You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2014 10 08Article 329362

Opinions of Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Columnist: Appiah-Osei, Lawrence

Nana Akufo-Addo Can Never Fight Corruption

When you come to the camp of the New Patriotic Party, three statements ring into the ears of those who want to listen. There are those who say that Ghanaians should vote for Nana Akufo-Addo because he is not corrupt and he has never been corrupt. There are those who say that Ghanaians will not vote for Mr. Alan Kyeremanten because he is corrupt and can’t fight corruption in his government, and then there are those who say, my brother, every Ghanaian politician is corrupt, no matter who.

When you ask a Nana fan why he/she thinks Nana is not corrupt, the only and straight forward answer is that when the government of President Kuffour was leaving office, all the state properties including bungalows and lands were sold at very cheap prices to some members in the NPP, including the Chief Justice. Every prominent NPP minister or MP accepted some properties from the President Kuffour government, except Nana Akufo-Addo.

But did Nana’s refusal to accept some gifts make him capable of fighting corruption? Maybe he is not a greedy bastard but saying he is not corrupt is a different thing altogether. By the way, why would Nana accept a land or bungalow from a previous government after all the wealth bequeathed to him by his late father? Nana inherited lands and houses in Ghana, and at least a house in UK. So why would he accept more lands and bungalows? This is why I say, he is not a greedy bastard, but can he fight corruption? Being corrupt or a greedy bastard are two different things. Example, being a greedy bastard is wanting more of what you already have, at times, at the expense of those who don’t have at all, and being corrupt is dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery. I will not per this article say whether Nana Akufo-Addo is a corrupt politician or not. People already have their perception about that. What I want people to know is whether Nana can fight corruption even as the flag bearer of the NPP.

At the Tamale Congress, the previous National Executives of the NPP led by Jake Obetsebi Lamptey were voted out due to corruption. It was alleged that they sold all the bicycles, motorbikes, and took away cash that belonged to the party. Now, Nana Akufo-Addo was the leader of the party at that time. So why couldn’t Nana stop Jake, Sir John and the rest from corruption? There is an adage which literally says that an old man who sits in the house for little children to eat viper, when viper eaters are counted, the old man is counted as one of them. If Nana could not stop Jake and Sir John from corruption, how could he stop all those ministers he will appoint into his government?

There is also the case that when Nana Akufo-Addo was the Foreign Minister under President Kuffour, 12 diplomatic passports went missing under his watch. The other 11 passports have still not been found but one of those passports ended up in the hands of a Ghanaian cocaine dealer, who was arrested in Singapore. So again, if Nana Addo as a Foreign Minister could not account for all passports in his ministry, how can he, as President, account for all the people in his country? And what will happen if he is elected the ECOWAS Chairman? Definitely, some corrupt practices went on that got the passports missing. Was Nana Akufo-Addo able to identify the corrupt practice and stopped it? If Nana could not trace 12 passports in his ministry, what ministries can he trace as President of Ghana? Probably all the ministries would be gone by the end of his first term. Hopefully, they wouldn’t end up in the hands of cocaine dealers.

There is also the allegation of wild spread of corruption in the President Kuffour’s government, including the mysterious sale of the Discover -511 drip ship and Ghana at 50. At least, in these two allegations of corruption, Nana Akufo-Addo was a major player in the Kuffour administration. As someone who could fight corruption when given the chance, why didn’t Nana Akufo-Addo resign from the government in protest or confront the corruption that was going on so that he will be sacked, just as in the case of Hon. Martin Amidu? I am not saying here that President Atta-Mills government was corrupt. What I mean is Martin Amidu perceived something wrong with an issue and confronted it. Or maybe Nana did not perceive anything wrong with President Kuffour’s government despite all the massive corruption. With what Hon. Martin Amidu did, it is abundantly clear that he is not corrupt and can fight corruption anytime he comes across one. Can the same be said of Nana Akufo-Addo?

Ladies and gentlemen, the elections of 2016 is not about who is corrupt of who is not corrupt. It is about who can fight corruption when he sees one. So far, President John Mahama has proved beyond all reasonable doubts that he is up to the task of fighting corruption in Ghana head-on. Whenever he identifies corruption at a ministry or agency and he begins to uproot it, all what the NPP people say is that why was there corruption in the first place and so President Mahama is corrupt. Meanwhile, most of these corrupt practices have been in existence since Adam and Eve. Take for example the rot at the National Service Secretariat, the ghosts’ names at both Ministries of Health and Education.

Fellow Ghanaians, let us all help the person who has started the good work of uprooting corruption from our beloved country. The one who has started climbing the tree, is the one who is helped to get to the top. The good works of President John Mahama since being legitimized as the President of Ghana in September 2013, is there for all to see. All these good works have been done within one year.

When it comes to fighting corruption, I will say on authority that Nana Akufo-Addo has no record to show even though he had lots of chances to have fought them. We should not make a mistake and give him our destiny just because he is going around saying he is not corrupt and he is not old. If someone really can fight corruption, it doesn’t matter if he or she is the messenger, watchman, secretary or the Chief Executive Officer. The ability to fight will be there and I don’t see that in Nana Akufo-Addo. Nana has never fought corruption and can never fight corruption.

Lawrence Appiah-Osei (Protocol)

Public Relations Officer (PRO)

NDC Washington Metro Branch

Appiah65@Hotmail.com