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Opinions of Sunday, 16 October 2011

Columnist: Nelson, Ekow

Masking humiliation with weasel words - Dr. Danquah's Goebbels

Ekow Nelson, 15th October, 2011

The only reason Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe suggested he was going to be "unusually brief” in his response to my article (“Dr. Danquah’s Goebbels Debunked”, Ghanaweb.com 13th October 2011) is because he had little to say in his defence for the fabrications in his earlier pieces. If he had any sense, he would not have written anything at all! Instead, he showed us (in “Goebbels Really Belongs with the CPP!”, Ghanaweb.com 15th October 2011) that he is a self-obsessed narcissist who knows no shame.

Having been resoundingly trounced, and had his falsehoods exposed in the debate about Dr. Ebenezer Ako Adjei’s honorary degree, one would have expected Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D. to lie low and eat humble pie. But no, he would not be cowed by the truth; he came back swinging, to deflect attention away from a most embarrassing humiliation that called his credibility into question and rather insultingly suggested that my riposte was the “handiwork the UK and Ireland Branch of the CPP”. What utter nonsense!

Instead of apologizing for his inaccuracies and falsehoods, he has the gall to call me a congenital liar; but it was not long before the con artist that he is, returned to form with another cock and bull fib: that I agreed with him that Dr. Ebenezer Ako Adjei’s honorary degree was awarded in absentia.

First of all, Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe never suggested Ako Adjei’s honorary degree was awarded in absentia. This is what he wrote: “it was highly unlikely for Mr. Ebenezer Ako-Adjei to have been conferred with an honorary doctorate in 1962, when the man who introduced the future President Nkrumah to Dr. Danquah and the mainstream of modern Ghanaian politics was in prison facing the death penalty, having been charged for a dubious role in the Kulungugu assassination attempt”. Combined with his later suggestion that the award was made in 1952, it is clear that he entertained the idea that Ako Adjei may have received it in person but that he did so with Nkrumah and Botsio in 1952. There was never any hint of him believing the award was made in absentia.

It was I who introduced an award in absentia into the debate to close-off any escape route for our analytically challenged Associate Professor. I knew that once I had exposed his lies about a joint award in 1952[sic], he would turn to the possibility of the award being made in absentia in 1962, to make sense of his fabrication that Ako Adjei was in detention at the time of the award.

So thinking ahead (as he is incapable of doing) and to ensure that there was no escape route for Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, I wanted Lincoln University to put it put on record and confirm that the honorary degree awarded in 1962 was not made in absentia and hence why I used the words “ to cover our bases”. And that was before moving on to the chronology of events that exposed the howlers in Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe’s claims.

Now Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe sees this as a contradiction when I did not suggest the award was made in absentia and worse, agreed with a claim he never made. His position seems to have shifted from an award in 1952 (with Nkrumah and Bostio), to no award in 1962 because Ako Adjei was in detention and then to an award made in absentia in 1962, all of which is hogwash!

There is indeed a contradiction but it is Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe’s incredible claim that Mr. Cameron Duodu personally attested to his falsehood that “[i]n 1952, Messrs. Kwame Nkrumah, Kojo Botsio and Ebenezer Ako-Adjei were all conferred with the honorary doctorate by Pennsylvania’s Lincoln University”.

Mr. Cameron Duodu has denied ever saying or writing any such thing. Indeed in a tribute to Ako Adjei in March 2002 (see “Ako Adjei--the walking history of Ghana” http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa5391/is_200203/ai_n21309174/) Mr. Cameron Duodu included this in a biographical sketch:

“In 1962[sic], while accepting an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from Lincoln University, Ako Adjei recalled:

"I arrived on this campus [Lincoln University in Pennsylvania] in January 1939, in bitingly cold and snowy weather, which was the first in my experience... Mr [K. A. B.] Jones-- Quartey arrived at Lincoln a year before me, and Dr Kwame Nkrumah [who had arrived at Lincoln in 1935] was then in his senior year.

"The important point I wish to emphasise is that on my arrival at Lincoln University, I was fortunate enough to have two Gold Coast students - Dr Kwame Nkrumah and Mr Jones-Quartey - to meet me and to welcome me to Lincoln and introduce me into student life in the University.””

How could Mr. Cameron Duodu suggest publicly, that Ebenezer Ako-Adjei accepted an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from Lincoln University in 1962, and then “personally attest” to Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe’s dubious claim that Kwame Nkrumah, Kojo Botsio and Ebenezer Ako-Adjei were all conferred with the honorary doctorate by Pennsylvania’s Lincoln University at the same time in 1952 [sic]? Both cannot be right and one can only conclude that Dr. Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe’s is pure fiction. The fact is his article was riddled with many errors and inaccuracies: 1. He claimed Ako Adjei was awarded an honorary degree with Nkrumah in 1952; He was not! It was in 1962;

2. He claimed Nkrumah forbade Ako Adjei and Kojo Botsio from using their honorific titles in 1952; Wrong again! Ako Adjei did not receive an honorary degree in 1952 so Nkrumah could NOT have forbidden him from using the title! He was an opposition member then;

3. He claimed Cameron Duodu as the authoritative source for this information. Mr. Duodu has denied it and his tribute to Ako Adjei appears to vindicate him. Dr. Okoampa-Ahoofe lied!;

4. He claimed Ako Adjei was in detention at the time I claimed the award was made. He is wrong! The award was in June 1962 and he was arrested in August 1962 - and the latter comes after the former; and,

5. He now claims I agreed with him that Ako Adjei accepted his award in absentia. He neither made such a suggestion nor have I agreed with him. Rather than confront these untruths, the brazen liar, Dr. Okoampa-Ahoofe, indulges in his favourite sport of CPP bashing, hiding behind weasel words and ropey history to divert attention. He then descends into irrelevant personal history to prove a familial connection with Cameron Duodu. If I were him I would apologize to Cameron Duodu and to his own readers, whom he has let down very badly. But does this latter-day Goebbels have the humility to do the decent thing?

© Ekow Nelson, London

15th October 2011