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Opinions of Saturday, 3 September 2011

Columnist: Abubakar, Shuk

Everything you need to know about Akufo Addo

The speech that tells you everything you need to know about the Great Faker- Akufo Addo

By Shuk Abubakar

It is now clear that Akufo Addo had learned nothing from the lies and failed promises that caused Ghanaians to kick his worthless party from power. Akufo Addo and his NPP elite have decided to respond to the recently approved loan facilities by pretending to be the party that had our economic wellbeing at heart. But if elected (which is never) he will do nothing to change the NPP policies that brought us to this state. Those policies will continue, and so will the consequences.

Akufo Addo, who has a great talent for faking anger and concern over things he couldn’t care less about, gave a speech at the first ever Liberty Lectures organized by the NPP funded Danquah Institute that could have been delivered by his idol, the corrupted John Agyekum Kufuor or to use his underworld term ‘JAK’. It even contained several of Mr Kufour’s favourite verbless sentences. We had the usual lies, told now for the last 5 elections by NPP politicians, about being the party to decrease Ghana’s debt stock, scrapping school fees, creating 100,000 jobs in the first 100 days in power, making our education the cheapest in the world (apparently cheaper than in countries such as Norway and Sweden were education is actually free). Nothing will happen once in power – for we have their last eight years in power to judge the NPP for ourselves. We heard the curious confession that on education, Nana Addo “promised that a government under his stewardship will not play politics with Ghana’s education” and that “free SHS education will be attained in his first term.” And, lo, the word ‘university education’ was not mentioned in the entire oration. Why not? Because Akufo Addo thinks we are all mug. He is very well aware of the fact that, currently, 85-90 per cent of parent could afford to send their children to SHSs, however, the majority cannot afford the cost of seeing their children through our universities and polytechnics and that is where we need help. So what Akufo Addo actually meant was that, ‘I will provide free SHS for your children and I will make you pay for it by increasing the cost of university education to recover the cost of free SHS.’ And that will be the fitting scenario to what NPP stands for – which is a society where only the rich like his family are able to afford university education in Ghana.

There was no praise or acknowledgement for any of the exceptional NDC policies that work. Policies such Atta Mills’ preference to ignore vengeful prosecutions of corruption and mismanagement under the NPP, and to concentrate on the difficult task of rebuilding our economy after eight wasted years under the NPP administration.

And there was no commitment to provide extra funding to the University for Development Studies (UDS) that would spread their high standards to the whole of Northern regions. Why not? Well, because Akufo Addo and his NPP have no time for any education beyond their bastion - which is the Ashante region – well, may be with the exception of University of Ghana - Legon – I understand the NPP have plans to name Legon in honour of his father. Akufo Addo’s choice of ‘event’ for his ‘policy’ speech was also significant. By that I don’t mean it was near the expensive house in Accra which we the poor taxpayers kindly helped him to build (or he helped himself with our money to build) as the former MP for the Republic of Ghana and as a Government minister. I meant that the liberty lecture event was picked to send a careful message to the NPP elite that he remains one of theirs, and that they can ignore his ‘National Listening Tour’ and those demeaning publicity pictures which showed him actual talking to and even eating Fufu with ‘ordinary’ Ghanaians. For if you ask him today what that lied to woman he was ‘eating Fufu’ with told him, I bet he will have no clue at all.

He chose to deliver his words at Liberty Lectures organized by the Danquah Institute and in honour of the founders of the Aborigines Right Protection Society a solid symbol of the failed policy of appeasement to our colonial masters to which Danquah and his colleagues supported until Dr. Nkrumah bravely stand up to our right for self-determination.

Also, Akufo Addo choice of words can and should actually tell us more about the man and how he regards himself as ‘special’ and above ‘we’ the ordinary Ghanaians. Please kindly read this quotation from an excerpt of Akufo Addo’s speech at the liberty lecture:

“Perhaps we need to remind the current custodians of the national purse that somewhere in-between-their time in opposition; four serials were knocked off their local currency.”

Notice how he used the qualifier ‘their local currency’ and not the ‘our local currency’ as any ordinary Ghanaian will rightly use? Some of his favoured words are ‘their country’; ‘their education’; the man has no vocabulary concerning Ghana that includes ‘our’.

The truth is that our choices of words say more about our actual perception and even of our real intentions concerning events or system or our people. And this should advice you to stay away from Akufo Addo.

Akufo Addo also declared that the NDC dismissed the legitimate criticisms by the opposition, describing it as “shrill cries of a jealous group who are not interested in our security personnel. Now we are told that the Castle has become the alternative dispute resolution centre for the estranged partners of the STX.” This is both self- defeatist and untrue. The castle is representing the national interest and is a partner in the STX project and therefore has the legitimate public interest as the custodian of the public purse to ensure all disputes affecting the STX project are amicably and timely resolved. It is only right that the castle should ensure smooth delivery of the STX project by mediating in any dispute that could affect the project.

What does he mean, “the Castle has become the alternative dispute resolution centre for the estranged partners of the STX”?

It can, and it does – unlike during the NPP administration were the castle was turned into the account holder for the ‘10% kickback’ from contractors – this time and always the castle under the NDC is in the right direction and playing its elected role by representing and protecting our interest from any dispute surrounding the STX project.


Shuk Abubakar

(Student of Educational Planning) Institute of Education, University of London /