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Opinions of Sunday, 21 February 2010

Columnist: Amenga-Etego, SaCut

JJRawlings has too many ‘fair weather’ friends in the NDC!!

This is obviously a very trying moment for the former first family of the Rawlings’s without a doubt. And in a moment like this, only true friends will help carry the burden of the moment. It is also moments like this when it becomes very easy to know the ‘fair weather’ friends that are around only in good times.
The recent inferno at former President Rawlings’s house has provided cast iron evidence for the conclusion that I’m drawing here. It was not very clear at the beginning as everybody endeavored to show some sympathy and shed ‘crocodile tears’ upon hearing the news of the fire disaster. At least, the ‘crocodile tears’ of the opposition were very conspicuous. And I personally did not bother to appreciate it as they tried to gain political capital from it. What was actually hidden was the ‘crocodile tears’ of the fair weather friends within the NDC party and government.
Why, the president Mills administration appeared to have shown a lot of eagerness—at least from speeches made—to resettle President Rawlings and his family with urgency. And I don’t know the NDC government understanding of urgency, but in my books, a displaced former family should NOT remain displaced one week after the incident especially when the party that he founded is in power. Many may be wondering what is causing the delay. Others may be speculating the true state of the former first family one week after the inferno. But I’m stating that the decision is stagnating in a response to the opposition calls for a resettlement of President Kuffour. If not why would government even respond to these calls by stating that there is a house that is undergoing renovation for the use of President Kuffour—a claim that has been rebutted by his spokesperson. Why should there be a discussion on president Kuffour’s residence when President Rawlings and his family are displaced? And if government is allowing these guys to dictate the debate and the actions and decisions, who does it ultimately hinder? Not President Rawlings?
I was here in this country—and I’m sure that many readers were here also—when President Kuffour stated that he did not appreciate the state facility that he was to occupy as president—the Osu castle which had been hitherto occupied for 19 years by President Rawlings. He used our money to upgrade his house to ‘presidential status’. He used our money to travel every morning from his home to the office. He caused traffic jams every morning because he wanted to live in his own house. Eight years down the line, the man now wants to live and work in a state property, and it was so urgent that he couldn’t wait for president Mills to allocate a place for him, or perhaps he thought President Mills wouldn’t have the ‘capitalist taste’ to identify a suitable place for him. And that informed his decision to appropriate a house for himself. This absurdity is what certainly informed the decision of the national security coordinator to sack him from that location pending an appropriate decision. I have always stood by that action of Col. Larry Gbavlo Lartey. In this case, why do we have to delay the resettlement of former president Rawlings just because it will provide the impetus for opposition agitation?
In the midst of this situation, an ‘Idiot’ named Nana Darkwa who speaks for the opposition and hypocritical NPP goes on radio to state categorically that that inferno was the handiwork of the former president himself as a ploy to achieve something else. He says he can prove it. He doesn’t stop there. He goes ahead to dare Kofi Adams the spokesman for the former president to challenge him. For those who want us to believe that the decision taken by Kofi Adams to report the claim by the ‘idiot’ to the police was unnecessarily alarmist, I don’t know what they would have done in his shoes.
I side with him. He was dared by this the young man. And his indifference could have had several ramifications. After all, people could have said indeed, he can corroborate the claim by Nana Darkwa and that is why he is not challenging him.
Plus, we ‘sing’ about the rule of law everyday but do not really appreciate it. He didn’t call ‘macho men’. He called the police. And I know for a fact that his action ended with that. These law enforcement officers know the law and that is why they followed due process until the honorable and learned judge Wilson took a decision to remand the fowl-mouth Darkwa in two- week prison custody. The argument that the section of the law which was applied by the judge was last used in the 70s is neither here nor there. The law of causing financial loss to the state was dormant in our statute books until the NPP came in 2001 and decided to apply it. So let’s not even go there.
The reaction of the opposition NPP does not really surprise any discerning person. And I know that that emphatic statement made by Nana Darkwa on top radio and sponsored by the NPP was a cover up for the real discussion leading to the real cause of the fire. The real surprise comes from the ‘fair weather’ friends in the NDC. So suddenly, people have either become dumb or they are stammerers. Indeed, many are those within the NDC who have sought to distance themselves, government and even party from the decision of Kofi Adams to report the statement made by the young man on radio to the police. These are Interesting times in Ghana isn’t it?
Why, is the opposition NPP in-charge of Ghana now? That is the impression I get.
Why are they having their way, even molding the thoughts and actions of NDC government officials whiles in opposition? Are president Mills and his government saying they don’t believe in the rule of law? Else why is President Mills questioning the judgment of the learned Judge Wilson in remanding the young man for two weeks? Why did he issue that statement? What was the necessity of it, and how did it influence the decision of the higher court which granted bail to Nana Darkwa barely 24hrs after Judge Wilson denied him bail only for him to come out as a BIGGER HERO to the NPP who now claim that they are ‘resisting oppressors rule’. Are president Mills and his government attempting to create the impression that if there is an ‘oppressor’ who reported the young man to the police, that ‘oppressor’ is not a part of the NDC government? These are all questions we would want the ‘fair weather’ friends of President Rawlings in the NDC to answer.
It was a preposterous statement made by the young man. But unless you are simply not discerning, you would know that that statement wasn’t simply coming from that ‘idiot’ but from the dishonorable men and women who boycotted parliament and went about singing and threatening brimstone and fire. It was from the NPP hypocritical national executives who went to shed ‘crocodile tears’ in front of the Rawlings’s in a cosmetic show of sympathy.
The NPP have had their day. Thanks to President Mills and his government!
I wonder how many more times President Mills and his government would allow the NPP to stampede justice in this country. And I wonder how many more Judges like the very honorable Judge Wilson will be willing to interpret the law correctly next time knowing he could be embarrassed by statements from the president and government officials who are willing to kowtow to the opposition and aid them in the travesty of justice. One thing I know for sure from all these events is that, former president Rawlings has too many ‘fair weather’ friends in the party that he founded and they would all be found out very soon.

More time.