? Trokosi? Exiled to Togo? What is wrong with Ahoofe? Rwanda will look like a TV sitcom? I hope Ahoofe is making these highly charged tribal insults with real consequences in mind. Indeed, it is cowards like Ahoofe who incite others on to violence while they hide in their caves. This diarrhea of insults coming from a college professor leaves much to be desired. It is time to stop this train wreck from wrecking the whole country. How does an act by one retired judge call for the insult of all his tribesmen? This conniption borders on irresponsibility and wanton disregard for life and limb. Ahoofe is old enough to know that even when provoked, if that is the case here, one must not go to the extreme on such delicate matters as tribe. Here, there is absolutely no provocation. Instead, there is a blatant effort to misinterpret and misconstrue to provide grounds for mischief and vainglory.

Ahoofe and all reading this write up must understand that NDC is volta region just as NPP is Ashanti region. It will help our political discourse to unearth why this is so instead of berating people for holding on to what feels good to them. Definitely, tribe is a consideration in this arrangement for all stakeholders. However, it will be far too simplistic if tribe is seen as the only consideration. Ahoofe will be better served to research the reasons why and work to help bridge the differences instead of hurling insults and firing warnings he is not in a position to effectuate. I hope Ahoofe is keenly aware of the tribal violence he is promoting and the consequences that await the entire nation should such ensue. What he is doing here is no different from the cockroach calls that led to the Rwanda massacre. Are we ready for the latter in Ghana?

Anlo/Ewe leaders and Trokosi media showing themselves to be constitutionally incorrigible? My gawd!! Who led the Mateho activities during Nkrumah era? Were the activities of the Matemeho goons constitutional? Yet it won’t be fair to label all Akans or Asantes incorrigible, would it? Where is Ahoofe’s sense of balance and fairness? Who led some of our past coups? Talk about constitutional incorrigibility! Where has Ahoofe been? How can Ahoofe be so patently bias and full of bilge? This man seems to have lost all measures of credibility. This is what happens when hate takes over your faculties. What worries me is that there are some shallow minded fickle folks out there who may take this man seriously and act on the tribal hate that he spews shamelessly.

Let me end by saying that, we must stop this tribal nonsense! There are some among us who seek hero status by making inflammatory charges and instigating tribal warfare. We’ve come so far to let misguided folks like Ahoofe lead us onto the path of destruction. Maybe deporting folks like Ahoofe into the holes and caves that they sprung from will serve us better that disowning a whole tribe, Ewe, that is authentically Ghanaian. This silly notion that some are more Ghanaian than others can only come from divisive elements like Ahoofe. Not too long ago, it was Ahoofe’s party and tradition that wanted to secede from Ghana. Today, he has the nerve to wax poetic about how others should leave the union called Ghana. What triumphant role reversal!!

Had Nkrumah caved in to the violent threats of those nation wreckers, Ahoofe will not enjoy the privilege of asking others to leave. The assumption that you can hide behind your computer and spew tribal hate is a dangerous one and must be beaten out of Ahoofe’s skull. For far too long, Ahoofe has been allowed to engage in hate mongering and tribal insensitivity. It is time that all well meaning Ghanaians tell him to bring down the decibel. Stop the tribal baiting! Stop the hasty generalizations!! Stop the juvenile claptrap! Note also, Mr. Ahoofe, that , you will be held fully responsible for any misfortune that flows from the hate and bilge that you continue to spew. If I were you, I will quit while ahead. You surely can do better for country Ghana, if you try hard enough.

Nii Lantey Okunka Bannerman (Affectionately dubbed the double edge sword) I don’t give them hell, I just tell the truth and they think it is hell—Harry Truman