Feature Article of Thursday, 17 January 2013
Columnist: Nuhu, Kashaa
Whether we like it or not, Ghana is sharply divided politically into two main parties with about 80% of the people belonging to the leading NDC and NPP and a paltry 20% spreading across the undecided voters and the smaller parties. However, members of the smaller parties either flirt with NDC or NPP abating the chances of their parties in winning elections in Ghana. Annotations or proclamations of leaders of the leading political parties in the country have the propensity to unite or polarize the nation and therefore must be circumspect in making such avers in public or private.
Over the months, the habitual loose talks from both NPP and NDC leaders have left the country in limbo as to which direction the peace of our dear nation is drifting towards. The prayer of every Ghanaian is to live in a perpetual tranquility to transact their daily activities without any reservations with one another. To chalk this sensation, it is very imperative upon our political leaders to be more responsible in their critique on opponents with the full knowledge that, they both advocate for the good of the nation from different angles.
The general Secretary of the ruling NDC Johnson Asiedu Nketia has come under severe criticism for his infamous “any idiot can go to court” pronouncement. This made the versatile secretary to become a chewing stick or a tooth brush in the mouth of many members and sympathizers of the opposition New Patriotic Party and again calling of the NPP legal luminaries as “blockheads” as a point of reference in similar and equally unfair statements from members of the NPP communication team. The possible result is that, the country will simply split by the constant insults with justifications by what others have done previously.
As if deliberately selected or elected, the general Secretary of the NPP, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie is one such character that spew venom with its potential nation wreckage tendency. Sir John as he affectionately called by many is known for his excessive fumes and threats which bring the entire nation on its toes prior to the declaration of the 2012 winner. The rank and file of the NPP will neither condemn nor endorse Sir John’s prejudicial comments on NPP’s objection of the panel of the Supreme Court which they later declined to pursue. This has put some sort of doubt on the integrity of Judges to many members and sympathizers of the NPP making it tricky to understand why the declination.
Another rank of leadership whose comments carry wait and can move and shake the nation in negative route is the Chairmanship of the foremost political Parties. Dr. Kwabena Adjei, the Chairman of the NDC was heard made some intolerable remarks about having so many ways of killing a cut sometime back. That comment is more often referred to by the opposition to rationalize a likewise hateful engagement. Leaders of political parties especially the topmost ones must be very responsible to make assertion that will unite and explicit in calming the nerves of their supporters to remain resolute to their parties and Ghana.
Jake Otanka Obestebi Lamptey is the Chairman of the NPP and has similarly discharge contemptible ethnocentric message to supporters of his party when he asked them to rise and take their birth right just as the Akans in Ivory Coast. This can break or plunge the nation into chaos and deserve collective condemnation by all meaning Ghanaians. The NDC were quick just as the NPP to point out some of this bigotry as though they are going to cease hence forth. The people take words and statements from these gurus in their parties very solemn and stand the chance of making peace or otherwise from whatever are said. Let the leaders of our parties be wary of what they preach to their supporters.
The most dangerous of all is the pro media houses of the NPP and NDC. Both the print and electronic media have the mandate to educate, inform and entertain and not to misinform and be selective in their education. Leaders or party financiers hide behind the papers and radio stations to foment trouble by their invariable financing of hoodlums who are behind the media to verbally attack opponents with unwarranted allegations and fabrications with so much impunity.
These publications can comprehensively cause mayhem in the country when remain uncensored by the authorities. National media Commission has the mandate to name and shame unscrupulous media houses that engaged in this practice. We must let the source of ignition of the Rwandan genocide be a constant reminder to us in Ghana and lead exemplary life for the supporters of the various parties to emulate.
The National Peace Council, Religious Leaders, IPAC, Civil Society Organization to mention but a hand full must be proactive on our political leaders and their pronouncement to circumvent any prospective calamity that can befall our nation. The intercessory prayers by religious group to avert any catastrophe will be meaningless if our political leaders do not change their insensitive tongue to their vulnerable supporters. The heads of the aforementioned groups must engage leaders of our parties from time to time to discourage inflammable speech and discuss issues relating to peace for a better country for us all.
Finally, leaders, rank and file and communication members of our political parties representing their parties on media platform must not hide behind freedom of speech to outer trash. The democratic ingredient of freedom of speech comes with gross responsibility and veritably not immunity or cover for loose talk. Party leaders should put punitive measures to punishing members who are reported to insult or make derogatory public statements on opponents to serve as deterrent to others. The parties must not condone but condemn members who deliberately provoke political opponents for mischief purposes.
We need a united front to create jobs, attract investors, provide an enabling environment for businesses to thrive and make an industrialized country to bridge the developmental gap between Ghana and the other developed countries. A discordant Country stands the risk of breaking down to lose all the great compliments credited for a serene atmosphere for growth. Our political leaders audaciously have to eschew pride and think of Ghana first without disdainful pronouncements that can overturn the fortunes of the country. It is very expedient for our political gurus to know that, when they sneeze, the country has the tendency to catch cold.
Ghana needs to be spared with the perplexities of our political leader’s “verbal diarrhea” to live the peace of the country undisturbed as they can move their grassroots to act positively or adversely. Ghana our beloved country must be strong and live together in peace.
Kashaa Nuhu [email protected]