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Opinions of Saturday, 25 June 2011

Columnist: Akoto, Akwasi A. Afrifa

The King Of Koku Hill Is Administratively Paralyzed.

On the throne in Koku Hill once sat a King rumored "to be partially blind, partially deaf" and fully controlled by his courtiers. Although these rumors – ailments- where a part of the Kingdom’s daily gossip, no one was really sure of the truth since the courtiers had been able to stage-managed the King to a point, that would have made Shakespeare’s stage director proud. They brought him out to give speeches, to open new projects, to celebrate the founding of the Kingdom, etc when the need arose. They controlled and filtered news and happenings in the Kingdom that reached the ears of the King.
It so happened that the Kingdom was, yet again, to undertake a massive project by building aqueducts to help bring water from the river to the center of the Kingdom. On the day of the contract signing, the Keeper of the Seals, who had earlier negotiated the contract, was visiting another Kingdom. So the Head of the Royal households, who had a reputation of being a “greedy bastard” and was at loggerheads with the Keeper of the Seals, took advantage of his absence. The Head of the Royal Households, thus, brought in his own contractors with Kingdom wrecking deals to the inner sanctum of the palace. As the King had been clueless since ascending the throne he, as usual, never gave the deal a second thought and was about to sign it when the Keeper of the Seals appeared after a hard day’s ride- his horse collapsing after he dismounted.
A hot argument ensured, with the King helplessly and cluelessly looking on- like a spectator at a tennis match, looking left and then right and then left and then right while the two court officials exchanged words. The King eventually sided with the Keeper of the Seals but only after he had threatened to resign. The original contract was signed saving the Kingdom much needed revenue.
This incident finally convinced the subjects that the King, indeed, was not in control of affairs of State. But they wondered how many such abuses of office had gone on under the inept King and what was to be done about it?

Dear readers, if you think the above is an Ananse story, kindly think again. It happened right under our noses.
According to the Business Analyst, that is exactly what happened at the Osu Castle a few weeks back. In the above allegory, switch the roles of the King, the Keeper of the Seals and the Head of the Royal Households with President Mills, our Energy Minister and the real power brokers at the Castle respectively and you get the exact scenario which played out at the Castle. Our President nearly signed away our oil. Ghanaians‘d have woken up one day to find their oil/gas in total control of foreigners and strangers, with a mere paltry going into the coffers of the Nation.
“The schemers, using influential lobbyists and some “Castle Officials” to promote their agenda, hatched the plot on the minister’s blind side, as he was said to have learned about the contract he was to sign upon his return from the trip abroad the day before the proposed signing date. The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) was also kept in the dark about the activities of its “partners” and was not invited to the signing ceremony. The Minister of Energy, was, however, reported to have stood his ground and blocked the deal to the embarrassment of the global chief executives of the two companies, who had flown into Accra for the proposed signing ceremony at the Castle,” wrote the Business Analyst.
Ask yourself, fellow Ghanaians, does it look like a President who is in control of State affairs or is aware of what is happening around him? Was he – is he- aware that our Vice President managed to get a ban lifted off Cocoa smuggling Company after having dinner with the company’s official? Is he aware that his party chairman has put up two mansions since he took over? Is he aware of the fact that a foreign company, TAQA, bribed his ministers and officials, according to court documents? Is he aware that the many projects that he had cut sods for cost as much as 200% above the expected expenditure? Is he even aware that the STX deal is dead?
About a year ago, the Generational Youth Movement (GYM), a pressure group, wrote an article- or should I say sounded a warning- that some powerful forces at the Castle were in control of President Mills. GYM wondered why the President, who professed to be “father for all”, had failed to comment on certain important issues in the country then. I was skeptical then. But after reading the Business Analysis article and republished by pro – government newspaper, the Daily post, plus the President’s silence on many issues facing the country, I ‘m more than convinced now that, indeed, the President has no idea what is going on in the country. And if I were you, I‘d very very afraid for Mother Ghana. For a President who is unaware of the happenings in his country is more dangerous than “Alhaji Idi Amin Dada, Field Marshal, VC, DSO, KBE, the Conqueror of the British Empire.”

Akwasi A. Afrifa Akoto.