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Opinions of Sunday, 10 July 2011

Columnist: Kyei-Mensah-Osei, Kofi

The NACOB Boss’ Ranting: Is He Schizophrenic or Was He “high” on Drugs?

As an individual, I have always found it very difficult to understand the NDC in many ways. They have no clear-cut programmes and their modus operandi have always been suspect and chameleonic. No wonder after 2 and half years in office, the President is yet to initiate a single policy that he can call his own. This is a party which won power on blackmail, innuendos, character assassination, propaganda and lies. Readers should not forget the lies about the infamous “tapes” the NDC used for their campaign. They didn’t announce a single programme and today, haven’t initiated one. Ghanaians have belatedly come to the realisation that the so-called “tapes” were calculated lies just to win power!!

It now appears that the NDC, sensing that the “tapes” they made hay with have run their course (no pun intended) and have gone with a huge chunk of the little credibility the party is left with; seek to create a diversion from their incompetence. In their desperation, they pushed Yaw Akrasi Sarpong, a hardcore NDC-ist who also doubles as the NACOB boss into the controversial cocaine saga which has become an albatross on our necks. In his haste to please his paymasters, and perhaps wearing a sheepish grin on his face, Akrasi Sarpong jumped into the fray and unfortunately landed with a thud. His appointment as NACOB boss is meant to be apolitical but sorry; Akrasi Sarpong’s schizophrenic raving and ranting Joy Fm would deceive no one about his political leanings let alone to depoliticise his comments. He deserves all the bashing he is receiving; yours truly though, do not intend to do same with this piece. That Yaw Akrasi Sarpong, a former appointee of erstwhile PNDC government and current NACOB boss stirred the hornets’ nest when he said in his interview last week with Joy FM that his outfit “…has ample evidence indicating that some politicians intend to finance their campaign activities in the 2012 general elections with proceeds from narcotic trade” and that they were not going to allow that happen; cannot be contested by dumbest political ostrich. I do not begrudge Akrasi Sarpong for his political views or affiliations. Personally, I would rather people declare their affiliations rather than hide behind the cloak of ‘political neutrality’ to cast needless innuendos or pass opprobrious comments at certain individuals. The above notwithstanding though, Akrasi Sarpong cannot convince even his wife that he wasn’t making a political statement as he deliberately cast aspersions at certain political figures.

That the NDC, having miserably failed to initiate a single policy to date, continue to rule with pure propaganda and an innuendo is as sure as the night follows the day. I wonder why they always claim to have something in their possession which always turns out to be a hoax anyway. This has become a common occurrence under President Mills’ presidency. After Ghanaians have become fed up with the cacophonous tunes from the various NDC “tapes” (Ya-Na, Giselle Yadji etc), it is interesting for Akrasi Sarpong to come out at this time with a “list” of politicians who fund their political campaigns with “proceeds from narcotics”. It makes you wonder whether the man knows what he is paid with the poor tax payer’s money to do. Perhaps he forgets he is paid to arrest these drug peddlers and help the nation to prosecute them by presenting hard evidence and not to broadcast “….a list….” based on the hearsays of malicious individuals with fiendish motives. The last time I checked, money laundering was a serious crime that could cost the offender a long prison sentence. Since Akrasi Sarpong and his outfit have “….ample evidence that some politicians intend to finance their campaign activities…… with proceeds from narcotic trade”, why wouldn’t they go ahead and cause their arrest since a crime has already been committed? Why has he chosen to warn those individuals on radio for them to take cover? Is Akrasi Sarpong implying that those people have to invest the “proceeds from narcotic trade” in their “campaign activities” before they could be arrested? Why would he and his outfit wait for 2012 political campaign before causing the arrest of those on his “list”? The above and many other salient questions are being asked by people who have the country at heart whereas some “greedy bastards” are touting his hot-air on “Joy FM” as an achievement. His hysterical raving and ranting sounded rather schizophrenic; more like someone “high” on some hard drugs. It wouldn’t surprise me one jack if his name pops up on his “list”.

Drug trafficking is a serious international canker and countries world wide take it seriously. It is a hydra-headed menace and agencies to set up to track those involved in the trade are manned by professionals intent on dishing out a devastating blow to the barons. They don’t put on this clown-on-circus show that Akrasi Sarpong made of himself the other day. This man should have been sacked as soon as the interview ended with Joy FM. Why should he be in haste to make those pronouncements on radio knowing that his investigation was inconclusive? A clear case of placing the cart before the horse and that is very wise indeed! Who did he seek to please? Or was his radio pronouncements coded messages to the barons who he may be in cohort with to take cover? Many people have come out to challenge him to name and shame those individuals but like a toothless bulldog that he is, Akrasi Sarpong could only tag his tail between his legs and hid behind a silly comment like; “investigation is on-going” whilst also reiterating in his subsequent interviews that that nobody “could force him to produce...” the list. Ghana and the entire West African sub-region has unfortunately become the hub of drug trafficking on the African continent and dealing with the canker requires practical approach aimed at stemming the tide of drug flow on our seas and onto our shores rather than the empty rhetoric of the NACOB boss.

With this amateurish approach of the NACOB boss, the drug traffickers will be laughing all the way to their stash. No wonder people are being arrested in various countries with cocaine after leaving the shores of Ghana. To come out with a statement like that and at the time he did shows that the man is either damn incompetent or genuinely hasn’t got a clue. Just 15 months ago, 10 Ghanaians were arrested at New York’s JFK Airport for drug trafficking after departing Ghana through KIA for the USA. As recently as last December, “Wiki-Leaks” report came out that way back in 2009, just after 1 year in office, “the President of Ghana worried about members of his entourage smuggling drugs out of the country.” Where was the NACOB boss then? What did Akrasi Sarpong say or do in October 2010 when 2 “drug dealers” were arrested but had to be released when NDC “bigwigs” intervened? This was even confirmed by Regional Police Commander of the Western Region DCOP Hamidu Mahama. These few examples are but a tip of the iceberg. If Akrasi Sarpong wants to play politics with his position, it is up to him but he should take my free advice that he has opened himself up for some powerful radar guided verbal scud missiles to come his way especially, as he consciously or sub-consciously sought to denigrate the characters of a certain section of the political divide. Ghanaians are sick and tired of “tapes” and certainly don’t want to hear about any concocted “list”. Akrasi Sarpong should put out the names of the drug dealers on his “list” now to show that he has 2 big balls between his legs to take on the drug dealers after all, that is what Ghanaians want to see and that is what he is paid to do. Empty threats and vain propaganda is not what we need from the NACOB boss. In countries like Colombia, Mexico, Brazil and other country with serious drug related problems, their designated agencies do not deal with such those matter on radio. In fact it is not done anywhere in the world. It’s rather a covert operation with hi-tech in-depth intelligence. Let Akrasi Sarpong go ahead and pat himself on the back for barking out like rabies infested dog on radio whilst the NDC applaud him for a good work. Posterity would surely judge him after the end of his term. For now though, Ghanaians await the day he will announce the names on his “list”. We’ve had enough of his blubbing! Exit “tapes” and enter, “list”. Ghana politics? Na waa ooo! What a comic relief!!!

Kofi Kyei-Mensah-Osei