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Opinions of Monday, 12 November 2012

Columnist: Adofo, Rockson

What is that Nonsensical "Order from Above"

What is that Nonsensical "Order from Above" doing in Ghana?

Something has been doing my head in for several years now. It is nothing other than the abusive way those elected to serve us, but rather conveniently choose to lord it over us behave. They most often feel they are a?law unto themselves. They have authority to do, as they want when they want. I really have aversion to their irresponsible behaviour of intervening to prevent justice from being done to some people or taking its course. They issue orders that oblige our law enforcement agents to circumvent the normal procedure in place to investigating and or punishing or exonerating accused persons. They popularly refer to those unnecessary interventions by those in higher places as "Order from above", which compels them to do things contrary to expectation.

During and after the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) government, then Chairman J. J. Rawlings was fond of issuing such orders. I remember vividly well how he employed "power from above" tactics to strip my own Kumawu compatriot, Mr. B.A. Mensah, of his pride. Many are those that alleged Mr P. V. Obeng instigated Rawlings to confiscate B.A. Mensah's International Tobacco Ghana Limited company for no apparent reason. They accused B.A. Mensah of tax evasion. From what I knew, he never evaded any tax but simply rejected the overtures by certain criminals within government that had desired to become shareholders in his company. Was P.V. Obeng one of those criminals? We shall never know. Why would they force themselves on him as shareholders of his company? He was not broke and needed no-one's money to run his company.

General Ignatius Kutu Acheampong of the Supreme Military Council 1 granted Mr Benjamin Amponsah Mensah a few years of tax rebate. This rebate was to help the then infant cigarette factory prop her feet in the competitive market. Rawlings and his band of communist-inclined hungry but selfishly greedy vultures on a mission to reduce rich men to the level of the poor seized the company. Mr Mensah offered to pay any supposed tax evasion that though was tax rebate, with additional penalty charges. The Tax Revenue Department refused the payment. He presented them a cheque twice as much the supposed debt in tax evasion but they still refused it. He offered to pay the debt threefold. They rejected it hinting him about "an order from above" That supposed order from above had instructed them not to receive any money from him in payment of the debt. Their entire plan was to take away the company from him because he had refused to identify with their roguish PNDC administration.

Under the current National Democratic Congress (NDC), we still do hear of instances where the security agents have cited "order from above" to do things contrary to expectation. Whomever that resides above issuing such non-conforming orders that are only tailored to suit he, the issuer's ego should stop. They are doing Mother Ghana and Ghanaians more harm than good. To me, the come-to-stay policy of "order from above" is pure nonsense, lawless and a weapon to oppress the governed.

Rockson Adofo