Ghana: Who let the political dogs out to have a field day?

By IndepthAfrica
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Oct 2nd, 2012
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By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Certainly, Ghanaian politics is known for its “nonsense.” Those who don’t have the stomach for that nonsense shouldn’t participate in it lest they either choke on it or vomit out what their squeamish stomachs can’t contain. We know those who have been choked out of contention and those who have had to vomit what they ingested the wrong way.

Today, a new twist has been added to this spectacle. The NPP leadership have not only vomited but they have done the unusual act of returning to their vomit to swallow as the last resort for political survival. Disgusting, one might say—and rightly so too!!

After expending energy and resources shouting themselves hoarse on rooftops against the EC’s decision to add 45 more constituencies to the existing 230—and having used all the means at their disposal, issuing vain threats and mobilizing their lackeys in identifiable organizations to trumpet their anger and disdain for the EC and the government on that score—they have decided to stop puffing and huffing.

Now drained of all “legal and political energy” to persist in their misplaced rabble-rousing, they have no option but to turn attention to what one expected them to have done about two months ago when the EC first announced the creation of the 45 constituencies. They have now decided to return to their own vomit. They say they have decided to contest the parliamentary elections in the 45 constituencies. Look for political dogs and you will see them here!

Is it not ridiculous that the NPP leaders would waste nearly two months fighting a cause that had been destined to fail right from its inception? Most of us knew right from scratch that the NPP’s main arguments for resisting the EC’s moves were flawed and couldn’t win the day for them. We made it clear in our articles that the NPP was searching for a mirage; but weighed down by their own sense of self-importance and a misplaced trust in the judiciary to fight on their side, they persisted in pursuing this wrong cause—until now that by majority decision of 81to 56, Parliament has acted to give legal backing to the EC’s moves!

And like the proverbial Kwaku Ananse, the NPP leaders have now produced one of their well-known lines of argumentation to justify why they will now contest the parliamentary elections in the 45 constituencies.

The party’s national chairman, Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey, claims the NPP will not only contest elections in every “single” constituency but it is confident to win the majority of them. Now that the time for preparations has been unduly wasted by the NPP, whatever happens in its mobilization efforts should teach it the lesson that it had failed to learn all along in political organization.

To me, the NPP’s approach to this effort by the EC to exercise its constitutional mandate is not only reprehensible but it also smacks of the arrogance and narrow-mindedness that have made it difficult for some of us to relate to that political camp. To the NPP, anything that doesn’t either emanate from its quarters or inure to its fortunes must be resisted or torpedoed.

In this situation, its recourse to rabble-rousing and needless name-calling will definitely worsen its credibility problem. It seems the NPP doesn’t know how to sell itself and is using subterfuge as a ploy. How will voters in those new constituencies perceive it in this case?

And what will be the NPP’s message for those voters? That they had initially not been considered as worthy of a direct representation in Parliament but now do? Or that they will be compensated with special packages, including free education up to the tertiary level?

Trust the NPP to play to the gallery in its desperation to win public goodwill. Shameless opportunism will be at its best in these new constituencies.

Resisting the creation of these constituencies only to turn round to contest elections in them is the height of chicanery. Of course, what do we expect from this “Ma te me ho” clan that did all it could to resist the granting of independence to Ghana only to turn round to want to rule the country at all costs?

There is too much of the political dog behaviour on display by the NPP. And for as long as its members continue to see their vomit as the best means for survival in the stormy political waters,  they will come across as too desperate for Ghanaians’ liking. Such people may be looking for political power for purposes that won’t appeal to voters like me. Keeping them out of power will be the best option. When they are out of sight in the corridors of power, they will be out of mind. Good riddance, then!!

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