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Opinions of Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Columnist: Allotey, Henry Nii Kpakpo

Mahama is an intolerant President!

President Mahama is the most intolerant leader Ghana has ever had during our fourth republic, even worse than Jerry John Rawlings. Mahama is a deceptive leader who uses his seemingly good looks to hoodwink gullible Ghanaians into believing in him.

But beneath the façade of his seemingly innocence looks lies a dangerous and vindictive leader who tolerates no dissent. This may sound surprising to the uninitiated but a cursory look of some of his actions clearly shows how dangerous Mahama is to our democratic governance.

John Maham then as Vice President, described as 'foolish and baloney' the moves to prevent the amendment of the Petroleum Revenue Management bill before Parliament to allow the State to use the expected oil revenue as collateral for securing loans for the country.

The use of the words ‘baloney’ and ‘foolish’ seared the conscience of Ghanaians and gave a glimpse as to how Mahama’s presidency will be. If anybody thought this was just a one-off slip of insults, that person will be sorely disappointed of subsequent events.

During the arrest of Kennedy Agyepong for seemingly threatening Gas and Ewes, former President Kuffour decried the high-handed way the issue was being handled. He used the proverbial ‘using a sledge hammer’ to kill a fly term to underscore his point as to why the state is using too much highhandedness on Kennedy Agyepong.

Then Vice President Mahama disrespected Kuffour by telling him the government will use a bulldozer to kill a fly if the need be. This sneered remark further underscored the perception that Mahama was quite intolerant to criticism and disrespectful.

During the death of President Mills and with Mahama being sworn in as President, he made a statement that was described as childish and quite insensitive. He told the whole Ghanaians that ‘God in his own wisdom’ has taken President Mills away so that a youth like him can become president.

This highly suspicious statement was rightfully condemned by Ghanaians with some calling on him to retract and apologize. What was the response of John Mahama? He called his critics useless and expressly asked them to go to hell!! That was typical arrogant Mahama talking!

John Mahama then as MP insulted the whole Ashanti tribe when he mocked Hon Osei Prempeh for being unable to pronounce a particular word because he was Ashanti! This highly tribalistic word would have ended Mahama in jail like John Terry if he was in the U.K.

John Mahama as President of Ghana has not deviated from his usual insults and intolerance of criticism against him or his government. During a project inspection tour of the Ashanti Region, John Mahama accused Ashantis of being ungrateful and thankless.

He said even if the whole of Kumasi is paved with gold, Ashantis will not show gratitude. This gross insult of Ashantis was roundly condemned by Ghanaians yet Mahama told them to go hang! This is a president that neither apologizes for his actions nor accepts any form of criticism.

President Mahama, then reeling from accusations of incompetence from his political foes told Ghanaians nobody can criticize him except former Presidents. He virtually insulated himself from criticism by making the claim that its only those who have ascended to the high office of president that can criticize him.

In effect, Mahama is saying that the poor voters who put him at the Presidency have no right to demand accountability from him!! What an intolerant President!

When George Boateng wanted to contest him for the N.D.C flagbearership slot, Mahama engineered a process that led to the disqualification of George Boateng and the summarily dismissal of the accountant who sold the Presidential forms to George Boateng.

This undemocratic act of preventing a legitimate contestant from contesting John Mahama shows how intolerant he is to competition! Even more disgraceful was the dismissal of the accountant merely for selling forms to George Boateng! Mahama simply as intolerant looked on while a man who has served the N.D.C party for 24 years was summarily dismissed from his job!!

The mother of all intolerance was when Fadi Dabbousi, the author of ’59 years to nowhere’ novel was arrested on a plane by BNI operatives and kept in BNI cells beyond the stipulated 48 years. His only crime was because he has criticized Mahama and endorsed the largest opposition party!

So John Mahama is now in the league of African dictators like Youreni Museveni of Uganda, Isaias Aferwaki of Eritrea etc of arresting activists who criticize them. It is interesting that not even J.J Rawlings arrested his critics when he became a democratic president.

Ghanaians must wake up and realize the threat that John Mahama poses to our democratic system. He is intolerant to opposition views, does not accept criticism and in the habit of arresting his critics. The international community must take active interest in what is happening in Ghana. Ghana is on the verge of losing its democratic credentials under the tyrannical rule of John Mahama. Ghanaians need to recognize this threat and vote for change in the coming election.

Writer's e-mail: kpakpogh@yahoo.com