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Opinions of Monday, 18 March 2013

Columnist: Ayeboafo, Yaw Awuah Boadu

Ghana under the spell of Mr. Mahama

Ghana is on a risky and an uncertain trip down the cliff. The heightened risk we face is due to the erratic spells and flippant nature of the man in charge, disputed president Mahama.
Its unimaginable his self-confessed childhood problems of indecisiveness and flip flopping are still with him and Ghanaians are the victims.
Mr. Mahama's state of indecisiveness is recently bemoaned by his gay activist friend as “double talk”. Mr. or Mrs. Andrew Solomon is widely alleged to have raised sponsorship for Mr. Mahama's presidential campaign with a promise that he'd promote gay rights in Ghana under a ministry for social protection. He creates the ministry however with wide condemnation and public criticism of his relationship with Solomon. Mr. Mahama through his information minister categorically denied any relationship apart from being MC for his book launch. The denial did not sit well with the gay lobbyist, forcing Mr. Mahama to apologize on phone to him and later acknowledging the extent of their relationship but “does not subscribe to homosexualism and will not take any step to promote homosexualism in Ghana.”
The disputed president’s position on gay rights in the statement might have incited Solomon. Probably given what he had been told earlier before the elections, the creation of the social protection ministry and on phone just after the public denial of their relationship. He decided to go down with a publication in the New York Times to rebuke Mr. Mahama by spilling the beans, the extent of their relationship, and expressing doubt about his decisiveness and finally entreating him to seize the “occasion to take a leadership role in the region on L.G.B.T. rights.” Mr Mahama is yet to tell Ghanaians whether he has already taken his friends advice or not.

The just announced reshuffle of regional ministers who were appointed just about four weeks ago is utter display of crass ineptitude, indecisiveness, incompetence and complete waste of the resources of the state by disputed president Mahama. The ministerial reshuffle is yet another testimony of the disputed president's indecisiveness, lack of wit and idea to push Ghana forward. While I do not intend to question the power of the president to appoint, reshuffle and dismiss notwithstanding the dispute over his legitimacy.
The statement announcing the reason for the reshuffle of the regional ministers demands serious critique in the contest of appointments made so far and the responsibility of the president as enshrined in the fourth republican constitution. When did it occur to him to use his appointments “…as a measure to foster national unity, integration and cohesion…..”? Can the disputed president and his advisors prove to Ghanaians his appointed public office holders and sector ministers reflect his constitutional duty to ensure “…reasonable regional and gender balance in recruitment and appointment to public offices” as enshrined under the Directive Principles of State Policy of the constitution?
Indeed, a critical appraisal of his appointments shows an agenda to promote ethnicity, tribalism sectionalism and nepotism. Let Mr. Mahama know that his intention is already conveyed to the Ghanaian and cannot by hindsight use this reshuffle to change the perception formed about him. He cannot spin his display of indecisiveness, ignorance and nepotism with the reshuffle. The statement by his executive secretary is laughable and portrays their collective lack of knowledge or neglect of his duty under the constitution about appointments to public office. There's nothing really new regarding the statement accompanying the reshuffle except that, in my view it fell short acknowledging his disregard for the constitution of Ghana.
He should had apologized to Ghanaians for his crass display of ignorance and ineptitude following further with a reshuffle of his sector ministerial and other appointments to conform to his duty under the constitution of Ghana. The hasty reshuffle of the regional ministers is a knee jerk reaction to create the impression his administration aims to enhance national cohesion and cover his nepotism agenda.
I believe Ghanaians do not care who their presidents appoint to serve the nation in so far as they qualify and are Ghanaians. It seems the reshuffle is out of guilty conscience given the constant and unjustified criticism of the NPP by the NDC as always dominated by people with Akan decent. It is significant to do a head count of the appointments by Mr. Mahama, people with northern decent and that of former president Kufour with Akan decent in context to the relative population of the tribes in Ghana. This analysis will even be more significant if we take into account the relative population figures of the ministers’ ethnicities in relation to the total population of Ghana.

The future of Ghana seems very bleak under the leadership of Mr. Mahama and his NDC if his vision is as captured in the reshuffle. The continuous hardships in Ghana under his disputed leadership show Ghana is on a deadly voyage down the cliff until it is saved by the Supreme Court.

Yaw Awuah Boadu Ayeboafo Tepa-Ashanti