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Opinions of Sunday, 8 September 2013

Columnist: Allotey, Henry Kpakpo

Is there a natural Ga leader in Ghana? Part 1

Greater Accra has 34 constituencies. In these 34 constituencies you have 17 of the members of parliament being pure Ga-Dangbes. This represents 50% of all members of parliament in the Greater Accra Region. Let us compare other regions and my points will be made clear.

In the Ashanti Region, they have 39 constituencies. In these constituencies, you have only 4 who are not natives in the region. This represents 10% of members of parliament in that region who are not natives.

In the Western Region, they have 26 constituencies. Interestingly, all the members of parliament in that region are natives which mean there isn’t a non-native who is an MP is that region.

Similar stories can be told in the rest of the regions except probably Brong Ahafo Region where in some constituencies like Tain, Banda, Sene East, Atebubu –Amantin, Pru West and Jaman North you have non natives being MPs.

In the more ethnically sensitive areas like the Northern Region, it is unthinkable for someone who does not hail from a constituency to even think of contesting for an MP. That is how sensitive the people are.

Now I ask, why do we have a large number of non-natives being voted as MPs in the Greater Accra Region? I would be naïve if I don’t acknowledge the effect of migration due to the fact that Greater Accra is the economic capital of Ghana. Greater Accra has the largest concentration of rural migrants who have made the city their own hence it wouldn’t be unusual to find some of these economically empowered migrants striving to serve their community by way of becoming MPs.

What inform these articles are the lost seats in traditional and typical native areas to nonnatives in bizarre circumstances. Now I wouldn’t be so worried if a non-native is the MP for areas like Ayawaso East and North which has a large concentration of Northerners, Ayawaso West which contains the elites, Tema Central which has a large Akan population, Ashaiman which has a large migrant population and other pure nonnative areas. What is of a bother is how typical Ga areas like Teshie, Bortiano-Engleshie-Amanfrom, Trobu, Ablekuma West, Weija and other areas with significant Ga population should have a non Ga as their MP.

The case of Teshie is even more tragic. Teshie is a typical Ga dominated area. They have a significant Ga population and is one of the 7 traditional Ga stools. When you ask a Ga man where he comes from, he will tell you either he comes from Tema, Kpone, Nungua, Teshie, La, Osu or Ga Mashie. All these typical Ga areas have Gas as their MPs except Teshie. Why? Because of greed and pettiness which is the bane of the Ga man! The Ga man has become dead politically because a typical Ga man thinks of his stomach first before he reasons. So the people of Teshie sold their birthright to an Ewe lady because of small coins they were given. They rejected a fine gentleman like Nii Nortey Dua because of their stomach. Today we have a sacrilege in Teshie where their leader is an Ayigbe woman which is a disgrace to all Gas in general. Our cousins the Dangbes and the Krobos have strenuously protected their identity as a people. In the advent of the 4th republic there has never been a single non Krobo or Dangbe who has even dared to contest as MP in their land. That is how they protect their people and their identity. The Ga man will sell his birthright if you buy him Ga komy and kenam! I am a pure Ga man who comes from Sempe. My father’s lineage is from Kpone and Sempe. My grandfather, Nii Kpakpo Allotey was a royal to the Sempe stool who made his home in Tema. The Gas are my people but in most times I have criticized them severely for selling their birthright to the other tribes! The question comes again; do we have a Ga leader who can aspire to be a President of Ghana? Let the politicians answer. In the N.P.P when talk was ongoing that a Ga man must be elected to join Akuffo Addo as his running mate during the 2012 election, Hon Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu who was the majority leader in the then Parliament was reported to have remarked that there was no qualifying Ga person to aspire to that position. Even though he was given intense bashing, his answer was the utmost truth. Now tell me, which Ga person in the current set up of the N.P.P is a presidential material? Jake Obetsebi Lamptey? Nii Ayikoi Otoo? Lord Commey? Sheik I.C Quaye? Or who? These Ga people are okay with the crumbs falling from the table of the Ashanti-Akyem hegemony that is running their party! Now looking at Ayikoi Otoo, his case is truly pathetic. This man who claims to be a natural Nungua born Ga man was the man who defended that lunatic Kennedy Agyepong when he called on Ashantis to kill all GAS and EWES in the Ashanti region! Can you believe that? The man who called for Ayikoi Otoo’s people to be slaughtered is defended by Ayikoi Otoo himself! And you think there is a Ga leader??? Tweakai! The N.D.C is even more hopeless. The Ga people have given most of their votes to the N.P.P yet they have never been given any leadership role to play in the party. The highest rise to prominence for a Ga person was in the administration of Jerry Rawlings where Nii Okaidja Adamafio and E.T Mensah were the bigwigs in the party. The N.D.C has been dominated by the Ewes and the Northerners; lately the Fantes have had their share even though with the demise of Professor Mills their influence is fading. I hate to admit this but more Gas have rose to prominence in the N.P.P than in the N.D.C. The N.P.P have had two of their national chairmen of their party being Gas and gave the Gas a whole speaker of parliament in the person of Right Honorable Peter Ala Adjetey. Somebody told me that a Ga man is likely to rise to prominence in the N.P.P than in the N.D.C and with the way the N.D.C is treating Gas, I think I may have to agree with him! To be continued!

Henry K Allotey Kpakpogh@yahoo.com 0243370764