President John Dramani Mahama has tried hard to justify his covert campaign tour – ‘accounting to the people’ – describing it as a mere official tour of the country to inspect and showcase the many projects undertaken by his government.
The tour, which has taken the president to the Western and the Eastern Regions in the past weeks, has been described by critics – including the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) – as a campaign tour and abuse of incumbency.
However, speaking at separate durbars in the Volta Region during the inauguration of the Dodo-Pepesu to Nkwanta section of the Eastern Corridor road and in the Hohoe municipality, President Mahama said he was rendering account to Ghanaians who gave him the mandate during the last election.
He likened the tour to how traditional rulers regularly hold durbars to update their subjects about developments in their areas, saying, “It is prudent for me as the president, to update Ghanaians about projects and programmes this government has undertaken in the last three years.”
He said, “If you had been watching TV or listening to radio you would have heard that I went to the Western Region and from there I came to the Eastern Region and what I am doing is called accounting to the people tour to render account of what I have done to the people.”
“We inaugurated cold stores in the Western Region to help the fishermen preserve their catch if they are unable to sell all of them, not only that; we have commissioned roads in the region. In the Eastern Region too we commissioned a new hospital and a pantoon at Agordeke…so it is the turn of the Volta Region now,” President Mahama explained.
He further stressed, “I have not started campaigning yet. After the launch of the NDC campaign I will come back and I will be in full political battle dress……”
Contradiction: NDC Flags Everywhere
Despite the justification, happenings on the ground proved otherwise as party colours had virtually swallowed the national colours which were supposed to be prominent at such so-called national assignments.
Apart from the vehicles of the NDC, some government vehicles were seen with NDC flags. Even the podium on which the president and other dignitaries sat in Hohoe was totally decorated in NDC colours, except the back portion which had a Ghana Flag, virtually hidden.
Some residents who read through the lines and spoke to DAILY GUIDE, wondered why the whole area was adorned with NDC colours and not the national ones, if the president really came in the name of Ghana.
Edem Hieme said but for the lectern which had the Coat of Arms on it, the durbar ground would have easily been mistaken for an NDC function.
Meanwhile, the paramount chief of Akpafu, Nana Afrifa Akuamoah IV, who spoke on behalf of all the nine paramountcies in the Hohoe municipality, observed that despite the many developments claimed to have been carried out in the region, it was still clear that the “Volta Region is yet to receive its fair share of the national cake.”