Once again, given the prime opportunity to indemnify both himself and the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) from the latter’s record of wanton political violence and barbarous mayhem, Transitional-President John Dramani Mahama chose the low, under-belt road of empty incrimination, when he told a majestic durbar of chiefs and people of the Asante Region, in Kumasi, that “There should be nothing like ‘all-die-be-die’” in the run-up to Election 2012. The former arch-lieutenant to the late President John Evans Atta-Mills further added, “All of us are Ghanaians” (See “No ‘all-die-be-die’: Prez Mahama Declares” Modernghana.com 8/30/12).
I find the foregoing remarks to be deeply troubling because Mr. Mahama woefully failed to remind his noble audience that, indeed, it was the late President Atta-Mills, a veritable Rawlings lickspittle, for the most part, who first publicly vowed to rain a Kenya type of apocalyptic mayhem on his countrymen and women, in the event of the National Democratic Congress’ losing of Election 2008; and that, really, Nana Akufo-Addo was merely cautioning his violence-prone political opponents against any dastardly resort to the vigilante use of violence in the lead-up to Election 2012, when he rightfully invoked the already-established mantra of “All-Die-Be-Die.”
Of course, the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) had to also warn the pathologically anti-Akan wing of the National Democratic Congress against any nescient and bestial attempt to, once again, launch an open-season of mayhem against Ghanaians of Akan ethnic descent, as happened under the Rawlings-led governments of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) and the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC).
It was also rather laughable and abjectly insulting to the intelligence of both the people of the Asante Region and the country at large, to hear President Mahama glibly assert that it was Divine Providence, the genius creator of designer-tailored Paradigm-Shifts, who was apt to selecting a replacement for President Mills in Election 2012. “God himself will select a leader for our country,” the Russian-trained former Minister of Communications under Mr. Rawlings pontifically declared.
Of course, one did not have to stretch one’s imagination any further to realize the fact that Mr. Mahama was presumptuously preening himself. Likewise, rather cheaply and unconscionably preying on the funerary vulnerability of the culture-steeped Asante people, in particular, and Ghanaians, in general, Mr. Mahama alluded to the recent burial of the late President Mills, a man who, according to the globally trusted Wikileaks exposé, harbored an inveterate hatred for all things Asante, to pretend as if the late premier had either the individual and/or collective interests of Asante-descended Ghanaians at heart.
President Mahama also, literally, shot himself in the foot when he, reportedly, “expressed concern about the decline in the nation’s time-tested traditions and culture concerning respect for the aged and the elderly and appealed to the chiefs [of the Asante Region who are supposed to be] the custodians of Ghanaian culture, to help stem” this anomalous phenomenon. Maybe somebody ought to remind the politically desperate transitional president of his own insolent impugnation of the relative temporal advancement of Nana Akufo-Addo in the wake of the recent expiration of President Mills.
Needless to say, were he an honest leader, Mr. Mahama would have ruefully and apologetically detailed the untold atrocities gleefully perpetrated against elderly Ghanaians in the specious name and guise of “revolution,” as well as the perennial season of abject disrespect for the aged and elderly by the Rawlings regime during the course of some two decades. Interestingly, even as yours truly writes (8/30/12), key operatives of the National Democratic Congress are busy campaigning against Nana Akufo-Addo on the vacuous grounds of the latter’s being supposedly too old to effectively govern the country.
Surprisingly, in the wake of the recent demise of President John Evans Atta-Mills, the same people were beside themselves with mournful wistfulness, lamenting the purportedly “untimely passing” of the Patron Saint of the Judgment-Debt gravy train and economic policy agenda of the ruling National Democratic Congress.
Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D., is Associate Professor of English, Journalism and Creative Writing at Nassau Community College of the State University of New York, Garden City. He is Director of The Sintim-Aboagye Center for Politics and Culture and author of “Marlena: Sexual Indignities” (Lulu.com, 2009). E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.