A self-restrained Omane Boamah, Minister of Communication has fired canons of warnings laced with frustrations at the leadership style of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) President Dr. Opoku-Adusei, in the on-going strike. But General Secretary, Dr. Frank Sereboe has fired back.
Dr. Boamah, a calm discussant on Metro TV’s Good Morning Ghana last week, had little of his cool today when on the show he said:
“I think that the Dr. Opoku-Adusei administration will have to be extremely careful in terms of how they sink the image of the Ghana Medical Association.”
If the Minister sounded appreciative last week, today he accusingly said the President of the GMA was hijacking the Association.
“You are presenting the GMA as a group that doesn’t actually represent what truly we stand for. If the President is not careful he may end up as the President who dissipated the image of the GMA”.
The Minister in a typical T.B Joshua style said he prophesied about unguarded statements by the GMA President after Dr. Opoku-Adusei warned the Minister of Health, Sherry Ayittey that “if she wanted to see people die, she will have it”.
The Minister recounted his prophesy.
“When the strike was declared I called somebody and told him, mark my words, in two days time if you leave the communication of this strike to Dr. Opoku-Adusei, he will mess up this strike for doctors and it happened”.
The medical doctor-turned Minister of Communications conceded that the issues raised by the GMA were legitimate but pointed out that the leadership of the GMA have been continually shifting the post.
But the Minister’s analysis was met with a foreseeable disagreement from Managing editor of the New Crusading Guide, Kweku Baako and an unforeseeable phone-in session by the General Secretary of the GMA, Dr. Frank Sereboe.
Taking turns, Mr. Baako was skeptical of Dr. Boamah’s commentary. “It is difficult to accept the undue personalization of the presidency of Dr. Opoku-Adusei rooted in your analysis”, he responded.
He felt it was difficult to accept that one person could lead an Association of intelligent professionals on a “jolly ride”.
He characterized the Minister’s posture as a psychological attempt to destabilize the Association by using a divide and rule tactic.
Mr. Baako was not alone in his view.
GMA General Secretary, Dr. Frank Sereboe in an unsual twist of events was allowed to respond via phone.
He revealed that ” Dr. Opoku-Adusei does not determine whether we should go on strike or call us to go on strike. When we have to go on strike it is the Council composed of representatives from all the regions and Opoku-Adusei has one vote. So if he votes that we should go on strike and 19 of us oppose him there is no way we will go on strike. Dr. Omane Boamah knows this”
He rejected accusations of goal-shifting by outlining the three fueling causes of the strike – premium issues, conversion difference and reduced pensions.
The General Secretary revealed that so far government had made attempts to resolve only one of the issues at stake.
“What we have in our hands now is the market premuim. If we don’t resolve the conversion difference which will correct the pensions there is no way we are going back to work because the members are even angrier than the leadership.”