General News of Friday, 12 April 2013
Source: Daily Guide
Former Finance and Economic Planning Minister Yaw Osafo-Maafo yesterday parried claims that suggest the presidential candidate for the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the 2012 general elections, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, was desperate for political power.
According to him, he has had several discussions with the man and he (Nana Addo) has never given him cause to believe that he wanted to be President by hook or crook.
“I can assure you that I talk quite often to Nana Addo; Nana Addo has not got a desperate desire for power,” he said during the launch of the ‘Justice and Peace Foundation’ in Accra.
Instead, he said, “he’s got a desperate desire to establish the truth to save elections in this country and to have ripples which would make rigging of elections in this country absolutely impossible” insisting “we want future elections to be reliable.”
That, according to him was “the reason Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s pending court challenge against the EC must be celebrated rather than condemned as a desperate desire for power,” he said to a rapturous applaud of the cheering crowd.
For him, “this challenge and the landmark Supreme Court ruling that would emerge will set the right precedent for the conduct of future elections vis-à-vis the EC’s impartial role” insisting that “election results declared by the Electoral Commission must always reflect the sovereign will of the Ghanaian electorate.”
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He therefore stressed the need for all Ghanaians to fight to ensure that this constitutional provision was upheld since, according to him, “action speaks louder than words.”
This, he said was because “if you peddle an image of peace and condone acts that exclude actual peace through the absence of fairness and justice, you lose the moral right to the accolade of a peaceful party.”
“This is not a shouting contest where the party that shouts ‘peace peace’ the loudest is the true adherent of peace,” he emphasized.
Whereas there could be justice without peace, he noted “there can never be lasting peace without justice.”
Granted the individual investment of time, resources and energy and opportunity cost in the prosecution of an outcome of elections, the former Finance Minister said “an election becomes a very personal and emotive event that cannot be wished away by people who use peace as a propaganda tool” asking rhetorically “what about the issues of moral rights, ethics, rule of law, justice and winning fairly, for the genuinely aggrieved other person or party?”
“For how long must the cheated be asked to turn the other cheek in the name of so-called peace? What is the guarantee that the cheat would be magnanimous next time around and play fair? How is future fairness to be assumed when it is true that current power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely?” he wondered.
Mr Osafo-Maafo noted that “as we celebrate mutedly or grieve loudly the outcome of the 2012 elections conducted by Dr Afari Gyan’s Electoral Commission, let us not make selective judgments that peace is more important than justice” since in his own words “there can never be credible peace without demonstrable justice.”
The event was chaired by former Chairman of Council of State under the erstwhile Kufuor-led NPP administrator, Professor Adzei Bekoe.
Present were other dignitaries including former officials of government such as Glady’s Asmah, Minister of Fisheries; Stanley Adjiri-Blankson, AMA Chief Executive; Harona Esseku, former NPP chairman and a host of others.