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Opinions of Saturday, 15 October 2011

Columnist: Asare, Noah Dugubrame

Mills Is Getting Fretful

With 2012 just a few days away, President Mills seem very fretful in all his recent actions and utterances. It is evidently clear that the president is entertaining a lot fears ahead of the fierce battle to retain power in 2012. President Mills and the entire leadership of the NDC, has engaged in some actions recently which are filled with desperation.

Recently a crunch meeting between leading members of the NDC and some chief workers of the Electoral commission. According to the Statesman publication the meeting was held in a remote area at Shai Hills. The statesman also confirmed how at the meeting they had a careful look at the biometric registration system and how it could be manipulated to the advantage of the ruling party. The NDC came out strongly trying to reject the statesman's claim. But many questions were left unanswered. Why was the meeting organised in that remote area? Why will the electoral commission exclusively have that meeting with the ruling party whilst it had rejected many calls for an IPAC meeting? If the meeting was really meant for teaching about the biometric system, won't it have been more economical and fair to have thought representatives of all the parties? Could the meeting not have wait for another date, possibly after the meeting with IPAC meeting? That action strengthened claims and suspicions of an attempt by the NDC to rig the 2012 election. Major political parties in the country, including the NPP and the CPP have came out in lamentation over how the electoral commission had refused to reply their letters of protests against some anomalies in the biometric system and how efforts to organise a meeting with them on several occasions had failed. So what was special about the NDC that the electoral commission found space to meet them? The flag bearer of the NDC for 2012 and current president of our land's silence over the issue kept many in the dark giving room for the thought that he was aware and has approved of all these developments.

Again the presidents recent tour of the Greater Accra Region has lead to the revelation that the president's heart beat for 2012 has risen. The talks of fears that the NDC might loose 2102 is getting more and more obvious. Before the NDC will hold primaries to select the Members of Parliament, president Mills was openly declaring Mr Fritz Baffour as the parliamentary candidate of Ablekumah South. The tour of Accra has turned out to be nothing but a campaign for re-election come 2012. It is very rare for a sitting president to go round at this early stage routing for votes and outdooring a yet to be elected parliamentary candidate.

In the same tour in reacting to a question concerning the striking doctors the president showed what many will say a clueless state of idea on the solution to the raging trouble of the striking doctors. The president did not suggest a single solution on how he and his leadership is intending to tackle the problem. Rather he went on a blame shifting. Three years into office he was seen blaming the party which handed power over to him three years back as responsible for the doctors' strike. Apparently it was a distress answer which lacked basis. President Mills fretfulness developed from the anticipated defeat has gravely affected his judgement on what should be said when and where.

It is not just President Mills, but as said in the holy book, "when the head is not good, the whole body is not good". Ade Coker's recent comment about 2012 depicted the grave fear that has gripped the ruling party ahead of 2012. Immagine a ruling party saying the opposition will be shocked. An electoral victory by an incumbent is more natural than that of opposition so for him to have said that the NPP will be shocked by their victory was abundantly full of inferiority complex. It showed that the leadership of the party have seen how unpopular their flag bearer and the party as a whole has become, and a win will be a shock.

It was in our media houses recently that the Electoral Commission was planning to create new constituencies. But the EC later came out and said it was not adequately prepared now to establish those new constituencies. The president has embarked on another strategy to force the EC into creating new constituencies by hurriedly creating new districts in the strongholds of his party to apparently increase the number of NDC parliamentarians. 42 new districts has been recommended by the president to the Ministry of Local government for creation. Surprisingly almost all the new districts recommended by Mills are in areas where we have sitting NDC MPs. National census which determines our population is done every ten years. The last one was done 2000. It was based on this population and recommendations from the EC that the new districts were established under the previous administration in 2004/2005. Despite the failure of the Statistical Commission to bring out our current population after a year or so, President Mills has gone ahead to create this new districts. Based on what population census after the previous one expired in 2010? President Mills in fret has gone against his own party manifesto which condemned the creation of new districts by the Kuffour administration and promising that if he was to create a district it will be based on scientific and genuine population census which will bring about development.

Just a year ago, the president was heard lamenting that the NPP created districts without leaving financial provisions for their up keep. If those already created has financial constraits, why the need for more? Is it logical for the president who claimed there is no money to cater for the new districts to embark on creation of more districts? It has become clear and clear that president Mills and the NDC are entertaining serious fears of an unfavourable 2012 and are employing every means to change the verdict.

The president's fear to some extent are justifiable; a fall in 2012 will get his hands off the NDC. The party he is trying hard to take away from the founder. A defeat in 2012 will bury him politically. A defeat in 2012 is a doom for him and his "team b" players right from within the party he is leading and has succeeded in dividing. But no matter the genuiness of his reasons. Ghanaians deserve to be given what they want and who they want to be their next leader. I think the president should come down and do things the way they are supposed to be done.

He is the leader of all Ghanains as at now and he should see himself as such.

God bless our homeland Ghana.

Noah Dugubrame Asare. Frankfurt, Germany.