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Opinions of Friday, 5 May 2017

Columnist: K. Badu

Hypocrisy of the highest level: Why is the NDC sidelining Amissah-Arthur?

The names of the probable presidential aspirants for the NDC Party’s forthcoming flagbearership contest have been popping up.

As expected, the supporters are openly throwing their unwavering support behind their preferred candidates.

Surprisingly, though, the name of the obvious successor to the throne, Amissa-Arthur, according to the NDC Party’s convention, is conspicuously missing. How bizarre?

It is, however, worth mentioning that during the 2016 electioneering campaign, the NDC Party leadership, led by former President Mahama, made it known to the good people of Ghana that the obvious choice of a party’s vacant flagbearership position should be the former vice president.

The NDC Party leadership, however, insisted back then that it was the NPP Party that has an unparalleled record of dumping its vice presidents without providing them the opportunity to lead the party.

“President Mahama while campaigning at Lawra in the Upper West Region, said the NPP will not allow Dr. Bawumia to be their flagbearer because the party is largely not in support of northerners taking up such positions” (cityfmonline.com/ghanaweb.com, 21/11/2016).

President Mahama asserts: “Sometimes I feel sad when I see some of our northern brothers running and also doing this. They will use you and dump you. Let anything happen today and let our brother Bawumia say he is standing for president in NPP. They will never give it to him I can assure you”.

Rightly so, following former President Mahama’s seemingly unsavoury statement, a number of prominent Ghanaians and civil society groups, including the Chairman of the Peace Council, Professor Emmanuel Asante and the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), censured and beseeched former President John Dramani Mahama to refrain from making comments which were deemed ethnocentric.

In any case, former President Mahama was only echoing his party’s apparent undemocratic selection of their flagbearers.

Indeed, there is admissible evidence which suggests that the NDC Party does not select the flagbearers by popular decision.

Take, for example, if we take a stroll down memory lane, the party’s founder and the first president of the NDC Party, J. J. Rawlings, defied all the stiff opposition and hand-picked his then Vice President, the late Mills as the flagbearer during the 2000 general election.

It would however be recalled that the late Mills unsuccessfully contested two previous elections in 2000 and 2004.

The late Mills then chose John Dramani Mahama as his running mate in the 2008 general election, in spite of the fierce resistance by the sceptics of Mahama.

The late Mills came victorious after the second round election in December 2008.

Fortunately or unfortunately, however, the Vice President Mahama woke up one morning in July 2012 and became the president of Ghana in the afternoon of the same day following the sudden death of President Mills.

As it was expected, former President Mahama completed the remaining months of the Mills/Mahama administration, amid harsh economic conditions.

In line with the accepted norm, former President Mahama subsequently received his party’s acclamation to lead the party in the December 2012 general election.

It is, however, worth stressing that in the 2012 general election, President Mahama selected Amissah-Arthur from the Central Region of Ghana as his running mate.

However controversial the December 2012 general election turned out, President Mahama was pronounced the winner by the Supreme Court of Ghana.

Nevertheless, on 7th December 2016, the discerning Ghanaians revisited NDC apparatchiks irreversible arrogance, incompetence and the gargantuan sleaze and corruptions, and rightly voted them out of power.

In fact, based on the NDC Party’s logic on the selection of a flagbearer, there should be no argument over the obvious choice of the NDC Party’s next presidential candidate. Indeed, the next person in line should be the erstwhile Vice President, Amissah-Arthur.

It is, however, ironic that there is an ongoing tussle over the choice of their next flagbearer.

They are flagrantly refusing to acknowledge the capability of former Vice President Amissah-Arthur.

Strangely, however, whilst the Mahama loyalists are moving heaven and earth to have him return as the party’s next presidential candidate, the sceptics are maintaining that he was not up to the task during his tenure in office and must thus be replaced with a more capable flagbearer.

Tell me dearest reader, wouldn’t it be hypocritical on the part of the NDC Party leadership if they failed to select former Vice President Amissah-Arthur as their next flagbearer?

“The word hypocrite is rooted in the Greek word hypokrites, which means “stage actor, pretender, or dissembler.

“So a hypocrite is a person who pretends to behave a certain way, but really acts and believes the total opposite.

“Hypocrites are experts at blaming others, while empathetic people are experts at blaming themselves. You absorb their poison and begin to believe it as truth.

“Hypocrites spend their lives cheating, betraying, conning, and deceiving. But despite this disgusting pattern of behaviour, they still feel entitled to point out (or invent) the most minor mistakes in others—and they’ll point them out repeatedly, to negate & excuse all of their own horrible actions” (See: ro.pinterest.com/pin/517773288395161135/).

In sum, I would like to emphasise that it would seem hypocritical, unconscionable, capricious and unfair, if the former Vice President Amissah-Arthur was to be sidelined in the search for the next flagbearer of the NDC Party.

To the NDC Party faithful: let justice prevail in the midst of unfairness.