Politics of Tuesday, 9 April 2013
Source: The Al-Hajj
Despite the denial by President John Mahama through his aide that he has suddenly transformed himself into a “domestic dictator” as a result of his elevation to the high office of president, his accusers, particularly kingpins of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) remain indifferent, The Al-Hajj can report.
Taking an unyielding stance, the top brass NDC members, whose mettle and influence at the grass root of the party is not in doubt, described the President’s denial as not only a red-herring, but also an attempt to “prepare a meal with a candle light” and geared towards shying away from the reality on the ground.
“Is the President telling us that there were adequate discussions on many of the sensitive decisions he took since taking office and some of which have so far backfired on the face of the government”? A source close to the peeved NDC gurus queried.
Providing ‘further and better’ explanations to the The Al-Hajj in reaction to President Mahama’s firm rejection of accusations that he is running a “one man show” administration, the source cited the appointments and the subsequent unprecedented reshuffle of regional Ministers, the botched attempt to change the name of the seat of government from Flagstaff House, the abortive Pastors pilgrimage to Jerusalem, the unprofessional handling of the teachers’ strike and the payment of ex-gratia to Parliamentarians in the midst of widespread workers agitation and retorted; who and who did the president confer with on these?
According to the source, President Mahama’s simple denial will not wish away their resolve until they see concrete evidence on the ground.
“We the various forces in the party who have been marginalized by the President still stand by our position to file and sponsor a candidate to ‘topple’ him at the next congress of the ruling party to elect a flag bearer for the 2016 election…
“We have not changed our mind, the plan is still intact… as we have said and will continue to say, until, and unless we see that the president takes appropriate steps to make everyone feel a sense of belonging to the great Akatamansonian family, we shall not back down from this noble course.” the source revealed.
With a tinge of anger and in husky tones, a senior member of the party, whose political offspring dominate the NDC remarked “Is the President talking about engaging in wider consultations? My brother, if there were wider consultations for example on the appointments, the President wouldn’t have left out someone the caliber of an astute grass root party man like Samuel Ofosu Ampofo in his government.”
Explicitly indicating he is not holding brief for Mr. Ofosu Ampofo, the NDC guru explained that if there is anybody who has distinguished himself creditably both within the ruling party and government, the former Local Government Minister stands tall, especially “when he has garnered experience from his days as a District Chief Executive under former President Rawlings to a successful National Organizer of the NDC and subsequently as Eastern Regional Minister and Local Government Minister under late President Mills. Why would someone leave such an experienced national asset unutilized?”
Still on appointments, the senior NDC man wondered why president Mahama will reward his 2012 deputy campaign coordinator, Omane Boamah with a ‘superior’ ministerial position over and above that of his boss, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah. An area of concern to some of the apprehensive party people during our interaction is the fate of majority of top party gurus under the Mills’ administration in the new Mahama’s government.
One aggrieved member The Al-Hajj spoke to decry; “where are the Captain Tsikatas, Prof. Awonoors, Lee Ocrans, Ato Ahwois, Alhaji Iddrisu Mahamas, Totobi Quakyis, Don Arthurs, Koku Anyidohos, General Nunoo Mensahs and all the former presidential aides to the late Professor Mills?
Another senior member of the party who is also aggrieved on the way things are moving said the President’s behavior is akin to a leader who feels insecure and paranoid and so trying to adopt measures that he thinks can best protect him. But his advice and perhaps a reminder to President Mahama is that in most cases those desperate measures turn to have a boomerang effect and be rather the undoing of an otherwise a good leader.
According to him, the President should open up the government to all the pool of experienced NDC members, some of whom have served in government for three or more decades, so that he and the nation would benefit from their efficient hands.
“How do you think President Mahama would perform if he should have a very sharp person like Spio Garbrah closer to him and his administration?” The senior member asked rhetorically.
He said, the President should do away with his seeming politics of vendetta and vindictiveness in the NDC party and bring every-body on board to contribute and move the party, the government and the nation forward.
“Just as Obama has appointed experienced hands including his former political foes within the Democratic Party of the United States such as Hilary Clinton, Joe Biden and John Kerry; President Mahama, who claims or said to be the Obama of Ghana should emulate that shining and matured example and appoint or at least bring closer experienced people to help him and help the nation.” The senior member of the NDC said on condition of anonymity.
The NDC big shot pointed out that the fact that all these people who are older and much more experienced than President Obama have served or are serving in the Obama administration means that the experienced NDC hands can also serve in the Mahama administration.
“So, President Mahama should do away with the inferiority complex and vindictive politics within the NDC and tap the knowledge and the experience of senior members of the party, so that the feeling of insecurity and the paranoid in him will vanish.
“The best way to succeed in a democracy is to bring potential rivals closer and also talk to people not to ignore them and think you can marshal some forces somewhere to fight when the day of reckoning draws closer,” the senior NDC member advised.