Politics of Tuesday, 4 July 2017
Founder of the National Democratic Congress, Jerry John Rawlings has succeeded in regaining the support of some kingpins of the party to further his grand scheme to keep the umbrella party in opposition for a long time, a leading member of the biggest opposition party has observed.
According to the NDC guru, though Mr Rawlings does not wish the party returns to power anytime soon, he has since the party’s defeat in the 2016 elections pretended to be working for its return to power.
“Unfortunately for us (NDC), some of the big shots in the party are buying into this pretence which is furthering Rawlings’ wish to keep our party in opposition. All the things that he has been saying about uniting the party and positioning it to win election are façade. Rawlings never wishes we return to power and he knows I know this,” the NDC heavyweight told The aL-hAJJ on condition of anonymity.
The one time Rawlings devotee said the former President is “someone who is very smart when it comes to politics… so if you don’t know how he operates you will think he is with you when indeed, and in fact, he is not. That is exactly what he is doing to the NDC. He is happy we lost the election and would wish we remain in opposition forever.”
“Those who have suddenly become Rawlings’ apostles and are warning people not to respond to him are just deluding themselves that the man is with us. Sadly, those doing these things were privy to the man’s schemes in the last election. I cannot fathom how they suddenly believe the man has changed and must be fully accepted into our fold to prepare for our return to power,” the NDC old guard who prides himself as a cadre noted.
Former President Rawlings has, since the defeat of the NDC, been busily finding ways to reclaim his once pivotal position in the party. Many have alleged that Mr Rawlings worked against the party ahead of the 2012 and 2016 elections in order to be able to get the party back on his laps when it is in opposition.
To confirm this observation, Mr Rawlings has since the beginning of the year launch scathing attack on former President John Mahama and National Executives of the party, calling for an overhaul of the party. He is also alleged to be backing some bigwigs to take up leadership positions in the party to further his plans to have a grip on the party.
He has maintained a cordial relationship with his once fiercest rivals, Akufo-Addo and his wife, Rebecca. At his 70th birthday recently, Mrs Akufo-Addo was seen with Mr Rawlings cutting the birthday cake.
Many have observed that the former President’s sudden amiable relationship with President Akufo-Addo is also a ploy to plead to the conscience of the president not to open investigations into some of his wife’s alleged shady deals.
While the former President has been persistent in his attacks on the party, some NDC stalwarts and members have also stood-up to him, pointing out the inconsistencies in his public outburst.
But National Organiser of the party, Kofi Adams, has warned communicators of the party from responding to the NDC founder or risk being sectioned.
Mr Adams, who himself has been at the receiving end of Mr Rawlings’ tantrums said the former President remained “a huge tower “and “the fountain of knowledge” in the party and urged the rank and file of the party to see him as a key factor in efforts to reorganise the party.
“I believe that those who have had verbal diarrhoea and gone on all kinds of attacks and talking anyhow (against Mr Rawlings); such persons will have to be advised to cease or will not have to speak on behalf of the party… we are not going to tolerate such things,” he said.
Kofi Adams explained that those who have attacked the party’s founder have done so out of ignorance, adding “many of them either don’t understand where we have come from or need to realize that sometimes you need to go back and ask yourself what exactly he (Mr Rawlings) is saying.”
“This is someone (Rawlings) who will stand by you any day and any time insofar as you are not offending the truth,” he said.
A deputy General Secretary of the party, Koku Anyidoho appears to be in support of Mr Adams’ admonishing as he has also in recent times jumped to the defence of Mr Rawlings whom he had in the past heavily criticised for badmouthing his mentor, the late President Mills.
Though Mr Anyidoho is also one of the National Executives Mr Rawlings wants removed, he described as reasonable a suggestion by the former President for the party to elect new leaders ahead of the 2020 election.
“To the extent that the party has to run fresh election it shall take place,” Koku Anyidoho said, adding; the process for the party’s branch, constitutional and national elections will begin in earnest,” he noted.
But the NDC kingpin said “those who have suddenly turncoat and are hero worshiping Rawlings today are doing the party no good. Rawlings never wished us well and he will never do it. I know him very well. Those singing his praise should continue and we will remain in opposition forever.”