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Politics of Tuesday, 11 July 2006

Source: The Sun

Rawlings Chases Defectors

THE NATIONAL Democratic Congress (NDC) party has suddenly woken up to the realization that, with the disappearance of the wolf, next the lion, next the giraffe, next the hippopotamus, next the elephant, that is the beginning of the end of the jungle.

And so behind the scenes and outside the views of prying and inquisitive eyes, a select caucus is working hard at stemming the tide of defectors. “We may say in public that the party is just like the TRO-TRO where there is embarking and dis-embarking at any one point in time but then, it is negative image that has the propensity to do us in,” a powerful and double-chinned NDC stalwart observed.

First was Kofi Asante whose knowledge of Energy matters pales into insignificance even those running the Ministry at the present time. Then cameDr. Obed Yao Asamoah’s fall out, then Frances Asiam, Kwaku Baah then Okaidja Adamafio,then Dr. Wayo Seini. Since then, the list has been expanding and lengthening by the day.

It appears a conglomeration of factors continue to dance in the boiling soup, for all of a sudden, so-called faithfuls find themselves in a quagmire, having been confronted by four strong candidates, three of whom have Mr. Rawlings’ backing.

The business tycoon, Eddie Annan who is said to have literally parceled a luxurious car to the Rawlingses, is in the forefront. So also is Dr. Ekow Spio-Garbrah, eloquent in speech and quick-thinking in mind who has everything other than money.

There is also the emergence of the comparatively young and affable John Mahama, often down-graded, yet wielding so much appeal, who appears to be the last born of the ex-President’s favourites.

In the background remains the unwell Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, who had spent cash he earned in a Canadian University on unpaid bills at the party headquarters in Accra.

Fact remains that, the faithful feel it in the fibre of their being that the ex-President wields so much clout and is scheming just like the confused Ghanaian kingmaker, to get someone to ascend the throne.

They feel hurt and betrayed that Prof. Mills has been relegated to the background, and abandoned in his present poor financial and medical state. “And so this loyalist makes a quick dash to the left, and another to the right, which is giving the center that is to hold a bad name,” the double-chinned source stated disappointingly.

Last week, even close aides to the ex-President had to be dispatched as diplomatic emissaries to defectors’ homes, to persuade them to beat a retreat.

It is an irony of fate that the perceived enemy did not destroy the NDC. Rather, what appeared to have held the party together, now appears to be tearing it apart. Only time, will tell.