Feature Article of Saturday, 6 April 2013
Columnist: Damptey, Daniel Danquah
but the ranting of an ant.
The words of our elders are words of wisdom. The wise man hears and gets wiser. As a person grows older, he/she increases in wisdom and integrity. Such a person is revered and looked upon as a person to be relied upon especially in moment of crises. He/She speaks the truth no matter whose ox is gored. He/she does not inflame passions; neither does he/she fabricate stories to malign those who do not share in the same political or religious persuasion.
Such laudable qualities could only be found in very few people. Most adults, because of their deficiencies cannot stand up to be counted amongst the chosen few. This group of personalities are imbued with certain negative traits which erode any bit of virtue left in them as they grow older. The bile in them takes a greater toil on their senses. With their system devoid of all God-given qualities, such people have no option but to exhibit the venom that have accumulated in their system after years of frustration and jealousy. They just cannot understand why others have carved a niche for themselves whilst they struggle to find themselves in dishonourable graves.
One such personality that quickly comes to mind is Justice Kpegah, a former Justice of the Supreme Court. Yes, Justice Kpegah is full of venom and ready to spit it out on those he feels have deprived him of his legal portfolio.
In Ghana and other countries in the sub-region, Supreme Court Judges, including retired ones have become mentors to the youth. A good example is Justice Chukwudi Oputa, a retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. He headed the Oputa Panel that probed human rights violations after the Civil War. His impeccable records during the period he served as Supreme Court Judge and after, have endeared him to many people.
But can we say same of Justice Kpegah? Definitely, not! Here is a man who has spent all his life taking away the little comfort of the poor and downtrodden masses in the country. Here is a so-called legal luminary who became a member of the Supreme Court speaking through the nose and insulting Ghanaians that even though he has retired, he would continue to reside in the bungalow assigned to him while in service without paying any rent and if people did not like it, they could go and burn the sea.
This same senile personality has come up with a ridiculous and unintelligent allegation that Nana Akufo-Addo, NPP Flag-bearer in the December, 2012 Elections is not a lawyer. He based his quixotic analysis on the fact that when he went through the list of all lawyers in the country during the period he served as Acting Chief Justice, he could not find Akufo Addo’s name. Such allegation is laughable, petty, diabolical and unmeritorious.
Now, the posers: When did he become Acting Chief Justice? Many years ago! Before even the appointment of Her Lordship Mrs Theodora Georgina Wood as the substantive Chief Justice! Why did he keep quiet all those years?
One would have expected him to have spoken out when the former First Lady, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings made the allegation before the December, 2008 Elections? That allegation was debunked by the late President Mills.
Another point which tears his argument into shreds is the fact that every year, the Ghana Bar Association publishes a list of lawyers in good standing. And prominent on the list is that of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo.
So what is the man saying or suggesting here? But we don’t have to blame him. He needs our sympathy more than anybody in the country. As he grows older, his sense of reasoning becomes dulled by the bile in his system. The Bible even speaks of such people by saying that “seeing they will not see” and “hearing they will not hear”.
The man sees Akufo Addo as the architect of his own misfortune. He holds him responsible for his inability to clinch the coveted position of Chief Justice – a position he would have loved to flaunt about to give the impression that he too had arrived.
But one thing this political mistake has failed to recognize is the fact that Nature does not allow any vacuum for “Nature does work miracles. Nature has her own Laws. Seeds take time to mature”
This is a fact that all sane persons know. Of course, we do not expect a senile and unmitigating disaster like Justice Kpegah to know this. He is so much seeped in hatred that there is not an iota of truth and virtue left in him. Surrounded by other mischief makers like himself, all he does everyday is to plot on how to bring down his betters. What is he saying? That the Flag bearer of the NPP is impersonating one W.A.D.Akufo-Addo! He further alleges that the owner of the academic credentials being paraded by Akufo Addo had died and been hurriedly buried under mysterious circumstances.
What is wrong with the initials WAD? Williams Addo Dankwa? The onus lies on the disgruntled and sullen looking Justice Kpegah to produce documents relating to the so-called W.A.D. Akufo Addo. Has anyone complained about the loss/disappearance of a relative bearing that name? Let us search whether any person bearing same initials and name apart from the NPP’s flag-bearer has ever criss-crossed this sinful world of ours.
This allegation is similar to the lies concocted by agents of destabilisation unleashed on the country by Lucifer himself that the UP (Mate Me Ho) had put a bomb in a bouquet of flowers and given it to a little school girl to be delivered to late President Nkrumah at Kulungungu. According to these agents, the bomb exploded and blew up the little girl into smithereens.
Recently, the late President’s official photographer, one Reverend Minister has come out to debunk such allegation. Hitler said “if you tell a big lie long enough, the people will believe it”.
Let Justice Kpegah travel to all the nooks and crannies of the country to find out if any such person bearing that name has ever lived on this earth. Akufo Addo is a family name found mostly at Akropong-Akuapem, Kibi and Abomosu. In a similar mien the FWK has been the initials of the Akuffo Family of Akropong-Akuapem. Our late Head of State, Lt. Gen. Akuffo and the Reverend Akuffo of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana all bore the initials, F.W.K. which when transcribed means Frederick Williams. But the initial K meant something different to different people. It could be Kwame, Kwasi, or Kwaku. Later on in his life, Dr F.W.K. Akuffo of the Tema General Hospital changed the initial K to A. The Kwasi became Akwasi. There was no hullabaloo about that.
In our Ghanaian context, one can change his initial or one of his names without necessarily going through the process of name changing. And that is how Andrew Ahwoi suddenly metamorphosed into Ato Ahwoi. If it is acceptable for Ato Ahwoi to change his Andrews to Ato, why should a similar courtesy be denied Akufo-Addo? It is not as if Akufo Addo has changed his entire name to read something different. Williams to Nana! Is that what ails Justice Kpegah?
We should not forget that in the seventies and early eighties, most Ghanaians resorted to name changing to reflect their African origins. And that was how James Ngugi, the famous Kenyan Writer came to be known as Ngugi Wa Thiengo. Go and find out, there was no formal name change. Even Mr Kwesi Ahwoi, current Minister of Interior, when he first joined the teaching staff of Abuakwa State College at Kibi, introduced himself as Nana Kwesi Ahwoi. Till today, some of the students he taught still refer to him by that name.
My mother (May her soul be blessed) lived ahead of her time and gave titles like Doctor, Lawyer, Principal, Manager to her children. Some of my siblings still bear those names. A family member became born again and decided to change one of his names because it had a semblance to a god. He expunged that particular name from the rest. And the Heavens have not fallen.
I know of many classmates of mine who changed their names without going through the process but their new names have stayed. One was called Isaac Hayfred Johnson but he changed it to Kofi Krafona. The late MP for Atiwa was called Alex Annor Bernard Ankamah. He changed it to Akwasi Ankamah.
It is pertinent to state that when people are installed Chiefs, they take on stool names and lose their former identity. They do not have to swear affidavits to that. What has our sullen looking Justice Kpegah got to say to that?
Justice Kpegah must be made to substantiate his allegations with facts and figures. Accusing someone of murder is a serious thing. Let him tell Ghanaians who was that William Akufo Addo, when he died and where he was buried?
If there is any doubt about the identity of the real W.A.D.Akufo Addo, the best place to ascertain the truth is to go to the Middle Temple where Akufo Addo was called to the Bar. It is as simple as ABC. This is something any person with common sense would have done before coming up with such a wild allegation. I wonder why Justice Kpegah forgot this basic elementary principle. But the answer is not far-fetched. Our learned Justice is rotten deep down. The miscarriage of justice he might have indulged in during his tenure as a Judge might be haunting him now.
What happened when he was a Judge and Nana Akufo Addo appeared before him? If Akufo Addo is an imposter as Justice Kpegah would want to portray the former, why could he not detect it when Akufo Addo appeared before courts which were presided over by him? The fact that a supposedly imposter was able to bamboozle Kpegah to earn favourable verdicts in itself is an indictment of Justice Kpegah. It shows how incompetent and fickle minded he was.
But the discredited and sullen looking Justice revealed the shallow mindedness of his knowledge when he himself indulged in the same “crime” which he has accused his antagonist of. He signed his petition as a Supreme Court Judge. When challenged he revealed his ignorance by saying that once you become a Supreme Court Judge, you remain so for life. What a porous logic. I wish I could be compelled to tow that line but I cannot because his argument is infantile and hollow. Yes, you hold the title for life but you can only use the title Justice, not Supreme Court Justice. It has to be prefixed with the designation “a Former Justice of the Supreme Court” or a retired Judge of the Supreme Court.
That is how it is supposed to be. Both Rawlings and Kufuor have been Presidents of the country. There will be confusion in the system if we still refer to them as Presidents Rawlings and Kufuor respectively. To remove any confusion we always refer to them as Ex-President or Former President. So Justice Kpegah cannot hide under any legal jargon to claim the title of Justice of the Supreme Court.
Permit me, avid readers to state here that what we are witnessing in the country today is a harvest of all the seed of misadventure, misdirection, misinformation, confusion, tribalism, hatred, unpatriotism, madness and blatant lies which were imported into the country and cemented by a cabal led by Justice Kpegah and his hatchet men to take through the back-door what they could not acquire in the open.
Justice Kpegah is a political and legal mistake who must be avoided at all cost if one does not want to acquire the senile madness disease. When you see him approaching, please, do look for the nearest escape route otherwise you will be infected by the senile madness virus.
If indeed Justice Kpegah does not have the virus, why should he describe himself as Deputy Chief Justice, a nomenclature which does not exist in our legal system? He speaks as if his mind was not stable.
I feel our legal system must have some form of punishment for those who waste the time of the courts by bringing frivolous accusations to malign the character and credibility of responsible individuals in the society.
Justice Kpegah has played the role of Judas Iscariot. People had for a long time been looking for an opportunity to crucify Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo for being the icon who can sanitize the society. Nobody has had the guts to do that. But Justice Kpegah has just done that. He has been used by the negative forces congregating together with one main purpose – to crucify Akufo Addo.
In conclusion, let me re-iterate the fact that Akufo Addo is not afraid to face Justice Kpegah in court. They will meet in court, eyeball to eyeball and we shall know who is who. But Tsatsu Tsikata must speak out. He and Nana Akufo Addo have been on the same legal team before. So I ask, “Tsatsu, what do you say to this wild allegation. Is Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo a lawyer”? Late President Mills did the most honourable thing by affirming that Nana Akufo Addo is a lawyer.
Would you Tsatsu stand firm and be counted amongst the faithful? Or you want to re-enact the ignoble role of Peter, who for fear of his life denied a person he had followed, loved and cherished. Worst still, would you be Brutus in Julius Caesar and Biblical Judas Iscariot to stab and betray a man you know deep down in your heart is innocent of the allegation against him?
Daniel Danquah Damptey ([email protected]) 0243715297.