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Opinions of Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Columnist: Katakyie Kwame Opoku Agyemang

Why is Akufo-Addo silent on Kufuor's murder allegations?

It's pathetic to note that former President Kufuor has not enjoyed the kind of peace he expected after his political exit. Even in his own party, the noble man cannot exercise his franchise to select a leader. A section of NPP members who owe allegiance to Akufo-Addo continue to make life unbearable for the man who served both his party and country with enthusiasm, diligence, and integrity. Kufuor's crime? He is the "cause" of all Akufo-Addo's electoral defeats.

Is that Kufuor's reward? Kufuor's detractors cannot fathom why as a sitting President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, he couldn't use his powers to change the sovereign will of the people. They have forgotten that, if it were so simple, Jerry Rawlings could have done a similar thing for Candidate Mills in 2000.

Again, some argue that in 2008, Kufuor did not campaign for Akufo-Addo like Rawlings did for Mills, because Kufuor's preferred Candidate lost the presidential primaries. Here too, these detractors were not aware that Akufo-Addo's Campaign Team strategically asked Kufuor to play a back role for the electorates to connect well with Akufo-Addo as a candidate.

Most of these people were also not aware that Kufuor donated $60m to Akufo-Addo, and GHC30,000 to each NPP Parliamentary Candidate for their campaign activities. In fact, they were not also aware that, whilst most of the aspirants in the party's stronghold kept their campaign money because they envisaged a victory at all cost, those in the orphan constituencies also kept theirs because they envisaged defeat. This, coupled with the problem of selecting parliamentary candidates cost the NPP majority of seats in parliament.

There is no denying the fact that some NPP members boast of political achievements as former ministers and chief directors. But, who gave them the opportunity, if I may ask? As we all know, Akufo-Addo's political achievement would have been hollow, had it not been Kufuor's benevolence. He was given two big portfolios - Attorney-General and Foreign Affairs to manage. It thus beggars belief how Kufuor would repose confidence in a man people claim he dislikes.

To show his commitment to party unity, Kufuor prevailed upon Alan Kyerematen to step down when the 2007 NPP Presidential Primaries reached a stalemate.

Besides, Kufuor used his limited presidential time to campaign for Akufo-Addo in 2008, especially in the 2nd round of voting. And when no clear winner still emerged, Kufuor was the first person to arrive at Wenchi ahead of Tain elections, only for the presidential candidate, Nana Akufo-Addo to tell him that he had tasked his lawyers - Atta Akyea and Co. to go to court to stop the EC from conducting the elections.

Who then do you blame for your defeat, Kufour or yourself? In Election 2012, Kufuor again joined Akufo-Addo on his campaign platforms, his age and health notwithstanding and urged Ghanaians to vote for his successor. He supported Akufo-Addo's election petition to the latter in 2013.

Surprisingly, Kufuor received the highest humiliation ever on January 7, 2013, when a group of radicals led by Hopeson Yaovi Adorye, the guy who was nearly jailed by Justice Atuguba for his foul mouth, besieged his residence with machetes, sticks, and stones to "kill" him. His crime? To attend President Mahama's inauguration as a former president. But, was Kufuor also not sworn in by a former president in 2001?

In the last two general elections, Kufuor's impressive economic record has been the pivot around which Akufo-Addo's campaign revolves. Akufo-Addo has consistently promised to build on Kufuor's achievements - NHIS, free maternal care, free education, among others, if given the mandate to rule. A couple of months ago, Kufuor too described Akufo-Addo as a man of many parts who could turn the economy of Ghana around.

But, notwithstanding Kufuor's moral and huge financial assistance to Akufo-Addo, the most successful leader in the Danquah-Busia-Dombo Tradition is being treated like an outsider. Some fanatics of Akufo-Addo see Kufuor as a "selfish", "wicked", and "vindictive" person. This did not end there as just last week, Ken Ohene Agyapong alleged that, Kufuor and Kwadwo Mpiani are murderers.

Regrettably and as usual, neither Akufo-Addo nor any member of the NPP has condemned the foul-mouthed Member of Parliament. The hatred for Kufuor has even transcended to all those who associate with his legacy - Alan, Wireko Brobbey, Nyaho-Tamakloe, Arthur K, Ohene Ntow, Katakyie, Hilda Addo, Michael Ampong, Hon. Anane, and now Afoko and Kwabena Agyepong.

These detractors have created phantom factions within the NPP and polluting the minds of their followers with "Agenda 2020". But, the question is; how could one create a faction between a man who has successfully won two presidential elections against one who has taken his party from government into opposition for 4 years, and kept it there for the second time?

For me, Kufuor is peerless in both NPP and Ghana and any NPP candidate who intends to win presidential elections must not only be submissive to him, but also study his political strategy of working with perceived enemies in a party. Until Akufo-Addo condemns and distances himself from Ken Agyapong, it would be morally wrong and politically suicidal for him to campaign on Kufuor's legacy. "Mpanin se, y3kyiri kooko a, y3nni no mmae3"!

God bless Ghana!

God bless the NPP!!

God bless Kufuor!!!

Katakyie Kwame Opoku Agyemang