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Opinions of Monday, 1 October 2012

Columnist: Ayeboafo, Yaw Awuah Boadu

President Mahama must walk his talk

The saying goes that talk is cheap. Unfortunately our political leadership under the NDC exemplifies this saying. Time and again we’ve been assured as a Nation by the ruling NDC’s commitment to law and order especially as we approach election 2012. However, when the opportunity arises for us to see their real commitment to their talk they fail.
In President Mahama’s Critical Policy Actions document, he assures the Nation of “safe and secure environment” in order to protect “life, limb and property” as we “politic and vote.” The President’s dead-silence on the leaked tape of Yaw Boateng Gyan that purports to scheme and strategize on how to recruit fake security officers and procure them with genuine National Security Identification cards to terrorise and intimidate political opponents is therefore worrying. What makes the President’s silence and commitment to peace more worrying is the response from his National Security Coordinator that sanctions that the tape recording is not worth investigating as it has no national security implications.
Moreover, subsequent justifications of the shameful tape recording by personalities like the General secretary of the NDC, Asiedu Nketia and Presidential Staffer, Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, to the effect that there is nothing wrong for a political party to recruit its supporters into the security agencies further complicates the President’s silence. Is President Mahama in tacit support of these senior functionaries of his government’s position on the Yaw Boateng Gyan’s tape?
It’s laughable the President commends the National Peace Council in his document for its efforts at maintaining peace and urges them to “proactively identity trouble spots ahead of the elections and address any security concerns in those places through dialogue and mediation.” Yet, recently when civil society groups and some clergy identified the impending expansion of the number of constituencies as potential trouble spot ahead of the December elections, the heavens broke loose. The barrage of insults and criticisms raised on them were unimaginable by notable personalities within the NDC. They sought to prevent the clergy from taking part in such national debate, urging them to remain in the pulpit with some even resigning from a church they held no membership. Even though the President apologised for the level of criticisms his men subjected the clergy to, those men showed no remorse and he failed to reprimand them.
Indeed, so many examples abound where the leadership of the NDC say one thing while notable members behave otherwise without any sanction or reprimand. Ghanaians should be sceptical when president Mahama says he is“…committed to moving this country further and further away from the politics of vindictiveness and the winner takes all mentality” as the contrary is the case.
As we approach the elections, Ghanaians should carefully analyse President Mahama’s commitment to his talk in order not to be deceived again.

Yaw Awuah Boadu Ayeboafo,