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Opinions of Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Columnist: Afreh, Manu Bernard

Atta Mills: The Time Has Come

''I think leadership comes from integrity - that you do whatever you ask others to do. I think there are non-obvious ways to lead. Just by providing a good example as a parent, a friend, a neighbor makes it possible for other people to see better ways to do things. Leadership does not need to be a dramatic, fist in the air and trumpets blaring, activity''. Scott Berkun

In a country where the loudest man invariably wins an argument, boasters have decided to cling to their trumpets. They vomit lavas which need not asking when it would bond. We are also witnesses to how they throw monies like confetti and shamelessly say it is in conformity with the spirit of times. For so long, Ghanaians have been boxed into a corner in the last few years with an unending hype of what is generally conceived as shadow fight against corruption, relegating unfortunately to the background, a primordial responsibility of government- one premised on giving undiluted service to the people. Prior to 1996, none of the haughty class of political strategists would have envisaged what is now referred to as the MILLS phenomenon in Ghana. Political pundits are yet at a loss at the wavelength of endorsement this man has gained through his house-to-house campaign. A thoroughbred academic, his laurels and imprints have been duly etched on the sands of time. He remains one who is bold to air his views, firm but humane, interested in the stability and unity of the country through constructive views and participatory democracy. A man of peace, amiable and ever respectful, Atta Mills is even in the good books of critics. Fair-minded Ghanaians have always rained encomiums on him for his prudence and management of resources. As Commissioner of such a sensitive institution as the IRS, he made sure every pesewa was accounted for.

Critics of Atta Mills are sadly not ready to weigh the parameters. That is part of today’s callowness. They rather scream at the ex-president for reasons best known as an apogee of hatred. If after 50 years of Independence, we cannot begin to identify and strengthen the bonds and bridges that bind us as people, it never too late to begin now. Atta Mills wears on his face a true friend, compatriot and a leader easily at the beck and call of the electorate.

His wizardry in hockey playing is well-known but he also left behind a legacy fortified in imparting knowledge on his students in Ghana. He could have left our shores to reside in the States but that ever-flying instinct in him knew it would be disservice to the good people of Ghana. Not a many people know that the constitution bestows on a Vice-President to be the Chairman of Armed Forces Council, Prison Service Council, Police Council. Atta Mills still believes in improved welfare training and equipment for the police to enable them cope effectively with the challenges of modern crime. This is one sore area that citizens have had to live with and his ascension to the presidential seat gives Ghanaians, a sigh of relief. There would also be the employment of dialogue in resolving issues rather than wild cat strikes. The people are waiting for the time when cymbals would clash against clarinets; spoons clang upon plates, corks popping off bottles of choice wine, and shot gun chocolate candles would be lit and blown out like a short fuse. Atta is a man full of fire, drama, and theology. He knows his onions. His enunciations are so powerful that antagonists have had to take cover. Watching him and listening to him, and having a sense of his courageous speeches laced with admirable humour, you got the impression that he is a man of himself and ready to withstand any slingshots. Atta Mills is simply an unusual and amazing man. He exercises his mind and energy on intellectual quests without any attachment to earthly goods and honours. He is one of the humblest of men. Though an intellectual giant, he never let his fine, scholarly prowess intrude into his fellowship with people. It is no wonder he is fast becoming a yardstick of virtues. It is just as simple as said. We live to see how trumpet-blowers would defy gravity and make fallacy of the quote that says ‘….an army cannot stand the might of man whose TIME HAS COME’.

Afreh Manu Bernard,

Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.