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Opinions Wed, 19 Dec 2018

Even in opposition, NDC Is showing its trademark incompetence!

Dispassionate look at the overall performances of the nation's largest opposition—NDC—specifically the ex-president Mahama's hijacked faction, shouldn't take rocket science know-how to figure out that the party is not only in a panic overdrive but also it gravely lacks the competence it takes to be a viable “government-in-waiting.”

Playing positive role as the leading opposition in the multiparty system, calls for political skills and profound understanding of the contemporary view of modal and substantive democratic governments. So far, it is obvious from many of their behaviors or pronouncements that the top echelon of the NDC today is bereft of creativity and savviness needed to be taken seriously as opposition group trying to win back power.

The question is: Does anyone blame the current leadership of the NDC for lack of serious, political awareness acumen that propels a determined opposition party to offer substantive and compelling policy alternatives under normal circumstances? Let us not forget the time-tested proverb that “leopard will still maintain its spots no matter how long it stays wet in the muddy stream.” Evidently, former president John Dramani Mahama and his acolytes have demonstrated time and time again, that even in opposition, the ghost of incompetence and the anything-goes politics unwaveringly follow them just like when the party was in power about two years ago.

Undoubtedly, JDM and his lackeys' time in the nation's political saddles saw corruption and mismanagement reached their apogee. It is an unfortunate reality almost every level-headed Ghanaian knows because they were living witnesses to the perennial energy crisis (dumsor-dumsor) and its negative aftershocks on the socioeconomic contours of the country. By the time Ghanaians kicked them out, the bulk of the then Mahama-led corruption-plagued NDC government's manifestos/promises were not half fulfilled after several years in power.

In view of all the litanies of incompetent track records, one expects that JDM-Asiedu Nketiah-Kofi Adam-Portuphy-Ayidoho band wagon would tone down their often incoherent rhetoric, and have sober reflections on their party's past misrule. In other words, the smart thing to do is to harvest reality backed by a dose of humility regarding their criticisms of the current government who is painstakingly cleaning up all the mess left behind. Instead, Ghanaians once again are witnessing incompetent opposition party whose stock-in-trade now involves the creation of groundbreaking propaganda superstructure under the guise of Communication Team.

Clear-thinking Ghanaians know the NDC communication team is run by some desperate, political upstarts and mediocre communicators whose specialties comprise spitting out mean-spirited insults at their opponents, engaging in propaganda/half-truths, playing politics of hyperbole, and stoking confusions among the vulnerable public so the truth will be the victim in the process.

If spreading misleading information, pursuing politics of mean-spiritedness or innuendoes are the modus operandi the country's largest opposition party's has adopted in an effort to come back to power, then the NDC has very steep mountain to climb in 2020. It should be drummed home to all the doubters that Ghana voters today are not political suckers neither are they “forgetful” as ex-president Mahama and many of his cheerers take Ghanaians to be. Regardless, in the upcoming 2020 elections, the large mass of Ghanaians will never forget the Free SHS and the fruitful impact it is having on the pocket books of the average citizens in the country.

Still more, it needs to be stated clearly that it takes effective combination of the majority of political party and all the minority parties' inputs to nurture multiparty culture, especially in the 21st century. In many ways, the success of democratic governance is not only about the government in power; rather, it is also predicated on the collective efforts, as well as constructive contributions, including selfless attitudes of the minority or the opposition parties. Suffice to say, the caliber of opposition role spearheading by the NDC is below average, in that the party has communication outpost whose members are more interested in venting needless lies, insults, and building personal careers than the supreme interest of the nation's democratic culture.

It's all good, though, as Americans would say. After all, ranting insultingly in public domain about government policies, whether based on facts or fictions, is one of the (un)flattering epilogues of the universal story of multiparty democracy. This is because the constitution strongly protects free press or citizens' rights to free speech. Yet, the troubling development here is if the major opposition party is failing to channel its critiques not on the procedural/modal as well as the substantive aspects of democracy, then it is the nation's fledgling democratic experiment that stands to suffer in the end. It is uncomfortable experience getting to know that even in the opposition, the dominant/vociferous JDM group within the NDC is so incompetent that they can't bring themselves to act right as Ghana's leading voice in the other side of the political aisle. Ghanaians deserve better than noise-making and disinformation peddling opposition with free access to some of the unfiltered media outlets in the country!

Bernard Asubonteng is a US-based sociopolitical commentator.
Columnist: Bernard Asubonteng