By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
March 21, 2016
They have been burying their heads, like peacocks, in the sand and facilely pretending that reason and healthy collective self-interest could prevail well in time enough to enable them get their act together. But, alas, it is becoming increasingly clear that unless a miracle happens within the next couple of months, the ill-fate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Ghana’s largest opposition party – actually the party of the Ghanaian majority – would be sealed. Our old Akan elders and sages have a saying that “You can only be afforded a good push, if you climb up the right tree.”
This clearly appears to be what Ms. Grace Omaboe (aka Maame Dokono) meant, when the veteran actress lamented bitterly to a Peacefm Radio entertainment-program host about the nihilistic behavior of the top-echelon membership of the NPP the other day (See “I Pity Nana Akufo-Addo – Maame Dokono” Ghanaweb.com 3/21/16). The caption that accompanied the story, or perhaps I should more aptly say that crowned the story, that carried Ms. Omaboe’s cautionary lament was wrongly composed because it erroneously sought to imply that only the 2016 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, stood to massively lose if the third post-Kufuor attempt by the party to be returned to the Jubilee-Flagstaff House failed once again.
The fact of the matter, however, is that contrary to what Ms. Omaboe would have her audiences believe, the New Patriotic Party is not about the presidential ambitions of only Nana Akufo-Addo; rather, Ghana’s majority party represents the hopes and aspirations of at least a full-half of the 27 million people, or so, who make up the population of the country. In sum, if Akufo-Addo, once again, goes down at the polls come November, the three-time NPP’s Presidential Candidate would be going down with the very hopes and aspirations of at least some 14 million Ghanaians! This number could be actually much higher if one also factors in the teeming numbers of deeply disaffected National Democratic Congress’ members and supporters and sympathizers who are dead-set against repeating the painful mistake of voting for a faux-socialist and pathologically self-serving Mahama-led government, whose key operatives appear to be only capable of what one implacably furious jurist once poignantly described as a government unconscionably hell-bent on “creating, looting and sharing” the collective wealth of our country among themselves.
Indeed, it goes without saying that Nana Akufo-Addo cannot be wholly exculpated from his fair share of the problems raging among the top-echelon membership of the New Patriotic Party. Nevertheless, it is equally important to underscore the fact that it takes two to tango. The seemingly pathological inability or studied and deliberate intransigence of some party factionalists hell-bent on railroading the presidential ambitions of the three-time NPP flagbearer cannot be overlooked or lightly glossed over. As for the so-called much-touted Afoko Factor, the less time wasted in discussing the same the absolutely better it would redound to the good fortunes of the party at large.
Unlike what Ms. Omaboe would have the rest of us believe, the indisputable fact of the matter is that prior to the announcement of his indefinite suspension from the party’s chairmanship, Mr. Paul Afoko was not known to have been working hard to promote the long-term interests and agenda of the party’s presidential candidate and his running-mate, Dr.-Alhaji Mahamudu Bawumia, in much the same way that it could be readily and unreservedly said of the recently deceased Mr. Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey and his predecessors, as well as such legendary party stalwarts and unquestionable giants as Messrs. Peter Ala Adjetey, Harouna Esseku and Samuel Odoi-Sykes, my well-respected and distinguished in-law.
Personally, I am convinced that the acid slain Mr. Adams Mahama would have done far better in attracting the northern votes to both Nana Akufo-Addo and the New Patriotic Party as a whole than could be positivistically said of Mr. Afoko. The hard and clear-cut evidence simply does not exist! As for the several number of disgruntled parliamentary candidates who are threatening to go independent, the merits of their individual grievances is what matters; for at the end of the day such grievances as any of them might have is indubitably about justice and fair play. And if the party leadership cannot prove beyond an iota of doubt that it has been fair and impartial in its dealings with all the aggrieved and/or disgruntled failed parliamentary candidates, then, of course, these party chiefs have absolutely no right, whatsoever, to be voted into the august seat of party governance.
Ultimately, what the key actors of the two major factions objectively and indisputably identified within the New Patriotic Party ought to soberly bear in mind is that a third and, possibly, final defeat for Akufo-Addo at the presidency may well witness the eternal split and effective disintegration of the Danquah-Busia-Dombo Tradition as we presently know it. Indeed, the Kyerematen faction could well be headed towards the imminent creation of a Kufuor Tradition. But the significant question of how winsome and inclusive such a tradition would become is anybody’s good guess.
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs