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Opinions of Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Columnist: Abugri, George Sydney

Presidential hopefuls, voting and my brand new personality

I have just got me a brand new personality, complete with genetically re-evolved physical and psychological characteristics. Gone for example is my other face, the one someone once said was of Africa. In its place, is a creased mask, whose premature lines fur¬row the strain of carrying my daily cross.

I recoiled in horror the other day when this total stranger leapt out at me from the reflective glass of the morning mirror. When I mut¬tered, "who be diz", the imp in my skull sniggered: That is you buddy, who else?

I have forgotten how to smile. Any attempt begets a grimace. I do not remember how to fly a joke either, or rather when I do fly one, it is usually a sour, caustic and cyn¬ical one packing quite an acidic and corrosive bite. No, I do not joke these days.

I am a very serious bloke now: Short-tempered, very irrita¬ble and all emotionally and psycho-logically wired up to a short fuse. Mess about with me, especially in an election year, and I will bite off your head.

I walk around these days bearing forth before me, a seething anger like an unexploded bomb and would gladly take some of it out on the Electoral Commis¬sioner. Why has she allowed a multitude to try piling into the presidency and in the process getting herself and the rest of us into such a state of legal bother?

It all reminds me of an African¬-American friend of mine called Jim Minnard. 1 once overheard Jim mumbling in his sleep: "I is gonna build me a big space ship ...”

If you ignore the curious grammar, you might be struck by the pleasant reali¬zation that fantasizing and noon dreaming never did anyone any harm and is cer¬tainly not contrary to any¬thing in the criminal code.

All the same, you cannot help but won¬der what is really up with some of these guys who would be President. Is it so that they can later "savour" the "prestige" of being referred to as "the presidential candi¬date in this or that election?"

In one previous presidential elec¬tion, two candidates each obtained 0.1 per cent of the vote and a third, 0.3 per cent. I won’t go into any competition from which I am likely to emerge carrying that kind of score!

On second thoughts, mathe¬matics always leaves a modest margin for error and for some bit of doubt, so then, what if my almighty thesis is all wrong? What if one of these electoral jesters somehow manages to run for president and goes on to win?

Let me explain why such a scenario might not be as outrageous as you might think: You see, there is this view that at the presidential election, the majority of voters in this country vote for a political party, and not the presidential candi¬date at all. As far as party faithful are concerned, the presiden¬tial candidate of their party is all right, as long as he has been settled upon at the primaries.

It would appear then, that in such an electoral envi¬ronment, a presidential candi¬date may lose, not because voters have rejected him as presi¬dential material, but because even voters who might have voted for him, voted instead for their party's candidate out of partisan loyalty.

It is bad news for Pan¬-Africanists around the world, if you ask me, but the' truth is that, the Nkrumaist political family in Ghana has remained splintered beyond unity. Look at the fragments along the trail to date: The NCP, PHP, NIP, PNC, PPP and a CPP whose name offers nothing other than painful nostalgia.

The Nkrumahist family is out of serious reckoning, thanks to the conspiracy years ago, of those who have never concealed their hatred of Nkrumah's legacy and who worked hard to dismember the CPP.

Greater thanks still, to the inability of successive leaders of the party to creatively adapt the Osagye-fo's vision to suit the demands of the changing times and end the selfish, ambition-driven and often pointless bickering and disagree¬ments, that have all but kept the party stuck in an electoral rut for years!