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Opinions of Sunday, 29 November 2009

Columnist: Acquaye, Emmanuel

Nana to be shocked again

An Akan proverb that best describes the arena of politics is the one that says ˜Agoro ne fom". It captures aptly the game of Politics in that, no matter the level of self deception one engages in, it is on the decisive day that the chickens would come home to roost.

Indeed the NPP Presidential Primaries is just about 4months from now and I have heard a lot of so called academic analysts and analysis looking at the race from their own parochial views. Any critical look at such analysts and analysis points to them as just means of self glorification and Self Deception but as the Akan proverb earlier quoted states ˜Agoro ne fom.

One interesting piece of Self Deception I read was titled ‘NANA WOULD FLOOR ALAN K, AGAIN’, this piece for me did nothing but attempted to put out very cheap lies in an intellectual manner. The said piece raised a number of factors which to the author meant that Alan Kyeremanteng would be no match for Nana Akufo-Addo in the upcoming Presidential race. First of all, I believe that if this portrayal was to be so then the author wouldn’t have worried himself putting up such a long article. The mere fact that it was written it self indicates that the Akufo-Addo camp is not as comfortable as they would want every one to believe. Such discomfort obviously is not based on dreams or fantasies but on the realities on the ground.

Though the deception is quite clear to everyone who read the article with a bit of sternness, I would still like to debunk the points raised in that particular piece so that its deceptive agenda is fully exposed. To begin with, the author stated that Alan Kyeremanteng was supported by the then President and Government and implied that, Mr. Alan Kyeremanteng gained unfair advantages over the other candidates. The author even went ahead to calculate mysteriously and ‘voodooishly’ how President Kufuor contributed 500 votes to the over 700 received by Mr.Kyeremanteng. But what are the facts aside these voodooish statements? I remember that prior to the December 2007 congress, honourable Nana Akufo-Addo was asked on several platforms about a perceived support by the then President for Honourable Kyeremanteng and Nana Addo reiterated on all such occasions that there was no such support from the President for any candidate. My question is if Nana Addo denied such rumours then who from his camp can say otherwise? Indeed if those on Nana’s side continue to insist on such contradictions then they are doing a very negative job of portraying Nana Addo as a liar or at worse as someone who cant stick to the truth and one who does not say it as it is. This portrayal by Nana’s own camp would make him very unhappy obviously or maybe it is because Nana Addo and his camp believe that by making political capital out of a certain unfair advantage Alan once had, Nana’s political fortunes would be enhanced or at best he can find a way to divert attention from his defeat at the National Polls,

With the first fallacy exposed, I move on to the second. The second most laughable point made was that Nana Addo appealed to the majority of Party ranks and the Nation at large. Hahaha! How laughable can the game of politics get? How can anyone appeal to a majority of people and yet fail to win the support of such a majority? This is really interesting and can only take place in the logic of Nana Addo’s supporters. Less we forget, this was a major argument the same people made prior and after December 2007 and we all saw how true it was in December 2008. The best way to test appeal of an individual is to put him on the ballot which was done to Nana Addo yet he was found to be woefully unappealing. It therefore baffles me how anyone doing an intellectual analysis can state without fear or shame that Nana Akufo-Addo appeal to majority of Ghanaians. Quickly, they would say ‘but he won the flagbearership’? Yet he still couldn’t cross the 50%+1 margin; when J.A. Kuffuor appealed to the NPP we all saw the type of victories he secured, and same for Prof. Adu- Boahen. Nana Addo after all the touted experience and right of inheritance still could not obtain majority of the votes even after all the machinations, lies, insults and intimidation. Nana Addo’s appeal is clearly questionable both within the Party and especially Nationally.

Also, the author mentioned that Nana Addo had worked hard for the Party, had been selfless and was experienced in the workings of the Party, therefore, he would floor Alan. Clearly, the only explanation to such a ridiculous statement is that the author in his haste to spew out lies did not even have time to consult his Political Godfathers on the role a person like Alan Kyeremanteng has played for the great Osono tradition. I am not here to list the contributions of Alan because it would be a waste of paper doing that as it is obvious to all who wish to see and also for the mere fact that some people have just decided not to see any such contribution, no matter how obvious it is. I would have left such statements unattended to but I am responding because of the potential damage such statement could have on the Party rank and file. Why are we saying that everyone should be on the frontline? Are we saying that those like myself and many thousand others who prefer to work backstage are not important? Are we saying that just because someone is seen most and heard loudest means that that person is working most? Obviously not and the earlier we clear such dangerous implications the better for all of us! As a person, I would have been very worried if I were to be one of the numerous people working behind the scenes for Nana Akufo-Addo because such statements mean that even in the unlikely instance of him winning power, I would be sidelined because I wasn’t on the Radio, TV, newspapers etc. even though I might have contributed much more than all the loudmouths.

The article also talked about sacrifice for the Party and how some have suffered for the Party and have been rewarded; my question is- is Akufo-Addo and his camp now saying that he Akufo-Addo is the one who has suffered most for the Party? And what is this fixation with trying to undermine everyone’s contribution in the Party just to glorify Akufo-Addo? What about the millions of unsung heroes in our Party who do not even wish to be acknowledged? In any case if that is the argument then I believe that there shouldn’t have been any congress in 2007; straightforward, we should have given the flagbearership to someone like the late R.R. Amponsah who was still alive then or J.H. Mensah who is still alive. Sacrifice is most important and the sacrifices of personalities like B.J Da Rocha, R.R. Amponsah, J.H. Mensah, John Agyekum Kufuor, Nana Akufo-Addo, Alan Kyeremanteng, Dan Botwe etc. etc. can never be underestimated but as we all know and should know, the flagbearership and Presidential race is much more than that! In the predicament and suffering Ghanaians find themselves in. Our major preoccupation should be who can best win us power! A task akufo-Addo has so far proven incapable of.

Now let me move to why Alan Kyeremanteng is best to win us power unlike Nana Addo. But before the General elections in 2012, there is the flagbearership race next year and I am of the strongest conviction that with the thoughts flowing in the NPP at the moment, Alan Kyeremanteng would emerge clearly as the flagbearer. I arrived at this conclusion especially looking at the circumstances surrounding Nana Addo’s election as flagbearer in 2007 and the whole Presidential Primaries of that same year.

First of all only a liar would deny the fact that by far Alan Kyeremanteng was the most popular candidate. This popularity juxtaposed against the fact that he was running against so called old and experienced people in the NPP who did not lose any opportunity of reminding us how old they were in the Party. In just a couple of months after declaring his intention to contest, Alan had become the favourite to win the race and it was then that all sorts of machinations came in to prevent a humiliation of the so called old folks. At the race progressed it became obvious that Alan Kyeremanteng was running against the 16 other candidates with almost all trying to pull him down in all sorts of directions. After all these machinations, Alan was still poised to become flagbearer until even on the day of the vote till the unproven allegation of Vote Buying on the grounds of the Congress was raised. This was a tactic of desperation that swung the voting trend.

I would not like to go on and on about issues that occurred 2 years ago as others in the Akufo-Addo camp would like to do due to the fact that today we are faced with different challenges in the Party and also as a result of the change in Party structure and thinking. Today, there is a realization that the Party might have followed false sentiments in December 2007 and made a mistake of choosing a wrong candidate who sent us to opposition after 8 years of Great Governance by the Kufuor administration. What makes our defeat worse is the fact that Nana Addo lost to a prolific loser like John Atta Mills, who couldn’t even win in 2000 when the whole state machinery was deployed in his support. The NPP is thus desperate to right the wrongs so as to win back power and continue with the type of leadership under President Kufuor that was applauded globally.

With Nana’s failure to prove his popularity at the National Level, even though he had all he needed to do so, the NPP has been left with no option but to get a truly popular personality who would lead us to victory; we are tired of taking chances! In looking for a desirable personality to lead us to victory, Alan Kyeremanteng comes on top and appeals best to the current decision makers of the Party i.e. the grassroots. Why? Someone would ask. Alan first of all appeals to the current electorate of the Party as he was the only candidate in 2007 to meet all the Polling Station chairmen across the country while others met only Constituency executives. Indeed when Alan was meeting polling Station chairmen, many who are now claiming to love the grassroots mocked him and chastised him for running an extravagant campaign by wasting resources on Polling station chairmen who had no vote. Apart from afore mentioned point showing the visionary nature of Alan Kyeremanteng and his political astuteness it also proves clearly who really loves the grassroots and who it was that thought about them first. No level of deception would change this fact. The 20,000+ polling station chairmen across the country are certainly aware of the contribution of Alan Kyeremanteng to them and his true respect for them since he showed it even before they were enfranchised. History is also on the side of Mr. Alan Kyeremanteng. J.A Kufuor run in ’92 and lost but when he run again in ’96 against the previous flagbearer, Prof. Adu-Boahen, he won. Nana Akufo-Addo run in ’98 and lost , when there was no President Kufuor in the contest he won; but after sending us to opposition, history would repeat itself and Alan Kyeremanteng would emerge as flagbearer. In our Party all runner-up’s win at second attempt especially if he runs against a flagbearer who gave us electoral defeat. Am sure that had Nana Addo run and lost in ’95, he would have beaten J.A. Kufuor in ’98.

Aiding Alan in his bid is the fact that there is a vivid recognition within the NPP that we lost thousands of votes to the NDC primarily because of Nana Addo’s personality, image and attitude in the campaign. Apart from the personality problems, Nana Addo made many unpardonable mistakes as flagbearer which cost us the election and most of us in the NPP are aware of this fact. Above all Alan Kyeremanteng appeals to the youth and young who fortunately form majority of the Party’s electorate and the wider national electorate. Unless anyone can prove to me how a 70 year old can appeal better to the young than a 55 year old, then this fact makes it obvious that if the NPP are serious about reclaiming power then the best man to lead us is Mr. Alan Kwadwo Kyeremanteng. The time would surely come and we would see who would emerge victorious. Until then let those gladdened by self glorification and deception continue in that direction.

Emmanuel Acquaye

Graduate Student

UCC -Cape Coast