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Opinions of Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Columnist: Yawose, John

Mahama wriggles out with the help of Gbevlo Lartey


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The other day Lt Col Gbevlo Lartey the National Security Coordinator acting brave and callous demolished the Legon toll booth near Opkonglo, at night in a show off cowboy brigandage fashion. When I visited my uncle in the village this weekend, he was beside himself with elation and satisfaction about that episode. He told me he was reminded of the 12 o’clock cowboy films of old at- Ashiedu Keteke Opera/Nima Dunia in Accra and Bantama Rivoli/Aboabo Royal in Kumasi in the 1950’s and 1960's 960’s. He went on to specify that he was particulerly reminded of the powerful screen gods; Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster, Tony Anthony and Lee Van Cleff mythical exploits which thrilled his age mates to the core. Brave secondary students then danced over themselves to watch these forenoon films and came back to the boarding schools triumphantly to brief the other docile students who could not brace up to visit the theatres themselves to see the films fiilifiili. These famous cowboys were champions. They were blowmen. They were jacks ready to show and roughen up rabble rousers, troublemakers and hooligans in the communities in collaboration with the town authorities led by the Sheriffs. In other words these cowboys were also peacemakers using the takashie jungle laws. So, by my uncle’s standards Lt Col Gbevlo Lartey has acted the modern blowman or jack to bring peace to Legon, Opkonglo and the surrounding communities. That thrilled him.

I looked straight in my uncle’s face and told him that he should not be deceived by the brutish antics of Lt Col Gbevlo Lartey. I revealed to him the following: - that, that action was not real and that it was stage-managed to deceive the people. Here is a situation that President Mahama cabinet was fully briefed of the Legon plan from its beginning. The Minister of Roads and Highways, Alhaji Sulemana was fully aware of the palaver from its inception and consequently at all stages of its implementation. Legon did not just get up from dreamland to toll the roads they had rehabilitated through bank loan. The stratagem was fully discussed with the road authorities and it was endorsed and approved at the highest level of the Presidency.

At the time of inauguration of the initiative, the Presidency was represented by the Minister of Roads and Highways who gave a speech to congratulate Legon about the grand initiative of tolling the roads to recover the capital loan. He even called on other government institutions and even communities to replicate the Legon model to pre-finance road rehabilitation in their areas and recoup the finances through tolling. In other words, Legon was properly backed and instructed by the Mahama administration to implement the scheme. When the public outcry started at the beginning of the actual operations even the Parliamentary Select Committee investigated and gave it thumbs up. Things were becoming aggressively tumultuous and disorderly. At a point, government realised that it had to act in the name of public order to save the situation in a way it would not be blamed. So they brought in Lt Col Gbevlo Lartey in the name of National Security to stage manage the face saving manoeuvres in the eyes of the naïve and gullible citizens. And there came the savage night time demolition of the toll booth. In that manner, then Legon would look stubborn and disobedient and government would look good, caring and be seen to be acting in the interest of the people. President Mahama then successfully wriggled out with the help of Lt Col Gbevlo Lartey, unhurt from the trickery gamble. Legon looked bad. No one will believe that Mahama’s own government was the harbinger of that needless hullabaloo.

John Mahama, very clever. He has played the gamble. He deceived. He thinks he has won. No-one is deceived by these monkee tricks. Will Mahama ever be truthful to Ghanaians?

John Yawose

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