The Most Reverend Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle grossly misplaces our Fourth Republican political priorities when he suggests that the aftermath of the Supreme Court decision on the 2012 presidential election petition ought to lead to the formation of a “unity government,” comprising of the key operatives of Ghana’s two major political parties, namely, the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Akufo-Addo chaperoned New Patriotic Party (NPP) – (See Palmer-Buckle Proposes Unity Government After SC Judgment and Ghanaweb.com 8/22/13).
For starters, the problem here is fundamentally criminal in nature, one that inescapably involves electoral cheating; consequently, for the Metropolitan Archbishop of Accra to suggest that people forensically guilty of the usurpation of the mandate of the Ghanaian electorate ought to be rewarded with democratic authority is rather curious and bizarre, to speak much less about the downright preposterous. Instead, what needs to happen here is the prompt and swift bringing to book of the criminal suspects and culprits. This is incontrovertibly what the rule of law and order is squarely about.
Then also, Ghanaians did not go to the polls last December to vote for a government of national unity, but rather a government with a practically sound ideology and one that was composed of personnel thought by the electorate to be best able to facilitate the rapid and salutary development of the country. Putting political players with sharp and serious ideological differences in the same boat, or cabinet, to steer the affairs of our beloved nation would only result in exacerbating, as well as unnecessarily prolonging, both the socioeconomic and political problems of the country. We have already witnessed this in African countries like Kenya and Zimbabwe and therefore need not belabor the point.
What is more, forging a government of national unity also implies that democratic governance in the country has practically failed. The fact of the matter is that democracy is wide awake and alive in Ghana. What has happened, however, is the devious and dastardly attempt by a bunch of cynical reprobates to corrupt this globally proven most civilized and just mode of governance. We sincerely don’t need a government of national unity; what we need are swift and efficient methods of dealing frontally and definitively with any morally and politically depraved attempt to stall the progressive march of Ghana towards an enviable and well-deserved First-World status.
On August 29, 2013, when the Atuguba-presided Supreme Court panel of nine jurists hands down its decision on the petition against the political legitimacy of President John Dramani Mahama, Ghanaians and the rest of the democracy-loving global community would be much more interested in learning whether such decision had been squarely predicated on evidentiary-based justice, and not what kind of governance mode ought to be pursued during the course of the next three years. To be certain, based on how the Supreme Court decision goes, the presidential tenure calendar may have to be re-set. It shouldn’t be that the legitimately aggrieved party has to be made to gratuitously suffer for the flagrant misdeeds of the illegitimately, illegally and unconstitutionally favored party.
Needless to say, Ghanaians are far too sophisticated as a people to be taught how to work together through the morally and ideologically regressive vehicle of a unity government. You see, it is rather myopic to think that Ghanaian leaders ought to be pressured into forging an adhoc, or situationally convenient, mode of governance only to discard the latter three years down the pike, as it were, for the status-quo-ante. Real progress is not achieved by demoting a third grader to pre-K, only to have the same subject of demotion promoted back to third grade three years later, when the right grade level ought to have been sixth grade!
But it is Dr. Kwabena Adjei, the judge-threatening National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress who irks me the most. Speaking at the 21st anniversary celebration of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), the NDC scribe was widely reported to have observed that “the eight unique months of Election 2012 Presidential Petition at the Supreme Court, ought to be enough [time and experience] for parties to begin to work in pursuit of our national interest, and time enough to do away with the ‘winner takes all’ agenda” that presently defines the salient contours of Ghanaian democracy.
This is a quite refreshing thought, coming from Dr. Adjei whose Provisional National Democratic Congress (P/NDC) has been taking it all for most of the last three decades. The one significant problem here, though, is that Dr. Kwabena Adjei woefully lacks the requisite modicum of credibility to be taken seriously.
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Department of English
Nassau Community College of SUNY
Garden City, New York
August 22, 2013
E-mail: [email protected]