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Opinions of Monday, 21 January 2013

Columnist: Allotey, Henry Kpakpo

The dynamics of the President's appointments.

Since President Mahama started making his Ministerial appointments, there has been some amount of agitations from the party hardliners who think they are being sidelined. The protests that arose from the appointment of his immediate staff including the Chief of Staff, Secretary to the president and to the cabinet is one case in point. What Ghanaians are not aware of is the mindset of the president in making these appointments.

The President is a moderate when it comes to his political inclination. Every party is made of three groups: Hardliners, moderates and liberals. Let me illustrate. Where will you place personalities like Samuel Okudjeto Ablakwa, Fiifi Kwetey, Tony Aidoo, Nii Lantey Vanderpuije, Koku Anyidoho and Felix Kwakye Ofosu? Yes you guess right! Hardliners!

What about these people; Ms. Dzifa Ativor, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, Nii Amarh Ashittey, Dr. Omane Boamah, Sherry Ayittey, Seth Terkper, Inusah Fuseini, John Akologo Tia etc? Yes, these are the moderates! The liberals are the people who don't care so much about what happens in the party. They are not so bothered whether the party is in government or opposition, they will always vote for it and keep quiet. People like P.V Obeng, Mike Gizo etc come to mind.

We need to keep in mind that every political party has these groups of people in it. The prominence of each group comes to the open depending on the leanings of the president. President Mills was seen as a moderate and did his best to appoint people with similar leanings to his government. This led to serious internal schism spearheaded by the hardliners led by J.J Rawlings. We all saw the various demonstrations mostly against former President Mills's appointments. The hardliners thought people who they classified as outsiders where now enjoying when they suffered for the party. The result was a compromise but this did not go far enough till his unfortunate and sad demise.

We can see the same thing trying to rear its ugly head again. This time, people who were very vocal during President Mills's days are now being tagged hardliners with the president being urged to ignore them. We can see from his various appointments that our President is determine to satisfy the various factions in the party including former president Rawlings. People who openly had confrontation with former President Rawlings are being sidelined and people whose utterances were deemed moderate are being elevated and appointed. The President has also appointment people with deep liberal minds into positions of responsible. His immediate staff including the Chief of Staff, Secretary to the Cabinet, Spokesperson etc are all liberals whose contribution to the party cannot be seen or measured.

We need to respect the President choices. He is the man who will account to the people of Ghana after his stewardship. He will appoint people he believes he can work with. Nobody can force the president to appoint people he will not be comfortable working with. This is his choice and we must respect it. The President is a moderate and he will surround himself with moderate and liberals. Sorry to the hardliners, your days are past!

Henry Kpakpo Allotey (kpakpogh@yahoo.com) 0243370764