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Politics of Friday, 30 September 2016

Source: Kwabena Amankwah

NDC's Ugly Tribal Politics

-Says he must vote for Nana if Northerners should vote for Mahama

Nana Yaw Dwamena

The Vice presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Mahamudu Bawumai, has asked the Chief of Staff to vote for Nana Akufo-Addo when he goes to the polls on December 7, if he is convinced about the tribal and regional based campaign he is championing among the electorate in the three regions of the north in his desperate effort to save his boss from the imminent defeat.

Chief of Staff Julius Debrah, during his recent campaign tour to the northern part of the country, asked the electorate there to vote for President Mahama because "he is your own brother".

Making allusion to his comments, Dr Bawumia wondered why the Chief of Staff was not applying the same principle to urge the electorate in the Eastern Region to also vote for the Presidential Candidate of the NPP, Nana Akufo-Addo, who hails from that region.
The Chief of Staff is from the Eastern Region, and Dr Bawumia believes per his own logic he should be prepared to cast his votes for Nana Akufo-Addo at the December 7 polls, if indeed voting for someone from "your region is what is needed to positively transform the lives of an individual or group".
"Over the weekend we heard the Chief of Staff in the North saying that John Mahama is from the North so people from the North should vote for him. Ironically, the Chief of Staff is from the Eastern region, so why is he not voting for Nana Akufo-Addo? The Chief of Staff thinks he can deceive us," Dr Bawumia said yesterday.
He added: "The people of the North do not need the Chief of Staff to remind them that Mahama is their brother; the people of the North are witnesses to the corruption and incompetence. What happened to the SADA money? The people of the North remember how John Mahama allowed money meant for their development to be stolen by his people."
Addressing a rally at Diaso in the Upper West Denkyira Constituency of the Central region, Dr Bawumia stated that the NDC, realising that the record of President Mahama is a bad one on which it cannot campaign and win the upcoming elections, had decided to seek refuge in the message of division.
"If the NDC think they have done enough, why should they use tribal politics? If President John Mahama believes he has done enough for the north, northerners would have seen it themselves and would not need the Chief of staff to tell them what the President has done," he said.
Dr Bawumia observed that the NDC had resorted to campaign of division, regionalism and tribalism because it had realized the Mahama record of unprecedented corruption and incompetence cannot be used to convince the electorate.
He, however, noted that the crude tactic was destined to fail because the people would ultimately remember the John Mahama administration for its corruption, mismanagement and the hardships foisted on the people.
"The NDC know that they have not performed. They know they did not work for us and so they have decided to preach division in this country with the hope that it will help them. They have begun and will tell you that the NPP does not like Northerners or this group or the other group so doesn't vote for them. Is this what develops a nation? If you have performed, everyone will know you have performed. You will not need to play one group against the other to win", Dr Bawumia said.
He explained to the gathering that the December 7 election is ultimately about who can deliver to improve on the lives of the people, noting that even though he is from the North, he would not just campaign on that fact.
He said the most important reason why the NPP must be voted for in the December election is that the party, led by Nana Akufo-Addo, has the competent and visionary team that can be trusted to change the lives of Ghanaians positively and bring the development, jobs and prosperity desired.
Dr Bawumia, who has been on a tour of constituencies in the Central region since Monday, was accompanied on his tour in the Upper West Denkyira Constituency by Member of Parliament for the Constituency, Benjamin Ayeh, and the NPP Parliamentary Candidate for the Constituency, Samuel Nsonwa Gyan.

Your anger against NDC is baseless
-Mahama man tells Volta Chiefs
Benjamin Kpodo, National Democratic Congress Member of Parliament for Ho Central, says he finds it difficult to understand why the Chiefs and people of Volta Region should be angry with the Mahama government over what they see as its lack of commitment to their developmental needs.
The MP is particularly nonplussed by the behaviour of the Chief of Kpenoe Traditional Area, Togbe Kotoku XI, who led a press conference on Tuesday to issue a two-week ultimatum to the Mahama government to fix their deplorable roads, with the threat that no political activity would be allowed in the area if their demand was not met.
The Chiefs of Volta Region have intensified their agitations against the Mahama government, which they have accused of only interested in their votes, and not their well-being.
Togbe Afede XIV, Agbogbomefia of Asogli and President of Volta Region House of Chiefs, recently accused the NDC of not showing interest in developmental issues in the region, adding that the governing party had taken the region for granted, with a show of gross disrespect towards the chiefs and the people.
The latest agitations are coming from the Paramount and Divisional Chiefs of Kpenoe, Takla and Hodzo communities in the Ho Municipality, who have given the Mahama government a two-week ultimatum to fix their deplorable roads.
Speaking at a press conference Tuesday, the Paramount Chief of Kpenoe Traditional Area, Togbe Kotoku XI, warned that failure to commence works on their roads would leave them with no option than to block the roads to vehicular traffic.
They will subsequently declare a 'three month of communal labor' to fix the roads themselves, and during that no political party will be allowed to carry out its activities in the area.
Before yesterday's press conference, the youth of the area had gone on a series of demonstrations to draw the attention of the government to the poor nature of their roads.
The Chief lamented that the roads linking their three communities to the Ho, the regional capital, arre the worst in the Municipality.
Togbe Kotoku XI further indicated that he and his people felt neglected by the NDC government when it comes to development.
"We have made several attempts to bring government's attention to our plight. Our youth organized demonstrations and sent petitions to no avail. Tension is gradually mounting among our youth over the seemingly neglect of our roads whilst some other roads in the municipality are being fixed with enthusiasm ahead of the December polls.
"We are therefore praying that some work starts on our roads in two weeks; if not, we will block the roads and declare three months of communal labor to fix our roads", he stressed.
Togbe Kotoku XI threatened: "during this period, we will ban any political activity in the traditional areas to ensure that our people remain focused and committed to the work on the roads. Should any political party take the risk and come here, we can't guarantee their safety."
Although a bulldozer was seen clearing shoulders of the roads, the Chiefs believe it is one of government's gimmicks for political gains.
"We have seen a rickety bulldozer on the roads about three days ago but since nobody has come to introduce the contractor to us, we are sure they are not in for real business, perhaps the government only wants to use this as a camouflage to get votes from us", one stressed.
Commenting on the position of the Chiefs on Anopa Kasapa on Kasapa 102.5 FM yesterday, the Ho Cetral MP, Benjamin Kpodo, said he was taken aback by the harsh decision of the Chiefs, led by Togbe Kotoku XI.
According to him, the deplorable roads in the area are age-long problem, claiming that the Mahama administration had earnestly put in much effort fix the problem. He said a contractor had begun working on the roads.
"I have been engaging them. All documents covering the project we're undertaking, I have shown it to them when I recently met them. The Assemblyman; Togbe Kotoku XI, for instance, has access to all the documents and I am surprised that these things are happening. Maybe, because the other road (there are two Lots on one paper) went earlier they think that they will complete that one and leave theirs, but I have constantly assured them that we'll do it. And fortunately the second contractor has showed up and he's clearing the road," the MP claimed in the radio interview.