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Opinions of Friday, 24 July 2009

Columnist: Damptey, Daniel Danquah

The True wrinkles Behind the Mask

. Last Sunday, the 12th of July, 2009, at about 8.15pm, I had a phone call from an unexpected source. Guess whom? The ‘honourable’ P. C. Appiah Ofori himself. Let me state here that I cannot say for sure whether it was Appiah Ofori himself who called, but the voice at the other end identified himself as the Honourable Appiah Ofori.

My encounter with ‘honourable’ P.C.Appiah Ofori on Telephone.

Voice at the other end: Am I speaking to Daniel … Hump… eeemm … Damptey? (I guessed he wanted to say Humpty but thought otherwise at the last minute)

Damptey: Sure, Damptey on the line

Voice at the other end: I am P. C. Appiah Ofori. Damptey: Oh ‘honourable’ how are you, sir? Voice at the other end: Cut out those crap and listen. Are you the one who put up that nonsense on the web? Damptey: Which of the sites, Sir?

Voice at the other end: Don’t give me that crap again and pretend you don’t know what I am referring to.

Damptey: What did I put out? I only narrated and analyzed what you alleged had taken place some few months ago.

Voice at the other end: And what were those things? I am asking whether you can defend the nonsense you published in court. Can you defend them in court? I am asking you because my lawyers will very soon get in touch with you.

Damptey: Please you can not shut me up with your threats. Jesus told the weeping women in Jerusalem not weep for Him (Jesus) but to weep for themselves and their children. I only repeated what you stated publicly.

Voice at the other end: I thought I was speaking to a responsible and reasonable individual, but I can see from your utterances that you are not. We shall meet in court. Damptey: So be it. Good night and God bleeess ……. That was my first personal encounter with the “honourable” MP for Asikuma-Odobeng-Brakwa Constituency. The voice might not be that of the big man himself since I have no way of determining whether it was the “great honourable” Appiah Ofori himself. It could have been that of any one purporting to be Appiah Ofori himself. But I take it as being that of the great honourable Appiah Ofori himself for I have no reason to think otherwise.

The absurdity of Appiah Ofori’s verbal exchanges with Mrs. Larbi Mensah on NET 2 TV.

The following Thursday, I was listening to and watching NET2 Tv during the early morning discussion programme hosted by Fiifi Boafo. Honourable Adu Asante, the MP for Adenta was the representative of the NDC on the programme. In the course of the programme, the host told listeners to hold on for a telephone conversation between the honourable P. C. Appiah Ofori and her accuser, one Mrs. Faustina Larbi Mensa. The lady promptly answered when Uncle Fiifi put out the call to her, but not our honourable MP for Asikuma - Odobeng -Brakwa. It took several minutes before the calls could get through to the honourable MP. The lady narrated the events which led to Appiah Ofori’s indebtedness to her and that P.C. had also issued dud cheques to her. According to her, P.C. Appiah Ofori, and his sister, accompanied by one man had come to her hose to solicit financial assistance to enable them repair their fishing vessel. In return, the woman was promised the full catch of the vessel as a means of offsetting the debt. The first catch was able to offset the one hundred million old Ghana cedis debt. Honorable P .C. Appiah Ofori kept asking for more money.

In response, P. C. Appiah Ofori stated that Mrs. Larbi Mensah promised to give them One billion old Cedis and that the company should not ask for assistance from any other source, but the lady could only provide seven hundred million old Ghana Cedis. As a result, repair works could not be completed on the boat. And since the boat has been grounded, where does the woman expect them to get money to repay the loan. Earlier the great honourable P. C. Appiah Ofori has denied ever receiving money from the said lady.

In the course of the verbal exchange, the “great honourable” MP for Asikuma-Odobeng-Brakwa had used some unprintable words on the lady, Mrs. Larbi Mensah. He called the lady a fool (kwasia). He used the word more than once. He also asked the lady to shut up, but he met his match in the lady who also ordered him to shut up. Mrs. Larbi Mensa asked rhetorically, how can you, the one owing me ask me to shut up? You too shut up! The lady said she has written to the Speaker, the Majority and the Minority Leaders about P. C. Appiah Ofori’s conduct and was awaiting response from the leadership of the House before deciding on the next line of action. Appiah Ofori retorted whether it is the Speaker or the House Leadership who will collect her money from him if indeed he owes her. He dared her to take him to court. And before one could say, Jack, our great and “honourable” MP had hung off the phone.

His action reminded me of a similar incident involving a colleague of mine. He was fond of spreading vicious, damaging and unsubstantiated allegations about his colleagues at the place of work. He had perpetrated these evil traits for donkey number of years. Then his cup ran over and he had to face the wrath of those he had maligned over the years. We catalogued all those allegations he had made and got the relevant facts to buttress them. The day of reckoning came and there was no hiding place for him. I raised the issues at the meeting. The guy got up and wanted to use his height and voice to intimidate me. He got up and rushed towards me shouting, “When and where did I say all these and who are your witness?” I got up and calmly mentioned and pointed at the okro mouth colleagues (who were present at the meeting) who had leaked the secrets. I also mentioned the names of people who were not workers but had been receivers of those allegations. They included including beer bar attendants. Alas, our colleagues of many years could say nothing. After the meeting, the MD decided to take the colleague out to rekindle his spirits. Alas, that was the last we saw of that colleague. His mouth undid him!

Deductions: Is P. C. Appiah Ofori, the self-acclaimed anti corruption crusader a Police Constable or Commissioner?

The deductions from the telephone conversation I had with P. C. Appiah Ofori and the encounter on NET 2 Tv are as follows: One, ‘honourable’ P. C. Appiah Ofori wants to live up to the tenets of his initials. P.C. which translated literally means Police Commissioner. He wants to bully or intimidate others into succumbing to his will, whims and caprices. During my telephone conversation with him, he ordered me to keep quiet and listen to him. In a similar vein, he asked the lady to shut up. And unless you stand up to such people they will over-run you. When such people meet their match, they pretend to be extremely angry and storm out of the room, or bang the telephone on you, and true to type, that was exactly what our honourable MP for Asikuma-Odobeng Brakwa did. Such people always fly the kite before administering the coup de grace.

Like I stated in the previous write-up, the arrogance of this Appiah Ofori stems from his utterances and daring the woman to go to court if she claims he, Appiah Ofori owes him. Why should she call the lady” kwasia”? And when the lady said she had written to the Speaker and the leadership of the House, does his retort not reveal the utter contempt he holds the leadership of the House. This is a man who makes allegations without substance but does not want anyone to contradict him. I am therefore shocked to hear that the man who first dared the lady to go to court has threatened to sue the lady for defamation of character. Has he not brought the name and reputation of NPP Parliamentarians into disrepute with his unsubstantiated allegations against them? His reaction to Mrs. Larbi Mensah’s allegations reveals that he is ungentle, very rude and somebody who wants to ride roughshod over others. He wants every attention to be on him so much so that when there is nothing that really matters he will stir up controversies.

Reactions to my previous write-up on P. C. Appiah Ofori.

My previous piece, titled, “Honourable” P. C. Appiah Ofori – A modern day Absalom or a mole in the NPP?’ was a sort of advice to those who always want to invent God during their life time. It is similar to Shirley’s poem titled, “Death, The Leveler”. Anyone who has read that poem will understand the point I was trying to make. When that piece was written, I expected some reactions, but obviously not the ones raised by my colleague, Alfred Manu Bernard who attempted to pollute the atmosphere by distorting facts and figures. He wrote: “There is a difference between one’s personal and public life. And so I believe it was immaterial for my friend to conclude that Appiah Ofori is unfit to be in the class of ‘honourables’ because he had INFECTED HIS WIFE WITH GONORRHEA” (caps mine) The thin dividing line between one’s private and public life. I would like to state for the avoidance of doubt that there is basically only a thin dividing line (visible to only a few discerning people) between the personal and public life of any patriotic citizen. The two are almost intertwined, and unless those latter day apostles of untruths would want us to be believers in the ‘do as I say, not do as I do’ philosophy, Mr Alfred Manu Bernard should as a matter of sound principle quickly retract the statement with genuine apologies for making such an outrageous deduction. At least he owes the greater number of those who access the various websites that.

Once a person decides to serve his country, he/she losses his identity and becomes a public figure or property. Why were the paparazzi going after Lady Diane and her lover Al-Fayyad in cars? Why did they not go after the ordinary man on the street? Why did Anane’s sexual escapades with the white lady become an issue of public concern? How many people have extra-marital affairs in the country and how many of such affairs get reported? You see people care less about the activities of the ordinary man or woman on our streets. But once you become a public figures and your status in society will change for all of a sudden, you will become the cynosure of all eyes.

Our constitution guarantees freedom of expression. Appiah Ofori could express himself on any subject he deems appropriate. But he should realize that facts are different from opinions. One should not state his opinions as if they were facts. I cannot call the ‘honourable M.P. for Asikuma – Odobeng – Brakwa a thief because I do not have the relevant facts to buttress that assertion. But I can analyze his character and come to the conclusion that the great honourable MP for Asikuma-Odobeng-Brakwa does not deserve to belong to the class of honourables for some stated reasons.

But all that Alfred Manu Bernard and his ‘think alikes’ have attempted doing is to present their opinions as facts. Allegations cannot be regarded as facts unless there is sufficient evidence to corroborate them. Do you know the extent misinformation and deliberate lies could lead to? And that is why in the Koran, cases of adultery have to be corroborated by at least three people of impeccable character. T he punishment for adultery in Islam is death by stoning. It is to protect the sanctity of marriage so that nobody will get up and make any frivolous accusation that the Holy Koran prescribes the evidence of three persons. And even here, the three people must physically see the action in progress. In other words, they must see the man on top of the woman, depending on the style used by the adulterers. This is to avoid a situation when an innocent victim could be sent to his/her untimely death. Due Process or Established Order against Jungle Justice. What those of us are advocating is that due process must be followed. But people like Alfred Manu Bernard have a different mindset altogether. Their own, like what Boxer says in ‘Animal Farm’ that “if Comrade Napoleon says it is so, it must be right” is what must prevail. And this is tantamount to what we call ‘jungle justice’. I made reference to the expression, ‘established order’. I meant the accepted way of doing things. One ingredient of our justice system is that accusations have got to be investigated in order to ascertain the truth. One cannot just condemn another on the basis of mere accusation without providing any shred of evidence. ‘Honourable P. C. Appiah Ofori cannot even remember the name of the NPP MP who confirmed that he was a beneficiary of the alleged bribery incident. And you, an intelligent individual would want me to believe such a man!

Mills panacea for solving corruption: A recipe for chaos?

And if we should believe P.C. Appiah Ofori, why should we not believe the Principal Accountant and the Chief Director at the Sports Ministry who made those damning allegations against the former Minister for Sports, Alhaji Muntaka? In their own case, at least some of the allegations made were found to be true by the kangaroo investigative body. And if we should go by the President Mills’ recipe for combating corruption, shouldn’t ‘honourable’ P. C. Appiah Ofori be on ‘interdiction’ from his parliamentary duties by now for making such reckless allegations without substance against his colleagues MPs? You see, my opposition to the NDC stems from the fact that the party always wants to demonize their political opponents without providing any evidence. For example, they have labeled J. B. Danquah as a CIA agent. But ask them to provide evidence and they will refer you to a so-called non-existing CIA files. But ask them to show you where you can access those files and you meet a dead end. But when an allegation is made by one of their members against their party, the whole party apparatus will descend on the individual. My mind goes back to a comment made by a contributor to one of my write-ups. He made reference to the okro-mouthed MP who alleged that President Mills, then candidate Mills was sick. Everybody saw what happened to him and so there is no need recounting. And if the latter day apostles of untruths are telling us that any allegations made by people including the likes of Chuck Kofi Wayo and P. C. Appiah Ofori should be believed, why should we not accept those made by the late Wadas Nas, Abacha’s Minister for Special Duties to the effect that the late Nigerian dictator has given some thousands of dollars to the then President Rawlings to help shore up the waning popularity of the late dictator? Why should we disbelieve the report that the Governor of Rivers State IN Nigeria had given so much money to ex-President Rawlings to execute the Electoral battles of the NDC during the December, 2008 elections? Let us ask Victor Smith all that he knows about the allegations. Alfred Manu Bernard twisted fact when he stated that I had written that Mr Appiah Ofori had infected his wife with gonorrhea. No, I did not write any such thing. What I stated in unmistaken terms was that Appiah Ofori had accused his wife of infecting with the disease and not the other way round. Do we have to take such a man serious anytime he comes up with such accusations? All that I want a person like Alfred Manu Bernard and others to realize is that in our attempts to score cheap popularity by maligning our political opponents, we should not sidetrack the moral issues which follow when we twist facts and figures.

Why ‘honourable’ P. C. Appiah Ofori should face the New Patriotic Party’s Disciplinary Committee.

Hear Alfred Manu Bernard at it again: “The news that P. C. Appiah Ofori is to face the disciplinary Committee of the NPP, for WHATEVER REASON, (Caps mine) is quite disturbing. The world is waiting, and the outcome will be seen as a litmus test of the party’s so-called belief in the rule of law”. If a person goes against the constitution of a group which every member including the culprit has sworn to uphold, doesn’t it behoove on the group to mete out appropriate sanctions on the erring member? Is this not the established law of nature? If it is not so, why should we punish offenders? Why should you drink the soup before we finish its preparation? Mr Appiah Ofori has to face the party’s Disciplinary Committee for the reckless and unguarded statements he made against his colleagues MPs without substance. Nobody can predict the outcome of the investigation. If the Committee finds him not guilty of the charges, why, he will be set free. But if he is found culpable, appropriate sanctions will be meted out on him.

If people like Alfred Manu Bernard and others claim not to know the reason while P.C.Appiah Ofori has to be hauled before the party’s Disciplinary Committee, then they are being mischievous and there is no need to reason with them. For they have eyes, but do not see, they have ears but do not hear. And so, we have to leave them to wallow in their own ignorance. This is not the first time such a thing has happened in Ghana’s political history. We are all living witnesses to what happened to Sly Akakpovi. They humiliated and hounded him to his grave. But we in the New Patriotic Party will not travel that path. We will give our man the opportunity to defend and purge himself of the alleged contempt. Those who do not know the real P.C.Appiah Ofori should get transcripts of his encounter with Mrs. Faustina Larbi Mensah on NET 2 Tv AND Oman Fm on Thursday, 16th July, 2009. I will appeal to both stations to constantly play that encounter on regular basis and if possible use it as a ringing tune (providing it does not breach the laws of our land). The mask will fall off the face of the great and honourable P. C. Appiah Ofori and you will see the real wrinkles for it is not all that glitters that is gold and those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. The Posers.

Those who are defending the indefensible should answer these questions: Is it true that P.C.Appiah Ofori, together with his sister went to the house of Mrs. Faustina Larbi Mensah? What was the purpose of the visit? Was it to arrange for a loan or it was a friendly visit? If it was a loan, how much was it and how much has been repaid? What is Appiah Ofori’s indebtedness to the lady? Is it also true that the Great Honourable Member of Parliament for Asikuma-Odobeng-Brakwa himself issued a dud cheque to Mrs. Faustina Larbi Mensah? Is it also an offence to issue a dud cheque in this country?

Alfred Manu Bernard is a confused and self-centred individual. Mr Alfred Manu Bernard states “In the mental lexicon of Mr Damptey anyone who stands for the truth and would not kowtow to corrupt practices is on the path of self edification. What irony!” Alfred Manu Bernard did not read through the entire piece. And even if he finished reading the entire script he did not understand the import of what I wrote. If he had he wouldn’t have come up with such a presumptuous deduction. I don’t want to blow my own horn, but Alfred Manu Bernard should find time to go through my numerous scripts and he will begin to revise his notes about the person called Daniel Danquah Damptey. What has Alfred Manu Bernard done about the glaring injustice to opponents of the NDC who have been sacked from their jobs? What did he do about the harassment and killings of NPP sympathizers at Agbogbloshie in the aftermath of the December 2008 elections? Nothing! Yet Alfred Manu Bernard and the rest of those who would want to invent God during their lifetime want to portray themselves to Ghanaians and the outside world that they detest injustice. What have they done about the sacking of workers in the NHIS, the NYEP and other agencies by the Volta Regional Minister who has publicly stated that more of such NPP supporters and sympathizers would be sacked? I have tried in my own little way to rectify some of the deficiencies in our body politics through my writings. Whatever I do, I do so as an individual without malice, but with the firm belief that we are all creatures of one Universal God and that we shall one day give account of our stewardship before Him. This notion propels me in my daily encounter with my fellow human beings. I have attempted to condemn every condemnable act that comes to my notice. Unlike Alfred Manu Bernard, I do not turn the other way while acts of irregularities and wrong-doings are perpetrated against innocent victims. I will never defend the indefensible. But what I will never do is to swallow line, hook and sinker allegations without proof by someone whose character and credibility are questionable. I will not fall for the bait of someone who adopts a populist stand to hoodwink others into believing that he is incorruptible. What we need are facts. And that is why God, my creator has given me eyes to see things, nose to smell and fish out facts, and the third eye and a sixth sense to discern and lead me to the ultimate destination. I am someone who analyzes issues critically before coming to a conclusion. I want to be convinced beyond every reasonable doubt before I accept things as facts. I can say without any fear of contradiction that the only reason why Alfred Manu Bernard wrote in defence of P.C.Appiah Ofori was that he too wanted his voice to be heard. He distorted the fact I provided. By so doing, he attempted to misinform, confuse and confound the many readers who access the site. The differences that exist between the two great parties in the country is that the New Patriotic Party believes in Due Process whereas members of the National Democratic Congress submerge themselves in lies, distortions, misinformation, guile, deceits, and sometimes questionable tricks and criminal devices just to score cheap political points.

The responsibility of all New Patriotic Members. The careless talk of ‘honourable P.C.Appiah Ofori has tampered with cosmic order. In other words, evil has been set loose and it will continue to exert its influence until this ‘troubler of Israel’ is swept away by the evil he has unleashed on humanity. It is therefore the responsibility of every New Patriotic Member to start mobilizing forces to counter the injustice that has been done to our parliamentarians by these forces or agents of destabilsation.

Daniel Danquah Damptey (0243715297)

E- mail: danieldanquah_damptey@yahoo.com