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Politics of Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Source: Al hajj

Attempts to Gag NDC Communicator

“Don’t Push Me” -Prez Mahama’s in-law, Stephen Atubiga Yells

Former Jailbird and National Democratic Congress Communications team member, Stephen Atubiga, has admonished officials of the ruling party hatching plans to gag him by preventing him from representing the party on radio and television platforms to get off his back or bear the consequences of their plot.

Mr Atubiga, who is reported married to President John Mahama’s niece, Judith Hawa Mahama in the US, and whose avowed ambition according to an aide, is to serve Ghana and the NDC to the best of his abilities and conscience won’t be cowed; “nobody…and I repeat nobody can stop him from speaking his mind, not even President Mahama or his wife Madam Lordina Mahama,” the aide fumes.

Reacting to reports intercepted by The Al-Hajj that officials of the ruling party in charge of the party’s communications plans to suspend him from representing the NDC and government on any media platform, an aide to the onetime NDC Parliamentary aspirant for the Binduri constituency, noted that they would be surprise if the party takes such a decision. Stating that news of Mr Atubiga’s purported suspension from the party’s communications team has not yet reached them, the aide said officials of the NDC contemplating such a decision should not dare rattle his boss’ cage since that would only portray the party as being insensitive to Mr Atubiga and would only be adding insult to injury if they take such a decision to gag him.

Reports reaching The Al-Hajj has it that some NDC officials in charge of the party’s communications have blacklisted MrAtubiga, who became famous following his incarceration by the Supreme Court during the election petition hearing challenging President Mahama’s legitimacy, from the party’s communication team over some recent unfavorable comments he was reported to have made in the media.

According to party sources, Atubiga’s recent outburst on the President’s inability to sack the Minister of Agriculture, Mr Clement Kofi Humado over the alleged rot at GYEEDA, and his criticism of the President for appointing the 2012 vice presidential candidate of the Progressive Peoples Party, Madam Eva Lokko to the NITA board, has brought the president and the NDC government into public ridicule and disrepute.

A government source said, Atubiga’s comments smacks of attempt to challenge and undermine the authority of the President and as a sign of punishment for his behavior, officials in charge of the NDC’s communications team have written to media houses not to engage his services as a representative of the party’s communications team.

But an aide to the embattled Atubiga, who had to serve a three days jail term following contemptuous comments he made during the novel election petition hearing, could not fathom why the party would take such a hasty decision without communicating it to the “supposed culprit” or inviting him to give reasons why he made those statements.

“If what you are telling me is true, then those who have hatched this plan must think through their decision immediately. Atubiga has sacrificed for the NDC, he was jailed because of the NDC, what has the party done to wipe his tears? Look, they shouldn’t dare us or we will be force to come out and I can promise you that it will be unpleasant and dreadful,” Atubiga’s aide warned.

All attempts to speak to Mr. Atubiga by press time yesterday proved futile but his aide said, Mr Atubiga is already “a dead goat and fears no knife”, adding that “if those desirous of rattling his cage wants also to become dead goats like him, then they should go ahead of to actualize what they have planned.”

He said MrAtubiga played a vital role in the 2012 victory of the NDC and must be treated with some respect, saying “aside his contribution as a communicator for the party, he has channeled a lot resources into the development of the party. He was also a member of the presidential reconciliation team that mediated between victors and defeated parliamentary aspirants of the party in the last election.