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Opinions of Sunday, 31 October 2010

Columnist: Abugri, George Sydney

Osofo, Konadu and Mills’s pie

By George Sydney Abugri

I was very rudely yanked from slumber the other dawn by the crackling sound of static from a loudspeaker set to a thousand decibels and the grating voice of a fellow screaming “God loves you. Jesus loves you. Yes I am here to tell you, God loves you...”

The drowsy imp in my skull was furious: Sure. We know God loves us. We know Jesus loves us and that is why He would no doubt appreciate it if you shut the f-k up and let us have a little more shut-eye before the neighbourhood cocks begin to crow.

The chap was no doubt convinced that he was evangelizing the neighbour hood. Maybe he was one of those characters around who have all manner of moral and ethical debris weighing heavily on their conscience and who reckon that with such antics, they might impress God and bribe their way to heaven when they kick the bucket.

Alright, so every Christian has a responsibility to evangelize, but hey, does that mean shattering eardrums and trying to tear down the sky and kill seniour citizens in their beds?

How anyone with the spiritual orientation of a genuine pastor could be so oblivious to the sacredness of the dawn is the puzzle. Dawn is when some night shift workers back home try to get some sleep. For many people it is time for reflection, prayer and devotion. The conditions of old people with all manner of health and ageing problems are worsened by the unbearable noise and interrupted sleep.

President Mills needs to demand that all local government authorities ensure strict compliance with local government bylaws on noise pollution. Poor Professor Mills. Have you heard the news, Jomo?

Mills’s National Democratic Congress has lapsed into self-destruct mode all over and again I would stake a modest wager that the opposition is enjoying ever minute of the bizarre show. An anonymous force in the NDC badly wants a piece of Professor Mills’s executive pie.

There appears to have been a discernibly consistent pattern of orchestration to project Mills as undeserving of a second term and to replace him with someone else at the next NDC primaries:

No sooner has the man been sworn in as president, than Jerry Rawlings embarks upon an unrelenting and consistent regime of bitter criticisms of President Mills and his style of governance to a point where even Mills’s opponents have said “nah, this is not right anyway you look at it.”

Right out of the blue, placards urging former first lady Mrs. Rawlings to run against Mills at the next primaries surfaced on display during anniversary celebrations of June 4 up on the Savanna this year.

Signs that the anti-Mills agitation was gathering steam as the NDC gears up for the next primaries, came in the form of bitter complaints by Rawlings last week, that Mills’s aides have been traversing the land mass of the country dispensing favours and gifts to party supporters, corrupting them and courting their support against him {Rawlings}.

Then all of a sudden, campaign posters advocating the choice of Mrs. Rawlings as the NDC’s presidential candidate for 2012 are displayed across the country. Is she behind the campaign posters? No, her spokesperson assures us. It is only an invitation being extended to her by party foot soldiers.

Well, where did the foot solders reputed to be constantly angry because they are unemployed and hungry, get the money to print the high quality posters in large quantities from? The Eastern Region alone got 15, 000 of the campaign posters! It has been claimed that a gentleman called HM paid for the posters. Who is HM? Darned if I have the slightest clue, old chap.

The founders of the party had established a political philosophy of sorts which incorporated a militant approach to governance and especially a ruthless approach to dealing with corruption and the administration of criminal justice.

The agitation then, is for reclamation of those values by the Rawlings faction, which revival cannot be executed in the near future unless Mills gives way to a more militant personality who sees politics and governance through JJ’s lenses.

The sign language from the agitators in Rawlins’s camp has not been coded: Hey buddy, we expect you to act as a chief cadre. Think tougher, wax tougher, talk tougher and act tougher.

Why have people who unlawfully appropriated public money not been caged yet? Why is Kofi Jack in particular still swaggering around, strutting his stuff and behaving like Freeman in Free Town on World Freedom Day?

In the wake of the crisis, it could be a fatal mistake for President Mills and his advisers not to try to get down to the roots of Mr. Rawlings’s seething discontent. Unless there is much more to Mr. Rawlings’s agitation than the exercise of honest conscience and constructive pursuit of the ultimate good of his party, he should cooperate by stating his case soberly and clearly before his party’s highest executive body.

If his demands contravene conventions of democracy or subvert Mill’s authority as the elected and constitutionally mandated president of the republic they should rightly be chucked out of the window.

He founded the party and remains its most powerful singular force and pillar. If he has grievances that can be addressed in the interest of good governance and his party’s unity, they should be given appropriate attention. That is my take.

There are large numbers of NDC activists across the country who are loyal, products of the grassroots organization and orientation of Rawlings People Defence Committees and Workers Defence Committees of the early 1980s. Many of them who are now in their 40s and 50s have been a major influence on the groups now called the foot soldiers.

Once upon a time, Jomo, the foot soldier was a complimentary and honourable reference to disciplined, hard working party grass roots rank and file

The NDC version of the foot soldier on the other hand, seems to have been created by smart strategists in the NDC with the unwitting connivance and help of the media, to make it possible for large numbers of disappointed and angry NDC activists who rampaged around seizing public facilities and engaging in arson, vandalism and assault to escape judicial sanction.

These crimes were attributed to the anonymous monster called the foot soldier and how can you prosecute a crime without a suspect?

It is the accumulated energy of this loyal and powerful force I believe, that some people in the NDC who are opposed to Millis’s style of governance are trying to harvest and channel into the ”Konadu for president” bid.

Let us go gambling old chap and list the following scenarios in descending order of likelihood should JJ’s missus be the only aspirant to run against Mills: Mrs. Rawlings will win the primaries and go on to win the next elections and become Ghana’s first ever female president!

President Mills gives Konadu a humiliating defeat at the primaries and goes on to win a second term in office. President Mills wins the primaries and goes on to lose the next election to Nana Akufo-Addo of the NPP

Someone yet to be given a face beats Mills and Konadu {if she runs} to win the NDC primaries and goes on to win or lose to Akuffo-Addo! Email: Website: