You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2016 06 18Article 448576

Opinions of Saturday, 18 June 2016

Columnist: Mazing, Carl

The President Mahama I know

Maxwell Okamafo Addo, Member of the Presidential Press Corps “Civis Ghananus Sum” - I am a citizen of Ghana- MY TAKE ON “FORD EXPEDITION GIFT STORY’

Even as President John Mahama continues to fight for peace, unity and stability, his opponents are fighting for power – and they are ready to use any means possible to achieve that diabolical goal – which is what separates him from their likes.

And, while President John Dramani Mahama is ruling Ghana with the constitution as his Holy Bible and Quran, others want to rule Ghana as their private business.

The so-called expose by Joy FM of a car gift to President John Mahama has been trending since the beginning of this week when the Multimedia Group – owners of Joy FM, myjoyonline and six others – widely advertised and hyped the infantile investigative documentary.

JOY FM and its sister platforms succeeded in getting the needed attention and, most especially, tried vainly to conclude President Mahama took a bribe and, therefore, is corrupt.

Manasseh Azure Awuni, the author of the “FORD EXPEDITION GIFT STORY’ carefully crafted questions to illicit responses that will influence conclusions to be drawn. Manasseh’s report sought to indicate that Mr. Djibril Kananzoe, a Burkinabe contractor used undue influence to get contracts. The promo before tried to raise an alarm that KANAZOE FRERES Company is about to be awarded another project, valued at 82 million cedis after two earlier ones.

What exposes the agenda, which is a sharp departure from fairness is President John Mahama’s voice in the promo which commends KANAZOE FRERES Company for an excellent job on the 46-kilometre Dodo Pepeso-Nkwanta road.

Manasseh’s post on his facebook wall then asks, is it Bribe, Conflict of Interest or both? For a journalist of his stature to deliberately leave out the gift component in his question, raises eyebrows.

For JOY FM to air the report twice on a single programme further suggests their agenda and interest. Fortunately, many have seen the intended political mischief.

Correspondence and documents Manasseh clandestinely acquired suggest duties were duly paid.
He also could not establish if the President in deed received the car and was in his possession. More so, majority of calls into the Super Morning Show were critical of the entire report, contrary to JOY FM’s expectations.

Was the report a setup, or part of a grand agenda to expose the Mahama Administration as corrupt, for political gains? Take a critical look at the letter, purportedly a correspondence between Maxwell Nyarko Lartey, Head of Chancery at Ghana’s Embassy in Burkina Faso. By standard practice there should be stamps acknowledging receipt. It also looks like it was not filed. Could it be a leaked document from an aggrieved former staff?

Ghana’s former Ambassador to Burkina Faso (Chief Bawumia, brother of NPP's vice presidential candidate Dr Bawumia) presented a vehicle to the office of the President on behalf of the contractor in question in September, 2012.

The award of the 46.4km European Union funded Dodo-Pepesu road contract followed an international competitive bidding process which was in compliance with laid down requirements of the European Union. There was absolutely no involvement of the President in the processes leading to the award of this contract.

It is interesting to note that this journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni has been consistent in attacking the personality of the President and his government. He has continuously incited his followers to castigate John Mahama through his posts.

On June 7, he put up a post with the pictures of President Mahama and Nana Akufo Addo which read, “Take Advantage of the Conditions in which we find ourselves in – the corruption, the joblessness, the mismanagement of the economy and the rest you can think of. That’s how to win election….”

On April 9th, this year, another cynical piece read, “This week, I met one of the staunchest critics of President Mahama’s administration. He is a respected figure, the issue of criticism of the President came up and he told me he couldn’t just tolerate the abysmal leadership”
That comment received 73 shares.

On March 11 when the debate on the Independence Day brochure was raging, his post read, “I wonder which Bugabuga government communicator will show up for Newsfile tomorrow”, a clear insult to government appointees.

And remember he referred to government appointees at the Flagstaff House as “ugly monkeys”. Is that journalism?

He has issued statements to ridicule the President on the distribution of free sandals and has attacked the President over his decision to seek an IMF bailout; and the rest are on his wall for anyone to verify.

On December 31, 2015, Manasseh Azure Awuni admitted in his last post of the year that he does these deliberately. He was blunt, “Journalists also have opinions. A journalist who just passes on what somebody says without fighting for a course is a robot….that is why I find social media a way to help shape opinion”

Question; are those dirty posts and attacks on the personality of President Mahama his way of shaping opinions? Should anyone take him serious since he could be seeing a bottle as half empty?

This is the profile of a reporter who wants to be called “super investigative journalist”.

First of all, I want to advice Manasseh Awuni Azure that the Ghanaian society knows its onions, screen and chose the most eloquent, intelligent, morally-upright person with good family values and hardworking member of the society to lead them to prosperity.

From what I know, bribery is prepaid before the beneficiary action is taken. The value of the bribe is specified by the receiver.

A gift, on the other hand, is post paid, is never asked for and never specified. Most often, it is unexpected by the receiver. In most cases it comes with prayers and gratitude from the giver.

Ironically, the leadership of the NPP and its communicators who feel their party would benefit from the ill-informed attempt to malign the president, are the same people who have accused their General Secretary of receiving a Toyota Landcruiser V-8 vehicle from President Mahama.

Then the same leader is accused of taking a second hand FORD EXPEDITION vehicle as a bribe for opposition members to chew him.

And they don’t seem to appreciate the illogical conclusions they are drawing.
Interestingly, the so-called expose hit Ghana at the very time President Mahama had presented 500 vehicles to educational institutions across the country.

For those of us who have worked with President Mahama, we know his role as a leader who is molding and mobilizing the society on a positive path, no matter the challenges, It’s clear to all reasonable people to appreciate.

It is unimaginable that the only thing that happens in Ghana is the continuous lies and fabrications about President Mahama as if he’s taking bribe like buying pure water.

Goodwill and accountability will go a long way in aiding progress and development just like the Christian Holy Book admonishes that “Truth exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people”.

IF one were to draw up a list of distinguished Ghanaians who have exhibited high level of competence and integrity in their service to country and humanity in general, then President John Dramani Mahama will be among the top on that list with his work being amplified in decibels.

President Mahama is the sober voice of reason at a time of unreason. He is the fellow keeping his head while some are panicking. He is the healing presence for Ghanaians.

And a reminder to Manasseh and his ilk: Ghanaians would not vote for a president who doesn’t understand nor appreciate the general drifts in the country but caged in ideological gridlock and scavenging for primitive accumulations.

I see Manasseh’s story on the president as the greatest movie of all time, which i believe the script writer, director and producer should be awarded with Grammy Award for the best fiction story ever.

My thinking is that it is either those chasing the President are sick or the humiliation of several defeats has affected their faculty of reasoning.

I also want to advise Manasseh and other opposition parties who have been “painting the administration of President Mahama bad” before the global community in order to allow their selfish political ambition to destroy the country: most of the time you cannot detach the Office of the President and honour the Republic of Ghana.

Manasseh is behaving as if we are welcomed to a Republic of Everything Goes; where lunatic, hopeless and clueless characters want to become leaders, while people of integrity with strong leadership and intellectual sagacity are looked down upon and hopelessly chased away.
For the records, President Mahama had even developed “thick skin against such criticisms”. However, I want to advise politicians to thread with caution as their actions could destabilize democratic structures already in place..

And, per what he’s doing, Ghana and Ghanaians that pride themselves as the giant of Africa and the most educated Ghanaians would not chose an intellectually, morally and spiritually bankrupt dwarf as their leader; thereby making them a laughing stock around the world.

As a Ghanaian, I know that there is a difference between ambition and reality. So, Manasseh should advice his paymasters. People can go for their ambition; nobody is disturbing them because it is a free world. They must go and compete, but they shouldn’t pull down this country called Ghana because of their personal ambition. It is unacceptable.

The reality is that there is nothing Presidential about those he’s helping to chase President Mahama; from their presentations – walking, standing and morals. Leadership is a serious business given to serious and critical members of the society.

Indeed, when a man is inflicted with self inbuilt inferiority complex, cluelessness, vindictiveness, irredentism, incompetence and wickedness he sees everything and everybody against him, especially critical and serious minds.
In their primitive imagination, they thought Ghana is like the little village (hmmm) he came from.
At the initial stage, he neither understands the complexity of the problems and what it takes to lead Ghana; nor does he appreciate the prestige and responsibilities attached to the office of the President of the Republic of Ghana.
For a man who lacks temperament, charisma and sagacity in leadership position, how do we expect him to lead a diverse society like Ghana? For the critical and serious-minded Ghanaians, they were not expecting any miracle from the past electoral contests.
I believe there is a difference between debates and insults. I reject insults and the fact that the president is a public officer doesn’t give anybody the liberty to insult him.
Let me end this with a quote from Kung Fu Tzu (Confucius):
“If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in the character
If there is beauty in the character there will be harmony in the home
If there is harmony in the home there will be order in the nation
If there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.”
To change Ghana, it takes collective effort not reliance on one person.