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Opinions of Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Columnist: Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Koku Anyidoho is where he is today because he prepared himself for it

Folks, you can tell that I haven't commented on happenings regarding all that the NDC's Deputy General Secretary (Koku Anyidoho) has brought (down) on his own head.

I haven't commented on it because I have all along made it clear that the kind of political rhetoric engaged in by the Koku Anyidoho's and co. isn't what will help the NDC claw back lost political grounds. Plainly put, it won't put the NDC in power because it alienates more than attracts voters.

If anything at all, it hurts the party's interests all the more because the voters who rejected it at the polls that it lost knew why, regardless of how much the NDC administration under Rawlings, Mills, and Mahama did by way of infrastructural development, empowerment, and what-not. We saw that rejection at Elections 2000, 2004, and 2016 and wonder why the Koku Anyidoho’s can't see things properly to tone down on their belligerence and misplaced foolery.

In a democracy, the ballot box is the final determinant. Though other means exist for poking the rib of the government in power, nothing allows the kind of overdrive that Koku Anyidoho shot himself into. I am being plain and objective here, folks. The NDC needs as better approach to waking up Ghanaians to0 the frailties and foibles of our democracy under Akufo-Addo.

A serious political camp confronted with the reality of its loss would look for reasons to help it claw back lost grounds instead of what Koku Anyidoho and others thinking and behaving like him are putting out there to irritate the people all the more---and to deepen the NDC's woes.

I am not the kind to support such recklessness. Our democracy provides measures to clip the wings of the government in power. Only the ballot box, no matter how abysmal the government's performance may be along the line,
Taking advantage of the constitutional provision of free speech to say anything anyhow isn't and shouldn't be the most favourite step toward undermining or getting rid of the government put in power by the electorate.
Yes, enmity and bitterness may prevail against the Akufo-Addo government for whatever reason, but going the way Koku did is clearly an overstretching of the issue.

Regarding the immediate provocation for Koku's waywardness, couldn't it be possible for an astute politician to read between the lines to bide his time? Of course, the vitriolic reaction from Ghanaians of all shades to the obnoxious agreement with the United States already makes it clear that the Akufo-Addo government will suffer from the negative backlash. Shouldn't a reasonable politician just allow the dust to settle instead of inserting himself into the wind and reaping the whirligig?

Koku miscalculated big time and will have a lot to answer for. Nothing prevents any Ghanaian from damning what is considered as detrimental to the national interest, but going the way Koku did spells doom for him, especially within the context of the Constitution and whatever legal arrangements that prop up our 4th Republic.

It is not as if Koku made any good name for himself when serving in the Mills administration. He stepped on toes and set himself up for retributive justice thereafter. I can't imagine why he would tell an interviewer recently to ask former President Mahama why he didn't make him a member of his government. Such nauseating arrogance and ill-manner!!

In my opinion pieces reacting to anything "obscurantist" and wayward coming from them, I have made it clear that the NDC cannot claw back lost grounds with their kind of nonsense.

That nonsense didn't win the hearts, minds and thumbs of Ghanaian voters who put the NDC in power in 1992, 1996, and 2012 and it won't do so at future polls. The NDC won those elections because it could stand on its own record to wow and woo the voters. It doesn't need Koku and Co. to hurt it. So much to prove how I hate Koku's needless ruffling of feathers.

Of course, now that he has given Akufo-Addo the ammunition to shoot him down and out, the best to be hoped for is that the laws of the land will be allowed to run their full course in determining his fate. Interestingly, Koku has given the NPP administration the ammunition to shoot him down and out. Treason isn't a child's play thing. No more on it.

The NDC has quickly reacted to the issue and dissociated itself from Koku’s utterances, even as it insists on supporting him to the hilt to defend his stance. I see a lot to worry over here. Clearly, the double-edged sword is dangling. Will the NDC deny Koku in this so-called “treasonous” situation yet go ahead to participate in demonstrations engineered by Koku to hit hard at the NPP government with the view to making it unpopular and, invariably, prepared for rejection at the polls?

I have read Asiedu Nketiah’s statement that the arrest of Koku provides a “positive” motivation for the demonstrations lined up to undermine the NPP administration. What is what now?

The NDC may want to do all that it has up its sleeves, but there seems to be a feeling in me that it will backfire, especially if the Akufo-Addo government unleashes the full force of brutal state security on the demonstrators. (Asiedu Nketiah himself is a victim of such brutalities many years ago when he was floored at the Osu Christiansburg Crossroads in such a demonstration. Memory here for him to recall).

What baffles me in this instance of Koku, though, is the zeal with which the Akufo-Addo government is using the police in this case to create the impression that law and order are working in Ghana. I will be the first to point accusing fingers at Akufo-Addo as an intolerant and wicked politician who is quick to paint others black and himself as white when it comes to political agitations in Ghana.

What didn't Akufo-Addo do in those days to threaten national security? Is it the operations of the "Alliance for Change" or what-not? When he masterminded the street demonstrations under various guises (the "Kume Preko", "Wie me Preko" and "Sie me preko" versions under Rawlings, no one touched him, even though justifiable reasons existed for him to be eliminated as a nuisance.)

Again, in the heat of the NPP's search for public support to outdo the NDC, he made many damaging comments (the "All-die-be-die" nonsense and many more) just as those taking the leaf from him (the obnoxious Kennedy Agyapong, for instance) did. In head-butting Mahama, they said a lot that could have landed them where they want to put Koku Anyidoho; but Rawlings, Mills, and Mahama turned a blind eye to it all.

My main point at the end of this opinion piece is that the speed with which the government has run to use the police to arrest, detain, and process Koku Anyidoho for trial on the charge of treason speaks volumes of the intolerance and irritating manner in which Team Akufo-Addo is doing government business.

If previous governments could tolerate the treasonable and provocative nonsense spearheaded by Akufo-Addo in the effort to make Ghana ungovernable, what is it that it cannot take to allow free speech to guide our democratic experiment? The kind of free speech that will show it the barometer reading?
For now, it may be easy to prosecute Koku Anyidoho, but the consequences could be dire for our democracy, especially given the fact that his outbursts were prompted by the Akufo-Addo government's unreasonable mortgaging of Ghana's democracy to the United States in respect of the establishment of the US's military base in Ghana and all that it entails.

Had the NPP Majority in Parliament and Team Akufo-Addo been circumspect, matters wouldn't have reached this stage. Too bad for Ghana!!

But let it be known that the fate of the Akufo-Addo government should be determined at the polls (slated for December 2020). Anybody thinking of a coup d’etat (whether by civilians in a revolt or whatever else) will be singing his own dirge. Under Kufuor, Rawlings came up with the instigation of “Positive Defiance” that fetched nothing good for the NDC at Election 2004. What will Koku’s version fetch the party? Only scorn!!

From what I have gathered so far, it is better to leave Team Akufo-Addo to continue giving “rally ground talk” and making promises, more promises, and more promises, while the living conditions of the people stagnate or worsen. At the 202m polls, the voice of the people will be heard. No need to give any impression that a coup d’etat is the best option to kick it out of office.

Our democracy must be respected so we can learn useful lessons from happenings to prove that “the black man is capable of managing his own affairs”(as the great Osagyefo put it long ago) for the good of all. I am done for now!!

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