Date Published: 05/09/10
The bane of Alan is Nana’s virtue. By Daniel Danquay Damptey
Successful men keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit. My love for the New Patriotic Party knows no bounds. I eat and drink everything NPP. In short, I virtually swim in it. And so I decided to adopt a “Sidon look” posture as propounded by the late Cicero of Eso Eke, Chief Bola Muyiwa Ige until after the flag-bearer of the NPP has been chosen.
But I have been compelled to come out of my shell by prevailing circumstances to re-invigorate the support base of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo- Addo. Le it be stated that in doing so, I owe nobody ant apology and that I do so with a clear conscience and without bitterness.
Nana – a gem of a politician : There is one very important quality in Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo which is very rare in most politicians. And this has to do with his integrity. On this, I will put my life on the line and vouch for him just as Kwame Pianin, the turn-coat of a politician did for President Mills. My stance is based on my conviction that Nana is the best thing ever to happen on the political terrain in the country at the moment. Nana is a man who speaks his mind without minding whose ox is being gored, once he becomes convinced that what he is doing is right. He will look straight in the eye and tell you what he feels about you or an issue. And it is such forthrightness that people have construed as arrogance.
At the same time, Nana is a rare breed of a politician who can dribble a little bit to the right and a little to the left before delivering the coup de grace. Do you recall what happened when the National Reconciliation Bill was being discussed in Parliament and the then Opposition NDC minority decided to stage a walk-out on account of an innocuous remarks Nana had made in the House which the minority regarded as offensive? What did Nana do? He stated it and it is captured in the Hansard of that day that since the Bill was his baby, he would not like to be an obstacle to its passage and so if others felt offended by his remarks, he was withdrawing the comments. He did so with an apology. Does this in Nana reveal any trait of arrogance? His car has been seized and kept on the orders of the NDC Government for nearly fourteen months without any justification, but the man has not made any noise about it. Does this not debunk the erroneous impression created by his political enemies that the man exhibits traits of “patapaasem”,” akakabensem” and “ atuturasem”?
Did Alan resign from the Party? Now, come to think about Nana’s main contender, Allan Kyerematen. It is no secret that Allan indeed did resign from the New Patriotic Party before being prevailed upon to rescind his decision. The issue of his resignation gained currency and no stranger in Jerusalem is ever going to convince me that the Great Alan did not resign from our Great Party.
But what do we hear from the Great Allan himself? That he did not resign from the NPP? That because the then Chairman did not accept his letter, it means he did not resign? But did he submit letter of resignation to the Chairman of the party? Someone will say we should let sleeping dogs lie. Yes, we should, but I take strong exception to Alan’s contention that he did not resign from the NPP. He did and must be have the courage to tell us that indeed, he did. And that personal admission would have made some of us love him the more. And his failure to admit that fact is one great trait that separates him from Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
A leader must bold to face the consequence of his/her actions/utterances: Fear is a trait of weakness while boldness is a mark of virtue. In other words, show me a man of living in fear and I will show you a weak person. And show me a virtuous man and I will show you a bold man. When Nana says “yes” he means exactly “yes” and when he says “no”, he means that. He is not afraid to admit his mistakes. This is so because he realizes that he is human and is therefore bound to make mistakes.
I laughed myself to sleep when I read that, the Great Alan, in his interaction with party men and women in the Greater Accra Region stated that has amply demonstrated his commitment towards peace and stability within the party by citing for example his decision to step down for his main opponent, Nana Akufo – Addo during the 2007 Congress.
The truth of the matter: Once more, I take a strong exception to such a view, for nothing like that ever happened. The truth of the matter is that at the end of the first round of voting, almost all the other contestants had gone to pledge their support to Nana Akufo-Addo and a run of between Nana and Alan would have been a mere formality for endorsing Nana. It was the prospect of avoiding a much more humiliating defeat during such a run-off that let Alan to take such step. This is the truth and nothing can be further from than. Nevertheless, I doff my hat to him for that deft move which saved him from a humiliating defeat.
Politics without bitterness: At the Ministry of Education, Nana did something which was unprecedented in the political history of the country. He knew that the current Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Mrs. Betty Mould Iddrissu did not share the same political ideology with him. But, unlike what the NDC is doing today, Nana maintained a hearty and cordial working relationship with her and even gave her a very good recommendation when she applied for an international position. Politics without bitterness, one might say. This is a leader worthy of emulation. Just like President Obama! Who can beat him? Not Alan!
The Human Rights issue: When Alan made mention of Human Rights, I knew then and there that he was taking a swipe at Nana. But even here, he failed miserably. Which person aspiring to become President of this country will not be interested in ensuring that the personal liberties of the citizens are not protected? Does Alan want to tell us that he will look the other way while the citizens are for example, being subjected to arbitrary arrest and imprisonment without trial?
The sacking of Sallah and others (Apollo 568): When the late Prime Minister Busia sacked the 568 or so workers, referred to as Apollo 568, it became a national issue and the late I.K.Acheampong used it as one of the reasons for overthrowing the regime. The late President Dr Kwame Nkrumah had a very bad human rights records and the NLC at that time used it to justify his overthrow. When the NLC put Moses Boye in a cage and paraded him through some principal streets of Accra, it became an issue of great concern to Ghanaians and a dent in the human right records of the Government. When the Limann Government used state security apparatus to trail ex-President Rawlings and Kojo Tsikata, the two petitioned the Council of State. Our party, the Great Osono Party has used the bad human rights records of the PNDC (including the “eye hann”, “eye kanea” slogan to campaign against the NDC. So what is Alan talking about?
What Alan wants to tell us is that if the Mills administration goes about sacking non-NDC members from their jobs without any justification, he will regard it as a non-issue. What Alan is telling Ghanaians is that if he is elected President of this great country human rights issues will not be part of his agenda, for he will look the other way if individual Ghanaians are arrested and incarcerated arbitrary. He will keep mute on the issue. But here is one issue that Nana is at his best elements. He has been at the vanguard of those who have been fighting for the restoration of individual liberty and against oppressive and dictatorial rule. The records are there for all to see. Compare Nana’s human rights records with that of Alan and ……
There is no Asante-Akyem Divide in the NPP : On the unity of the party, let me state here for the avoidance of that that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is a unifier for he has not, and will not do anything to rock our forward marching campaign. There is nothing like Akyem-Ashanti division in the NPP. The so-called conflict between the two tribes is the figment of Ben Ephson’s imagination and mischief makers have capitalized on it to make it appear as if there is actually a struggle for superiority of one tribe over the other. Nana support base cuts across all tribes. He is aware that Ashanti Region gives the party the largest vote. So, how can he insult Ashantis as is being alleged by mischief makers?
Compare how the two, Nana and Allan reacted in the face of alleged harassment of their supporters after the election of our Presidential Candidates at different times. While Nana informed the National Executives about the perceived harassment of his supporters by the winner, Alan decided to take the easiest way out. He resigned from the party and the national executives had to dive into the archives before they got the trump card which they used to get Alan to rescind his decision.
Expansion of the Electoral College : I feel it is pertinent at this juncture to state that Nana personally spearheaded the crusade to expand the electoral college of the party so that ordinary members could claim to be part of the king-makers or selective process of our Presidential Candidate. Isn’t it an irony that those who were opposed to the expansion are now calling on those they did not want to be part of the decision-making process to vote for them? We know where each of the contestants stood on the above issue.
Vision for children: Nana realizes that children are the future leaders of Ghana and so part of his vision for them will be to expose and make them learn early the ingredients of nationalism, pride and allegiance to Ghana. He realizes that right now we do not seem to have a Ghanaian, only individuals except of course when it comes to soccer. Our children must learn and understand their country and their rights and responsibilities to their dear motherland. They will be regularly sensitized to happenings around them
A passionate appeal to delegates: Dear delegates, do not forget that Nana championed the cause to make you “king-makers” in the party. What do you have to do to thank him for this singular honour done you? Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is not asking much from you. All he is asking for is to empower him with your vote and see what he has in stock for you. He has done it before and given another opportunity, he will do it again.
Nana is a brand name: Do not forget that Nana has been marketed before and has become a household name in the country. For a first timer, I should say he did extremely very well. He lost the Presidential elections by less than one percent. It is my belief that if we embark on an aggressive campaign strategies targeted at the youths, many of whom do not have any visible means of livelihood as a result of lack of employment opportunities and the floating voters, the tide will tilt in his favour, come Election 2012.This is in sharp contrast to my good friend and fellow “kukrudite”, Alan Kyerematen, who has never won any elective position before. I mean no mischief here, but I speak the facts as they are.
Last, but not the least, we should not overlook the fact that the New Patriotic Party is a party that rewards its members for hard work and excellence. Nana Addo Dank7a Akufo-Addo has, since the inception of the party contributed a lot, both in cash and in kind to make the party what it is today. This is an uncontestable fact which every trUe and patriotic member of the New Patriotic Pardy will admit. Which betuer way do we have to honour this man great man of vision who is committed to the hdeals of the Danquah-Busia-Dombo tradition?
Conclusion: With Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as flag-bearer of the New Patriotic Party, a new page will be written in the life of every member of the party. Members will not be afraid of where we are going, for he offers members and Ghanaians a life of dedicated service. With Nana as our flag-bearer, a new page will be written in the life of every party man and women. It will be a page of hope, expectations and success.
Give Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo your vote and you would have performed your patriotic duty to your party and your country. But, while doing that, you must have it at the back of your mind that quitters do not win. I have spoken!
Daniel Danquah Damptey (danieldanquah_damptey@yahoo. com)