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Opinions of Monday, 10 December 2007

Columnist: Ablakwa, Samuel Okudzeto

Will these last minute gimmicks save the NPP?

I have noticed with amusement, some intriguing last minute gimmicks of the NPP government. As to whether the one year left can be used by the NPP to change the seven year impression of the people through these latest gimmicks, it will be interesting to see.

What then are these gimmicks?

1) The President summons the AMA boss, Nii Adjiri Blankson and asks him to go and ask Tema Station hawkers who were sacked in October to return to post for the lame excuse of Christmas approaching.

2) The President withdraws an Executive Instrument which sort to hurriedly create about thirty new districts and municipalities under another lame excuse of wanting to consult the Electoral Commission before implementing these reforms.

3) A demolishing exercise being carried out at Weija to protect the water body is mysteriously halted after only 20 houses had been demolished out of the 2,000 earlier earmarked.

What is important to note is that all the above exercises had faced stiff resistance from the people affected. Also the usual lack of broad base consultation and the lack of a human face in the execution of these tasks which has characterized actions by the NPP government were again evident.

I must state that in the case of the Weija demolishing, in as much as I think the demolishing is necessary, the question I ask is that, where were the authorities when all these developments around the weija damn were taking place? Who were the operatives in those government agencies who issued the permits to these unfortunate developers? In the face of these, should the unfortunate developers be made to suffer these huge losses without any compensation and adequate information allowing them time to at least move their valuables to safety.

On the issue of the creation of new districts and municipalities, didn’t the government know beforehand that the practice and tradition is to involve the Electoral Commission? To some of us, the government has deliberately deepened its divide and rule tactics especially in the case of Adenta and Ashaiman where it is obvious that it only sort to say thank you to Adenta for voting for an NPP MP and to punish Ashaiman for voting for an NDC MP. By this singular reckless act of the government, a wedge has been drawn between the once cordial neighbours of Adenta and Ashaiman and this withdrawal will do little to repair relations.

In the matter of the Tema Station hawkers, it is the most laughable episode I have observed in recent times. I didn’t know that in Ghana these days, when Christmas is approaching people can be granted presidential permit to break the rules. At least, when the AMA was sacking them in October, we were told that the hawkers had violated the AMA bye-laws. I am very certain that since after Christmas we enter an election year, nothing will be done to those hawkers who have been given presidential permit to “go and sin” as it were.

It is important to point out to the government, that these last minute gimmicks aimed at achieving the following three objectives have failed:

1) that it is a listening government,

2) the attempt to sway the masses against participating in the CJA’s “Ye Wuo” demonstration and

3) the cheap attempt to secure votes in the 2008 elections

On the contrary, these actions, by the NPP government have shown that:

1) it lacks principle,

2) it is opportunistic,

3) it is running our country without vision

4) it is vindictive and divisive

5) it will sacrifice everything including the laws of the land to just convince itself of longevity in government

6) the NPP will do nothing different in its last year to correct the seven year record of corruption, mismanagement, insensitivity, cocaine, killer fuel hikes, cruel upward tariff adjustments, taxes on phone airtime and subsequent squander of the vampire taxes it collects from the people on their private comfort and wealth amassment.

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa (Former President, NUGS)
Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.: