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Opinions of Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Columnist: Ayeboafo, Yaw Awuah Boadu

Can President Mills Buy his way through 2012 Elections?

Let’s Challenge President Mills to His Words and Promises (1)

“Those who know me well enough, be they students I have taught, colleagues I have worked with, sportsmen I have played with or competed against, religious leaders or ordinary people I have come into contact with, know that I mean what I say. It is true that I will need the votes of the electorate to implement my programme for this nation, but one thing I will not do is to lie my way to the highest office of the land.” President Mills (Tuesday March 2, 2004)
President Mills touts his integrity and honesty so high and many Ghanaians are of the considered view, it’s about time he’s held to his standard. This President promised not to lie his way to the highest office. Yet, nearly three years in office I believe the reality has dawn on the Ghanaian clearly. Ghanaians want to know from the President when his promise on a one term premium payment for the National Health Insurance (NHIS) will be implemented? Indeed, President Mills and NDC boycotted the debate and passage of the Bill in Parliament. However, the bill was defiantly and passionately pursued by the NPP having researched through it clearly until its effective implementation.
The NDC led by President Mills without shame jumped into promising spree before the 2008 elections without caution and with utter disregard to his own words “My experience in Government reinforced my convictions about being honest, courageous and realistic in public service. Being in opposition has given me time to reflect and conduct a truthful assessment of our situation. I thank God for the experience. It has made me more determined than ever before to offer this nation a visionary leadership. Mine will be a leadership of truth, courage and a leadership that the people of this nation can trust and have faith in. I will lead this nation through decisive action”. President Mills
Having benefited from hindsight the transformation the scheme had brought to health delivery in Ghana and the President’s own words, one would have thought the NDC would have been circumspect in outlining their position on the scheme prior to the 2008 elections. The irony is President Mills has been unable to deliver on this promise and the scheme is even saddled with problems. Ghanaians are threatened with the re-emergence of the dreaded Cash and Carry System which the NDC presided over for as long as they were in power. Can Ghanaians continue to trust the President?
President Mills and his NDC promised in two years to ‘Sponsor legislation to establish an “Election Fund” from which polling agents of political parties and of candidates shall benefit for training and on Election Day, among other things’, NDC Manifesto (2008). It seems this is the ONLY promise realized by President Mills under the name ‘Heroes Fund.’ President Mills, if Heroes Fund is for NDC foot soldiers, which fund is for the other party activists in Ghana as promised? It’s laughable the man of peace supports a fund that seemingly will fuel electoral violence and intimidation. This promise of the President will be true if the fund is made available to all political activists.

Prior to the NDC’s congress which re-elected President Mills, he was accused of siphoning financial resource to the amount of GHC 90m for his fight against resentment and dissatisfaction within his party over his poor leadership and presidency which they believed will send them back to opposition in 2012. The President was quick to respond to the allegation on Asempa Fm.
Characteristically of the President he nearly cried and sought sympathy from Ghanaians promising a swift investigation. Let’s challenge the President to come again and live true to his words ‘My goal is to restore a fundamental trust and confidence between Government and the people’. President Mills (2004). I end on this note and Ghanaians remain the ultimate referees. Watch out for more write ups.

Yaw Awuah Boadu Ayeboafo, aayeboafo@hotmail.com Tepa-Ashanti