You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2014 07 26Article 318431

Opinions of Saturday, 26 July 2014

Columnist: Amenga-Etego, Akaabitono SaCut

NDC National Chairmanship Race - The Brutal Truth

The heat is on, yes. Yet, we aren't anywhere near the maximum temperature expected to climax the race for national officer positions within the ruling NDC.

As they say, if the fish is going to rot, it starts from the head. And that makes the head most important. It is for that reason that I want to focus my analyses today on who fits the bill better as NDC chairman in the Present - future.

So far, only two contenders have emerged to challenge the hegemony of incumbent Dr. Kwabena Adjei. They are Mr. Dan Abodaqui, a former member of parliament and deputy minister of state and "Sir" Kofi Portuphy, former and current national Cordinator of the National disaster management Organization.

In my books, the former trade minister lost his credibility entirely once he was convicted of criminal offenses by the fast track high court of Ghana and went on to serve time in jail. Though he was later pardoned by the former President Kufuor before leaving office, his conviction has taken away his integrity and credibility. This is especially as he pleaded guilty to the charges that sent him to jail.

The NDC with so many quality people with impeccable reputations have no need to gamble on its own image by making such a man with such a questionable character a national chairman - unless the party wants an equalization campaign from the opposition NPP who are already paying the price for choosing a chairman alleged to be involved in illegal drug dealings.

Having eliminated Dan Abudaqui from my books, the other challenger comes to mind. Former and current national Cordinator of NADMO 'Mr. Pee' is on the rampage. There is every desperation in his attempts to annex the position of national chairman. It is even as if his entire life depends on it. I wonder what is chasing him!

In his personal profile, Mr. Pee names two of one organization he has worked for all his life - NADMO. He even claims that he single - handedly created NADMO and got an act of parliament to make the organization legal. Later, he mobilized the committee for the defense of the revolution (CDRs). Plus, he claims credit for receiving and resettling over 1.2 million Ghanaian returnees from Nigeria in 1983. Beyond these claims, Mr. Pee has no other experience until he became NDC vice chairman four years ago. I am wondering why with all the occupational years of mobilizing, that Mr. Pee will not rather run for national organizer rather than the all - wise and all - experienced position of national chairman?

I can't endorse Mr. Portuphy for very good reasons. First, on the point of principle. In the year 2000 when the NDC went into opposition, and Mr. Pee lost his dear NADMO position, he disappeared into hibernation and political inactivity like many of his friends. At that time, the opposition NPP's chief goal, openly professed, was to decimate the NDC party into a disunited group in order to be able to maintain power for a longer time.

The NDC needed its men to stand up and be counted. Only a few did. Mr. Kofi Portufphy was not one of them. That for me is disloyalty to the bigger cause. A fair -weather comrade. As far as I am aware, and the records show, Mr. Pee only re - emerged in 2010 when President Mills brought him back to NADMO as head.

Another reason why I cannot endorse Mr. Portuphy is the fact that under his watch at NADMO, disaster management has taken on a different meaning. With several reports of wanton distribution of relief items including rice, oil, sugar, mattresses etc to friends, family, party supporters, even NDC members of parliament and some national executive committee members, instead of keeping these items for times of national disasters, is to say the least, criminal and exposes a lack of integrity and transparency of his part.

There have been several occasions in this country when natural disaster victims have had to go without relief from the almighty state. During such times, we have heard several explanations from the same Mr. Pee to the effect that NADMO lacked the needed resources or that the allocated resources have delayed etc. Yet, when the resources come to NADMO, Mr. Pee, lacking foresight, decides dissipating with people who do not truly need relief all because Mr. Pee wants to become national chairman of the NDC? Really? At the expense of whole nation?

I am afraid of the dire consequences of the corrupt actions of Mr. Pee who is said to have gone for a foreign loan to put up a head office for NADMO without parliamentary approval. We should be afraid of a looming judgment debt.

I am also afraid for the consequences of Mr. Pee renting out Japanese donated tractors and other heavy duty equipment to the various district assemblies, the proceeds of which do not go into NADMO accounts but to his personal bank account.

Every genuine NDC member should be afraid of having Mr. Kofi Portuphy as national chairman without an aura of accountability and integrity.

The other reason why I cannot and will not endorse Mr. Kofi Portuphy is the fact that he has chosen not only to use the state resources of NADMO for his personal benefit, he is also abusing the organization by hiring too many people who serve no purpose at NADMO just to try to make himself popular within the NDC party. The result is that several party people have been hired to hang on but received no wages for the past one year. Very soon, these unoccupied employees will rise up and begin to demand their salary arrears for no work done, and of course, from government.

How can he for instance, order all NADMO employees from all over the country to leave work and be in Accra just so that they can make up the numbers for his campaign launch. And all this at a colossal cost for a man who claim publicly that he hasn't received his wages for over a year. The logical question to ask here will be: where then did he get the money to rent such a large but irrelevant crowd for his campaign launch? We want to know for the sake of accountability which is a bedrock principle of our dear NDC party.

For all those people taking rice oil and sugar from Portuphy, remember there will be accountability some day, and besides, in the unlikely event that he emerges as national chairman of the NDC, he will no longer be able to supply such and such relief items. And where will that leave him and all the hollow promises he goes about making?

One of the most ridiculous promises that Mr. Pee makes to delegates is that he will make all the constituency chairmen become DCE's when he becomes party chairman. How does he intend to do that? By usurping the powers of the President? Is Mr. Pee aware that the NDC party promised the Ghanaian people before coming to power, to make the position of DCE electable? Has that promise been abandoned? Is Mr. Pee in tandem with the party and government plan? I double doubt it!

It goes without saying that Mr. Kofi Portuphy is out of my books and should be out of the books of everyone with a conscience and a love for the NDC and Ghana.

That leaves us with the incumbent national chairman Dr. Kwabena Adjei aka Wayo! Wayo!! Looking at his occupational background, you will understand why he has played the role of NDC chairman so adroitly for several years.

As a doctor of philosophy, he has taught in several universities not only in Ghana but also elsewhere. Some courses he taught includes: experimental psychology, industrial psychology, social psychology, abnormal psychology, social statistics for social scientists, social research methods, sociology and anthropology, communications etc. some universities he taught includes the university of Ghana and university of Maiduguri Borno, state, Nigeria.

There couldn't be a better qualified person than a man with a full understanding of the social psychology of our people as chairman of the ruling party to advise and devise strategy and analyze situation reports.

But besides his academic competence, Dr. Kwabena Adjei is even more politically astute. For example from 1978 Dr. Kwabena Adjei was elected council member, Jasikan district council. From 1979 - 81, he was already a parliamentary candidate for the popular front party. 1986, he became PNDC deputy secretary (Volta region).

In 1987, he became PNDC deputy secretary for industries, science and technology. In 1998, he became member of the committee of secretaries ( PNDC cabinet). From 93-96 he was a member of parliament (MP) Biakoye constituency. During this time, he became first deputy majority chief whip and later majority chief whip.

Between 1994 - 2000, Dr. Kwabena Adjei became deputy minister for lands and forestry, became minister for lands and forestry and then majority leader in parliament. From 1997 - 2000, he became cabinet minister for lands and forestry, cabinet minister for food and Agriculture, and majority leader in parliament.

Dr. Kwabena Adjei continued parliamentary work between 2001- 2005 when he became national chairman of the NDC whiles the party remained in opposition. He also became chairman of the GETFUND between 2009-2013. In 2009, he represented the NDC in socialists international meetings in Dakar Senegal, Vienna, Austria, and Budva, Montenegro.

Dr. Kwabena Adjei led the NDC to resurrect from its slumber and shutters in opposition to a sweet marginal electoral victory in 2009. He again led the NDC to retain power in 2012. He has played a neutralist leadership role to ensure that the NDC survives, unites and elaborates itself. He has also delegated functions to and allowed his subordinate officers to enact their roles without hinderance, thereby permitting them to demonstrate their political and other potentials. He has even been conferred the international award of millennium development ambassador by the United Nations, August 2013.

Unless and until someone else within the NDC emerges with credentials more impeccable than that of the affable and easily approachable Dr. Kwabena Adjei, aka Wayo! Wayo!!, I am rooting for him. After all, he has excelled in his role as chairman. He twice achieved the ultimate goal of the party to win, form a government and maintain power. Unless we are looking for a different outcome - electoral defeat and opposition - we cannot reasonably contemplate on changing our chairman, especially not for anyone not even half as qualified as he.

This is the brutal truth - which is that Dr. Kwabena Adjei remain the only one of those clamoring for the position of NDC national chairman - the only one with integrity, the charismatic personality and right attitude, more than adequate experience, cool head and a third dimension thinking abilities to be able to provide a leadership capable of continually undermining the psychology of our desperate political opponents. He is my man, not only of today, but from when the NDC was opposition.

SaCut Amenga-Etego
NDC youth activist

Sent from SaCut's iPad