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Opinions of Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Columnist: Appiah-Osei, Lawrence

The NPP Has Demonstrated Against Dumsor. Now What?

I was a student at Sunyani Technical Institute in the mid-70s and the school used to feed us 4 times a day. They gave us snacks early in the morning. Breakfast at around 10.00am, lunch and then dinner. The breakfast was porridge/tea, bread with either jam, butter or groundnut paste. Those who were in that school at that time will remember this. Those were the days of studies and happiness. No need for gari.
One morning when we were expecting our normal snacks, they never came. That continued for some days and then the jam, butter and groundnut paste for breakfast also stopped coming. That also continued for some days and so the student leadership decided to do something about it; to go on a demonstration.
One day when we went for breakfast, the Senior Prefect and the Dining Hall Prefect stood in the middle of the main hall and announced that no one should touch the food and that we were all marching straight to the Regional Office. We presented our petition to both the Regional Minister and the Regional Head of Education. Just so you know, I was not a student leader but I was one of the organizers of that demo. After the demonstration, the student leaders held constant dialogue with the Offices of the Regional Minister and the Regional Head of Education. Within days, our snacks and the balanced breakfast meal were restored, and when we came back to school from vacation, we had a new Principal.
We had an effective demonstration which yielded good results because of six things the leadership did. Now compare that to the demonstrations the NPP are doing now, and then judge for yourself if the NPP are demonstrating to achieve good results or they are just making their usual noise. The cardinals of our demonstration were:
1. We had effective and smart leaders who knew what they wanted to achieve once we went on a demonstration. They did not want us to make noise to disturb the peace in Sunyani.
2. There were constant dialogue between the student leadership and the Offices of the Regional Minister and Education. The more they dialogued, the closer they got to solutions.
3. The student leadership offered alternative solutions to the Offices of the Regional Minister and Education. The Regional Minister realized that what the students started to say made sense.
4. The grievances we presented to the authorities were all new to them. They had no idea that our snacks, jam, butter, groundnut paste were all gone. Our studies and happiness were taken away.
5. We had student leadership who were respected by the authorities and who cared about the welfare of the students. They made sure we did not make noise through the principal streets of Sunyani but that we were going to achieve better results.
6. We got the exact things we wanted through an effective demonstration. That is, our good food were restored to normalcy within days and through dialogue and alternative solutions, our Principal was replaced. At the end of the day, every student gave credit to the student leadership.
Ladies and gentlemen, can we say the same things about the demonstrations the NPP are having now?
1. Can we say the NPP has effective and smart leaders who know what they want to achieve through these demonstrations, except to make noise and cause confusion in the country?
2. Can we say the leadership of the NPP will have constant dialogue with either the President, the Energy Minister or the Power Minister? Or they will go back to their homes and start planning for another useless and visionless demonstrations.
3. Can we say the leadership of the NPP are going to offer any alternative solutions? So far, one thing the NPP does not want to hear is Ghanaians asking them for alternative solutions to the energy crisis. They keep saying that Dr. Bamumia had already given the alternatives. Meanwhile, Dr. Bawumia is an Economist, so how could he give advice on energy. No wonder, they drained all his energy at the Supreme Court for nothing, and now Yaw Osafo Marfo is saying Dr. Bawumia as a Northerner is worthless in the NPP. On the energy issues, they don’t mention the only energy expert in their camp, Dr. Wereko Brobbey because they know Dr. Wereko Brobbey had described NPP means to solving a similar problem in 2007 as toys.
4. Can we say President John Dramani Mahama and his administration don’t know that there is energy crisis in Ghana? So why did the NPP give a very stupid reason that they are doing these demonstrations to let President Mahama know that there is energy crisis in Ghana. You see, when you are in opposition and you have nothing new to offer the voters, you repeat to them several times the same old things they already know. If you do that, the voter will know that you are just helpless for power and Ghana money. Your head is empty and dry with new ideas and solutions.
5. Can we say the NPP have leadership who are smart and respected by Ghanaians? They just talk “by heart” When they were dazed by the projects of the NDC in 2014, Nana Akomea called them “Jack, where are you projects” Mr. Agyarko, the 2012 campaign manager for NPP described them as “waste” and Nana Akufo-Addo also described them as “expensive” So you see, Nana Akomea did not see the projects at all but Mr Agyarko and Nana Addo see them. Agyarko does not see any good thing in them but Nana Addo sees everything good in them, just that they are expensive. Are you sure when the leadership of the NPP ordered their supporters to keep fit on the streets of Accra for free, they knew what they were doing? Are you sure the leadership of the NPP believe genuinely that they can achieve any better results by their noise making and disturbance of peace of the ordinary Ghanaian? By the way, who organized the dumsor dumsor demonsration on February 18, 2015? Was it the NPP or it was Ghanaians? Since 1957, whenever Ghanaians have some peace and freedom, these UP/PFP/NPP people would do everything possible to disturb that peace and freedom. I really don’t know what is wrong with them. They hate living in harmony.
6. When we did the meaningful demonstration at Sunyani Technical Institute, we got the exact results we wanted and every student rightly gave credit to the leadership and the organizers. Can we say the same thing about the leadership of the NPP? Can Ghanaians give any credit to the leadership of the NPP should President Mahama resolve the energy problems? What have they done or said meaningfully to deserve any credit? How could the NPP wished that dumsor dumsor continues into the 2016 to help them in the elections and yet demonstrate against it? It is like the UnionGOV era, where both the ruling government and the opposition were all asking Ghanaians to vote for it. If both the ruling government and the opposition are wishing for the dumsor to end, it means one of them is fake. The opposition wants to take advantage of the ordinary Ghanaian.
Fellow Ghanaians, the NPP has demonstrated against the dumsor dumsor in Ghana, now what? Is Nana Akufo-Addo the President of Ghana? Has electricity started flowing to household 24/7? Has the NPP presented any alternatives that the government has started implementing? When the NPP finished with their demonstration and went home, did they have lights and Ghanaians were sleeping in darkness? The NPP has lost the difference between demonstration and effective demonstration. This is why they keep losing elections in Ghana, and if they continue with this useless, visionless and primitive demonstrations, they will lose the 2016 elections easily. In the NPP today, Voltarians are inward-looking and Northerners are worthless. This Akan people’s party respects no one in Ghana.

Meanwhile, Friends of John Dramani Mahama (USA Chapter) is still accepting applications for membership. Registration is free for now. If you have not registered, please call the number below or send an email and someone will welcome you warmly. Membership is open to every Ghanaian.

Lawrence Appiah-Osei (Protocol)
Friends of John Dramani Mahama (USA Chapter)