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Opinions of Saturday, 20 January 2018

Columnist: K. Badu UK

Is Mahama’s second coming really a waste?

Believe it or not, this is not a repartee at the behest of Ex-President Mahama to counter his adversaries claims that he (Mahama) contributed immensely to NDC’s 2016 election defeat.

Indeed, I am not Ex-President Mahama’s spokesperson. I am only a bona fide Ghanaian, who is ever ready to grub into matters of national interest.

Interestingly, the other potential presidential aspirants of the NDC’s 2020 flagbearership race have been emitting that former President Mahama was the main reason why NDC lost the 2016 election.

Somehow, multitudes of concerned supporters within the NDC are in solidarity with the aspiring flagbearers. They have been ventilating their illimitable indignation over the anticipated comeback of former President Mahama.

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

To be quite honest, I am struggling to get my head around how and why anyone could aim accusing fingers at the NDC loyalists for insisting that Mahama kept his eyes off the prize, and therefore does not warrant another chance at the presidency.

The fact is, not every single Ghanaian was oblivious to the happenings in the country prior to the 2016 general elections. Let us however be honest, in as much as former President Mahama commands some respect among the NDC foot soldiers and a section of ordinary Ghanaians, the sceptics could not be far from right for being doubtful over Mahama’s 2020 electoral chances.

We could, however, argue that the diehard supporters of Mahama were living in a denial about the harsh economic conditions prior to the 2016 general elections.

Back then, the vast majority of Ghanaians struggled to make a living or eke an income. The dreadful errors in decision-making, the incompetence and the unbridled corruption culminated in untold economic hardships.

And, despite the apparent harsh socio-economic standards of living back then, President Mahama and his clamorous apologists kept trumpeting their vague rhetoric , political insobrieties and meaningless slogans: ‘Mahama Tuaso’; ‘We care for you’; ‘people matter, you matter’; ‘we are transforming lives’.

Given the circumstances back then, I do not want to believe that anyone could have convinced the disappointed Ghanaians to forgive Mahama’s government over the dubious judgement debt payment of GH51.2 million to Woyome and other corrupt practices.

Indeed, the NDC strident communicators could not solicit votes from Ghanaians who were extremely aggrieved about President Mahama’s freebies to Madam Akua Donkor of Ghana Freedom Party (GFP) of two four wheel drive cars and a luxury bungalow (estimated to cost a staggering $470,000) for no work done.

Let us admit, though, no one would have listened to the NDC’s electioneering campaigners when no meaningful efforts were put in place to retrieve the monies in the following scandalous corruption cases:
• The dubious Embraer 190 aircrafts deal which prompted former President Mills to set up a Committee to investigate the then Vice President Mahama.

• The $200 million bill we incurred on the unsuccessful STS housing deal which was spearheaded by the then Vice President John Dramani Mahama.

• The bizarre GH800 million judgement debt payments over the last eight years.

• The inexplicable $30 million judgement debt payment to Waterville which the Supreme Court of Ghana ruled as unconstitutional and ordered the NDC government to retrieve, but to no avail.

• The wrongful $25 million judgement debt payment to ISOFOTON, which the NDC government has failed to retrieve despite the Supreme Court’s order.

• The scandal (create, loot and share) at the National Service Secretariat which cost Ghana millions of Ghana Cedis.

• The SADA scandal which deprived the people of the Northern Region millions of Cedis meant for development.

• The SUBA scandal which cost Ghana millions of Cedis meant for the improvement of the economy.

• The GYEEDA corruption scandal which deprived the youth of Ghana millions of Cedis meant for the creation of jobs.

• The amount of $250 million from the Euro bond which was meant for infrastructural development but lodged surreptitiously in an unauthorised bank account.

• Inflated costs of infrastructural projects (the former Minister for Local Government, Collins Dauda raised concerns).

Well, the crucial question one may ask the Mahama faithful is: how is former President Mahama going to persuade the aggrieved Ghanaians in 2020 to change their mind over the GH9.5 billion debt former President Kufuor left in 2009 and Mahama abysmally raised it to an incredible GH122.4 billion in just eight years?

Trust me, it will be easy for ‘a camel to go through the eye of a needle’ than for Mahama to convince unhappy Ghanaians to forgive him, when his administration woefully shrunk Ghana’s GDP from $47 billion to $37 billion in five years.

How would the Mahama supporters expect discerning Ghanaians to give Mahama another chance at the presidency when his government terribly dragged an economic growth of around 14 per cent in 2011 to a nauseating 3.5 per cent as of December 2016?

The Mahama loyalists must accept the fact that discerning Ghanaians could not have forgotten the dreadful errors in judgement which culminated in economic hardships amid the unbridled business crippling ‘dumsor’.

In ending, the Mahama faithful should take a deep introspection and accept the fact that the vast majority of aggrieved Ghanaians voted against the NDC in the 2016 election due to the incompetence, the unbridle corruption and the unresolved dumsor which brought about harsh economic conditions.