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Opinions of Sunday, 19 December 2004

Columnist: Abdul-Rahman

Election04: Post Mortem Analysis Of Some Voting Patterns, A Rejoinder

I read Mr. Eric Kwasi Bottah artitle published on the Ghanaweb of December 13, 2004, with a lot sour taste. The article was written not only to infuse tribalism in the just ended election, but it aslso carried the gabage of full of factual erors and unsubsenciated statements ment to solely satisfy the writer?s purpose. For some of us living outside the shores of Ghana, and for may non Ghanaians seeking information about our dear country, ghanaweb is a sources of education and information about Ghana. Publishing such artitles on such web does not help serve that purpose at all.

Mr. Bottah lack understanding of the distinction between a tribe, an ethnic group, and a nation. The term Akan is not a tribe, it is an ethnic group or if one consider it more broadly, a nation. Given that over 42% of Iviorians are also Akans (Quoted from the daily Graphic during Kuffour?s visit to the Ivory Coast). It is therefore wrong to state in a widely read media that the Akans are a tribe. There are fast differences between the Asantes, Fantes, Ezamahs, Ahanta?s to mention just a few, in terms of language, culture, and even festivals. Although they are all Akans, it is very eronous to assume that these groups are the same because in one single election they voted in the same pattern. Mr Bottah had fogotten that 1996, Rawlings won 4 of the 5 Akan regions, is it not same Akans who in 1996 voted for an Ewe/Scottish man? Or Mr. Bottah is trying to assume that the people of Brong Ahafo, Central, Eastern and Western Regions had forgotten their ethnic affiliations. Off course not, it was because at the time they felt Rawlings could best represent their interest.

Ethnicity had no room in Ghanaian politics, this is one of the legacies of Dr. Nkromah of Blessed memory. It is Nkramah who detribalised politics in Ghana by making it illigal to organise political artivities along ethnic or tribal lines. When he was doing this, many, including major elements in present NPP were against it, and even described him as authoritarian. But Kwame being what he is, stood his grounds and today mother Ghana is riping the benefit. Suffice it to say that most of the major conflicts in Africa today are along ethnic or tribal. Unfortunately, Mr Bottah and his NPP cohorts have already started drawing ethnic conclusion about elections in Ghana. WE WILL NOT CONDONE ETHNIC POLITICS IN GHANA. WE CAN?T AFFORD CIVIL WARS!!!!!!!

I also do not know how Bottah arrived at his 60% Akan population figer, when the last population census in Ghana puts the Akans at 49.1 %. Such mistakes are not excusable given that Mr Bottah could have earsily research and fined our the real figers before coming out to mislead the whole world with his tribal centred view of politics in Ghana. The medium (ghanaweb) he used to publish his deceptive article has the actual figers in its archives. All takes is for Mr Bottah to search and fine the real figers. But because it will not serve his tribalic and ethnocentric purposes, he completely ignore them and went ahead to mislead the world. Well Mr. Bottah, some of us will not let go such ignorance and semi-literacy go without comments.

Mr. Bottah, by his article have insult Ghanaians, he assumed that we have no intelligence and the only way we could organise ourselves or vote is through ethnic or tribal lines. He also choose ignore other reasons that might have made Ghanaians elect Mr Kuffour and not Mills. I will end this by advicing Mr Bottah to have his facts right the next time he writing, and also ethnic sensationalism will not help the Ghana cause.


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