Politics of Monday, 29 August 2016
There is every indication that the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) is bent on portraying the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) as a sick man after efforts to tag him as a divisive character had not washed.
As part of the strategy – as captured in the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) report on the NDC losing power – the governing party, apart from leveling unfounded allegations against Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has been attacking the personality of the NPP leader.
The NDC appears to have contracted the US-based magazine called Africawatch, edited by Steve Mallory (real name, Raymond Poku), to perpetrate the diabolical agenda. The recent copies of the magazine had focused on Nana Addo.
In what looks like a calculated plan between the NDC and Steve Mallory, DAILY GUIDE understands, the magazine is coming out tomorrow with a publication headlined, “NPP campaign in jeopardy…Akufo-Addo has cancer,” to portray the NPP leader as not fit for the election, even though Nana Addo is on his feet campaigning in the Upper East Region as at last night.
The link between the NDC and Steve Mallory was revealed by one of the ruling party’s communicators, Sam George, last Friday when he predicted without any equivocation on radio that the NPP campaign was going to grind to a halt by Monday (today) and that is exactly what the magazine has displayed in its latest edition – 4,000 copies of which were flown in from the United States.
Sam Goerge said boldly on Asempa FM’s afternoon political talk-show, ‘Ekosii Sen,’ that the NDC was going to talk about the health status of Nana Akufo-Addo as well as delve into what he claimed to be the NPP leader’s past social records.
On the cover page of the magazine, Steve Mallory displays a photo-shopped picture of Nana Akufo-Addo to portray him as looking sick with dark spots.
A source close to the medical team of Nana Akufo-Addo reacted to the publication, describing it as ‘scurrilous.”
“He is not suffering from any cancer. They have photo-shopped a picture of Nana Akufo-Addo making him to look sick,” the source said angrily.
“Nana Akufo-Addo is fit and vigorous and is campaigning all over the country,” the source added.
Africawatch is a preferred magazine by the NDC, using its editor to destroy the reputations of perceived opponents of President John Mahama and his NDC administration, just like Montie Fm.
Recently, the same magazine published that former President Jerry John Rawlings was suffering from Parkinson’s disease and DAILY GUIDE learnt that it was orchestrated by elements within the ruling party to cow the founder of their own party into submission.
The publication got Mr Rawlings infuriated, threatening a court action.
A source said the publication was done to spite their founder because they felt he was weighing too much influence on chiefs in the Volta Region, some of who had been complaining about lack of development in their respective areas, in spite of the fact that the region votes massively for the NDC.
The party’s stalwarts felt the founder might cause the chiefs and people of the region to vote against the ruling party in December.
DAILY GUIDE further learnt that the NDC also appears to have facilitated the publication of the interview of suspended NPP National Chairman, Paul Afoko, by the magazine to portray the opposition party as divided, but the Dzifa Attivor ethnocentric comments rendered the publication useless.
It will not be surprising if in the next few days the pro-NDC newspapers feed on what some NPP bigwigs have described as scurrilous publication by the magazine as part of the grand scheme to make Nana Akufo-Addo and his NPP look bad in the eyes of the public.
DAILY GUIDE sources said as part of the NDC campaign strategy it would go all out on Nana Akufo-Addo to provoke him to react so that party activists would describe him as intolerant, using their media hirelings.
President Mahama has been constantly attacking the NPP leaders after intended internal revolt instigated by the ruling party appears to have failed.
Vice President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur also dropped a hint over the weekend that the NDC would go all out to attack the NPP, warning that attacking and leveling allegations against President Mahama, especially describing him “incompetent” leader, would not go without being reacted to.
Boot For Boot
The NDC campaign spokesperson, Joyce Bawa Mogtari, said the NPP must first stop the insults if they want a clean campaign ahead of the December 7 polls.
“When you look at the accusation from the opposition, what I want to ask is, who was the first to describe President Mahama as incompetent?” she queried.
“No matter the circumstances, no matter the level of context, I think that a flagbearer of any political party must at least show some respect and decorum in their speech and the way you describe your opponent so yes, I am saying President Mahama is in campaign mood and has decided to meet the opposition boot for boot,” she fired.
But the NPP insists that the president has been very incompetent in handling the affairs of the country.
The party cited the management of the economy which it says President Mahama has ran down.
According to the major opposition party, corruption and mismanagement have been the order of the day in the Mahama administration, having inherited an economy that was growing at 14 percent in 2009 and succeeded in driving it down to 3 percent in 2016.
Mahama Has No Vision
Nana Akufo-Addo, in his campaign tour of the Upper East Region, said it would be a grave mistake on the part of Ghanaians to retain President Mahama for another four years.
According to the NPP standard bearer, the problems confronting the nation – the rising cost of living, rising levels of unemployment, high utility tariffs, decline in agricultural and industrial output, amongst others – are as a result of President Mahama having “no plan, vision or action to address the problems of our people.”
Nana Addo therefore, stressed, “It would be a mistake to continue with where we are now. So many of the important aspects of our national life, today, are all in retreat. Our economy is in poor shape; and I don’t think there is any honest person in this country, today, who can say Ghana’s economy is working well. It is not working well. Our industries are not working well; our agriculture is not working well; and unemployment amongst our young people is reaching record proportions.”
Akufo-Addo made these observations when he was addressing the Bolgatanga Traditional Council in the Upper East Region yesterday.