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Opinions of Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Columnist: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

NPP is still deeply divided

The part of President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s historic address to the most recent New Patriotic Party’s Delegates’ Conference in Koforidua, the capital of the Eastern Region, dealing with the passing of former Vice-President Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, was a matter of formality.

Even so, as is characteristic of his inimitable flair for dignified diplomacy, the tribute was delivered with great passion, solemnity, sensitivity, as well as sincerity in a manner that ought to have made the Amissah-Arthur Family get some genuine solace, and even comfort, from the same in a way that they likely have not gotten from the largely desultory and perfunctory effusions of the leaders of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) who, by the way, have made an unenviable name for themselves for cynically making epic political capital out of using occasions of the passing of some leaders of the party to solicit undeserved sympathy for their hardnosed Social Darwinian economic policies (See “Akufo-Addo’s Full-Speech at NPP Delegates’ Conference” MyJoyOnline.com / Modernghana.com 7/7/18).

But the part of the speech that particularly resonated with me, had to do with the no-punch-pulling admission by the President of the at once sobering and embarrassing fact that the New Patriotic Party (NPP)) continues to be tormented by sworn internal detractors as well as being divided along bipolar factional lines. I guess one could even quite understandably observe that the NPP may very well be as well divided along sub-ideological lines.

What was also especially significant to note about the dastardly attempt by the infamous Afoko Gang to luridly and adamantly truck with the mortal political and ideological opponents of the progressive forces within the New Patriotic Party, was the fact that the legal and deliberate removal of three of the topmost administrators of the party, namely, Messrs. Paul Awentami Afoko, Kwabena Agyei Agyepong and Sammy Crabbe, could not have redounded more to the good fortune of genuine adherents of the Danquah-Busia-Dombo Tradition.

Deafeningly unspoken but unmistakably clear was the sustained signal to the internal traitors and saboteurs of the party that they would be fiercely resisted and relentlessly fought off wherever and whenever they rear their ugly heads.

Which, of course, neatly tied in with the President’s solemn and progressive call for party delegates gathered at Koforidua’s Hotel EREDEC to ensure that only the most unimpeachably patriotic and forward-looking candidates for executive office in the party were voted into power. And lo and behold, Nana Akufo-Addo could not have reaped a better result.

Still, what really humored me to no mean measure was the announcement by Mr. Peter Mac Manu, the former NPP’s National Chairman and Nana Akufo-Addo’s Campaign Anchor going into Election 2016, that the legal and legitimate ban imposed on the members of the Afoko Gang by the party’s Supreme Council, as well as the Council-of-Elders, which had been in force for a little over two years now, if memory serves yours truly accurately, had finally and officially been lifted; and that Messrs. Afoko, Agyepong and Sammy Crabbe and their diehard Anti-Akufo-Addo associates could henceforth actively participate in any functions and activities either organized or sponsored by the New Patriotic Party.

Once again, what had been deftly left unsaid was actually what Mr. Mac Manu meant. Which is that as long as the diehard operatives of the Afoko Gang posed an implacable threat to the fortunes of progressive-minded Ghanaian citizens, they were not welcome to unconscionably, recklessly and cynically prosecute the same under the auspices, the name or insignia of the New Patriotic Party.

Indeed, what is inescapably unsettling is the fact that nearly two years into the most progressive government ever to be democratically voted into power by well-meaning and forward-looking Ghanaians, the New Patriotic Party continues to be deeply divided between the pro-Akufo-Addo and pro-Kufuor factions.

That, of course, is a veritable part of the legacy of former President John Agyekum-Kufuor that Nana Akufo-Addo may need to table among the list of top-priority problems to be resolved in the offing. They may not want or like to hear this: but the glaring fact of the matter is that the one stand-out stumbling block threatening the long staying power of the New Patriotic Party is the seemingly intractable sub-culture of entrenched factionalism that clearly appears to have taken Okomfo-Anokye-Sword-Like grips of the party.

Ultimately, however, the topmost priority of the Akufo-Addo Administration must be the rapid and radical transformation of Ghana’s economy and collective national technological know-how. There are absolutely no other viable alternatives to the long-term survival and prosperity of both present-day Ghanaians and their descendants. I have, however, deliberately elected to sidestep the visceral bread-and-butter issue regarding the state of our national economy, except to heartily congratulate the leaders of the Akufo-Addo team of crackerjack technocrats, among them, Messrs.

Kenneth Ofori-Atta, Yaw Osafo-Maafo and Drs. Owusu Afriyie-Akoto and Mahamudu Bawumia, who also deftly doubles as Ghana’s substantive Vice-President. That statistically speaking, the living standard of the Ghanaian people has trebled over the dismal level bequeathed by the Mahama/Amissah-Arthur regime, ought to come as good news to all levelheaded and civically responsible Ghanaians. Make no mistake: we are not quite out of the woods yet, no, not by any stretch of the imagination. But we are fast getting to our most desired designation destination, nonetheless.

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