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Opinions of Sunday, 11 October 2015

Columnist: Asare-Donkoh, Frankie

Nyaho Tamakloe’s Sycophantic and Hypocritical Manoeuvres

Saturday, October 11, 2015



By Dr Frankie Asare-Donkoh

I have always been worried about some of the people in the New Patriotic Party (NPP) giving themselves all kinds of titles - ‘Founding Member’, ‘Leading Member’ ‘Senior Member’ and ‘Elder of the Party’, but behaving in very unacceptable and disgusting ways.

One of such people is Dr. Nyaho Nyaho Tamakloe. He calls himself “a leading member” of the NPP. Going by that title, I have always wondered what makes him a leading member of the NPP when it has been noted that most of his public utterances have been very negative and damaging to the party.

If my memory serves me right, I could say I haven’t seen Nyaho Tamakloe being part of any NPP major activity in a long time. And I wonder how one can be a “leading member” and not get involved in any major activities of the party where leading members are supposed to be involved.

Last Wednesday, he dismissed the “Arise and Build” tour of the NPP flagbearer, Nana Akufo Addo, insisting that “what my party needs at the moment is a very strong, united front and not Rise and Build whatever tour”.

The month-long ‘Rise and Build’ tour was planned to enable Nana Addo meet up with all regional executives, constituency executives, and aspirants in the party’s parliamentary primaries, both winners and losers. It is to prepare the party for a campaign that hopes to energise Ghanaians to help build and restore Ghana onto a path of progress and prosperity.

He added that “a united front is key to success! If we're not united, we should forget 2016, and truly, we're not united! Anyone who will tell you the party is united is not telling you the truth. Rise and build tour is not what will get the party united. If you start such a tour without principal players in the NPP then where are you heading towards?"

Strategy for Power

He also said that “Nana Addo lacks the strategy to clinch power for the NPP in 2016” adding that “by now, he should know certain things that will bring you to power”.

Nyaho Tamakloe also believes the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is doing the right thing whereas the NPP, the party he claims to be a leading member, is not. Listen to him: "Don't think the kind of problem we are going through in Accra is the same problem people in the villages are going through – that's the biggest advantage of the NDC because they are working on the basic things the people need in the villages whiles we are here campaigning in Accra and doing radio politics."

His statement raises a number of questions, and also exposes the hypocrisy of the man, Nyaho Tamakloe. What does he mean by a united party, when he goes out lambasting whatever moves the flagbearer takes? Born on May 7, 1942, Nyaho Tamakloe must be over 73 years now, meaning he is an elder member of the Tamakloe family, at least by age qualification.

So, as an elderly member of the Tamakloe family or the Anlo State, how many times has he brought the issues of the family, or about the Anlo State, or the Awormefia to the media or openly go to the Keta or Anloga markets to discuss them? I’m not sure he would ever do that because he is an older person and would want to behave in the way elder members of a family behave, hence he would try and resolve family issues in the family and not in public.

Therefore, how does Nyaho Tamakloe expect unity in the NPP when he is such a divisive person trying every means to undermine the efforts of the party and the flagbearer? How can the party be united with such behaviours from so-called “leading” members? What efforts has he, as a “leading member” done to bring unity in the party?

It is a common knowledge that Nyaho Tamakloe does not like Nana Akufo Addo. However, any disciplined member of a party turns their loyalty to the party and its leadership once a leader is chosen.

In the United Kingdom, the Labour Party was in distress and disarray after the party’s unexpected defeat in this year’s general election on May 7. Its leader, Ed Miliband, resigned on May 8, only a day after the elections, and a leadership contest immediately began.

Initially, among those contesting for the party leader position, Jeremy Corbyn was the least liked especially by the Parliamentary Party (Labour MPs). Some even said they were putting a strategy in the event that he won, to remove him. However, after Corbyn won in a landslide the whole party, including the MPs have all thrown their weight behind him even though others have different opinions from Corbyn’s.

Lack of Party Interest

Therefore no matter how some NPP members like Nyaho Tamakloe hates Akufo Addo, once he won the presidential primaries with such a majority, what was expected of all genuine party members and the so-called leading members, elders, founding members and the rest was to fully support the party and the flagbearer.

One is not saying that there are no blocs or divisions in political parties. However, in all situations all genuine party members put the interest of the party above their own. This is in fact, what is lacking in the NPP at the moment.

For instance, Dr Arthur Kennedy stays in the United States while party members even at the grassroots level are spending their time and energy for the party’s success, yet he never sees anything good about the party and its leadership. All that he does is to criticise without making any efforts to talk with the party leadership and offer suggestions to them.

Arthur Kennedy contested Nana Addo in the 2008 presidential primaries and lost. Following that he went to the lower level in 2012 and contested for the parliamentary candidate slot at the Abura-Asebu-Kwamankese constituency. He was beaten by Job Acquah Markin with 299 against his 159 votes.

Nana Addo made Arthur Kennedy the Communications Director for his campaign team in the run-up to the 2008 elections. One therefore would have wished to believe that there was a good chemistry running between the two, but many have been surprised by the incessant attacks by Arthur Kennedy on Nana Addo.

I admire Arthur Kennedy’s courage as a man with an independent mind. However, a political party, like any organisation is governed by rules. Therefore one cannot become destructive of the same organisation one claims to love. Unlike Nyaho Tamakloe whose actions indicate clearly he hates Akufo Addo, it’s hard for me to believe that after working with Akufo Addo in a most prominent position as his director of communications, Kobina Arthur Kennedy now hates him.

What are the main reasons for forming political parties? Political scientists argue that political parties are formed to seek power, or a share of it, but, however this can only be achieved when parties first win control or a share of control, of the organs of government.

Therefore no leading member, founding member, elder of party, chairman, secretary, or flagbearer of the NPP can claim to love the party if they work against the first basic goal – winning power or part of it. This is the reason people like Nyaho Tamakloe and Arthur Kennedy must refine their style.

The NPP Council of Elders are busy scheming to move the properly and legally elected party Chairman, Paul Afoko, and General Secretary, Kwabena Agyei Agyepong while Nyaho Nyaho Tamakloe goes on destabilising the party and its election plans.

It’s time the NPP put in an effective strategy to deal with the outbursts of the Nyaho Tamakloes and the likes, to enable the party focus on important issues. At this stage of the party’s history, what is needed is a united front made possible by sensible behaviours and thought-out statements which will make meaningful contributions to the electoral success of the party.

Nyaho Tamakloe cannot claim that he sacrificed more that the grassroots members of the NPP, many of whom walked long distances to campaign for the party and Mr J. A. Kufuor in the 2000 elections, yet he hugely benefited from the party’s success. He was made an ambassador to Serbia and Montenegro. After Nyaho Tamakloe benefitting hugely from the NPP, is that the best way to re-pay the party?

Family Relations

Yes, it’s a fact that President John Mahama is Nyaho Tamakloe’s nephew. Nyaho’s cousin, Joyce Tamakloe, married Mr E. A. Mahama, the current president’s father, whose son is Mr Ibrahim Mahama the well-known brother of President Mahama. Nyaho is also a direct relative of Tsatsu and Kojo Tsikata, all NDC gurus. For these relationships many are now concluding that Nyaho is working for the NDC of his nephew President John Mahama.

It is due to these relationships that many believe Nyaho Tamakloe was able to get his son Ellis Tamakloe, who was jailed for 10 years for drug offence (attempted exportation of cannabis), freed after serving only a few months.

Even the Executive Secretary of the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB), Yaw Akrasi Sarpong, once accused Dr. Nyaho Tamakloe of initiating behind the scenes moves to have his son, Ellis Tamakloe, who is serving jail term released.

Mr Sarpong said: “He is a shameless person. Has he forgotten the time when his son's name was smuggled into the list of people that were going to be released or freed? Has he forgotten the person behind the scene? Your son has been jailed and you go begging people and contacting people, asking as if they can help his son out; he should give me a fucking break…I mean he should give me a break,' he fumed.

So, is Nyaho Tamakloe being sycophantic and hypocritical with his effusions against Akufo Addo just to destroy his campaign and cause his defeat in 2016 while he smoothens the way for his nephew President Mahama?

Well, our elders say the feathers of a dead bird can never remain in the skies, and that they will definitely fall down. They also say, it is only after the death of the frog that we may see its real height. No matter what the Nyaho Tamakloes, Arthur Kennedys, the so-called Council of Elders and others do to damage the NPP and Nana Akufo Addo in the 2016 elections, posterity would find the roles they played and judge them.

*The author is a Political Scientist & Media and Communication Consultant. fasado@hotmail.com