General News of Monday, 23 February 2015
Source: Graphic Online
The leadership of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) must investigate the leaked “Osafo-Maafo tape” without delay and make public their findings.
“If the tape is true it will be a betrayal of the NPP and its members like myself who have mobilised non-Akan members for the party,” Dr Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, a founder member of the NPP, has stated.
He told the Daily Graphic in Accra yesterday that the NPP could have won the 2012 elections easily but for such tribal statements.
His comment comes on the back of a secret audiotape circulating on both social and traditional media which captures a male voice resembling that of former Finance Minister, Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, bemoaning the situation that even though about 90 per cent of Ghana’s natural resources concentrated in mainly Akan-speaking regions of the country, it is people who come from regions without resources that are governing the country.
The tape was apparently captured at a meeting between the former finance minister and the NPP’s Council of Elders in the Eastern region.
The voice, mostly speaking in the local Twi language, punctuated with some English, is heard bemoaning why Akan-speaking people, whose regions are rich with natural resources, are not the ones at the helm of managing those resources.
“We should protect ourselves; we should protect our income. No one who is the source of income, the source of revenue, the source of resources gives another person without those resources the chance [to rule over them].
In the estimation of the voice, “ 86.5 per cent of resources in Ghana come from five regions: Brong Ahafo, Ashanti, Eastern, Western and Central. This is where 86 per cent of the resources of Ghana come from… And the oil was also discovered in the West. It will change the formula to about 90 per cent. We cannot ignore these five regions; we should not,” the voice added.
But according to Dr Nyaho-Tamakloe, “the NPP stands for freedom and economic prosperity for all Ghanaians. We must not allow tribalism to define who we are.”
The NPP firebrand therefore insisted that the leadership of the NPP must be bold in taking a stand against ethnocentrism, even in the face of propaganda by the opponents of the NPP.
According to Dr Nyaho-Tamakloe, it will be unpatriotic for any other political group to attempt to make a political capital out of this issue, adding, “As a country we need to be united against ethnocentrism in our politics.”
Relatedly, a former flag-bearer aspirant of the party, Dr Kobina Arthur Kennedy, has also called on the party to distance itself from the alleged ethnocentric comments allegedly made by the former finance minister.
In media reactions, Mr Osafo Marfo expressed doubt about the authenticity of the tape.
He has therefore requested a copy of the said tape so he could listen to it thoroughly before making any comment.