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Mills Must Be President, Not ‘Father For All’

Tue, 17 Aug 2010 Source: Darko, Desmond

By Desmond Darko

If President John Evans Atta Mills is to make real impact as president of Ghana, then he must remain PRESIDENT and reconsider his ‘policy’ of being ‘father for all.’ Otherwise, he may have performed, at the end of his term as the best president of Ghana, and the one who has solved the economic problems of the country. But the masses of the people of Ghana will not eulogize him for that. For his package to be complete, he must, as much as possible, do all in his power to sanitise our governance system. He can only do that if he amends his current position of being ‘father for all’ by concentrating more on being just PRESIDENT.

Let us not make a mistake! President Mills cannot be father to every Ghanaian, especially where the NPP is concerned. It is not for nothing that some parents, especially fathers, disown their children. Symbolically, the Danquah-Busia NPP politicians will never to accept President Mills as ‘father’ and so he must stop wasting precious time trying to be what he CANNOT be to them and concentrate on being PRESIDENT FOR ALL instead.

President Mills must ensure that the right things are done irrespective of who is involved. As a ‘father for all’ there is the tendency for him to sometimes try to please everybody and thus decide to treat his ‘children’ too leniently or even overlook wrongs done by them. This is not good enough.

Observably, President Mills comes across as someone who is strict on persons and issues relating to persons in the NDC and his government but is extra careful where NPP and its appendage groups are concerned. I have a huge problem with this.

I am getting tired of the consistent reactions plus lamentations of the NDC and its government about happenings within the country. Listening carefully to some prominent members of the NDC government complain about difficulties confronting them in the running of affairs of the state as regards the conduct of certain state institutions boggles my mind absolutely.

The NDC has been lamenting since it assumed power on January 7, 2009. The latest of these lamentations has been about what some of the party’s commentators claim to be an injustice against the people of Ghana by the court decision that, as it were, freed Kwadwo Mpiani and Dr Charles Wereko-Brobbey last Tuesday.

Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood is being constantly fingered to be the main brain behind the difficulties the Mills government is facing at the courts in its effort to bring to book persons alleged to be involved in acts against the state under the Kufuor regime.

Why? Are we saying that President Atta Mills lacks the political will to decisively deal with this matter once and for all? Or it is the case that the woman chief justice is being wrongly accused?

Due process must be followed in all that we do as a democratic country. But no one can convince me that if it is true that a chief justice is clearly showing political bias, in her conduct- which is not in doubt- against a ruling government, which conduct is constantly bringing embarrassment to the government, that government should just fold its arms and lament on-end? What is going on, for Christ’s sake?

Maybe, the Mills government is yet to fully come to terms with the reality that it has the mandate of the people of Ghana to manage the affairs of the state at this time and that is the reason why things are happening the way they are.

Yes it is a fact that President Mills has decided to demonstrate a different and unique style of governance, never experienced by the people of Ghana since the beginning of the 4th republic. Yes, President Mills has decided to show enormous magnanimity, through an open door policy, to the political opponents of the NDC. But to what end, looking at the way things are going?

One of the biggest internal criticisms (criticisms from within the NDC) against President Mills is that he has kept in sensitive positions in state institutions persons who owe unflinching loyalty to the NPP rather than to the state. If the allegation against Chief Justice Georgina Wood is anything to go by, then she is one of such persons.

The question then is, can the chief justice be removed from office by the government in power? If the chief justice cannot be removed, then what is President Mills going to do about the problem, that is if she truly poses a threat to the performance of the Mills government regarding uprooting corruption from public office by holding accountable former officials of the NPP government? Is the NDC government going to sit idly by and watch whilst its effort to root out corruption from the Ghanaian society is flagrantly impeded by the abuse of state authority vested in an individual who supposedly owes allegiance to an opposition political party?

The answer to this question can only lie in the bosom of President Mills at this moment. He is the President of Ghana and is supposed to know the true situation of affairs of the state. He is the only one who can decide on this matter based on the facts available to him.

Mrs Georgina Wood, it is believed was made chief justice by former President Kufuor and the NPP government as her reward for the part she played at the Georgina Wood Committee in the so-called missing 77 parcels of cocaine probe.

At the time many argued that the former NPP regime flouted the law in making her chief justice when she was not the most senior member of the bench at the time. So, can she be removed now to correct the wrong established by her supposed NPP friends?

It is true that to be able to unite the country, President Mills decided to tolerate the shenanigans of the NPP through his ‘father for all’ policy. But it appears by giving the Danquah-Busiaists an inch they have decided to take a yard.

As far as I am concerned, President Mills needs to take certain political decisions in order to sanitise the system. Today, many an NDC faithful is disillusioned. Supporters and sympathisers alike of the party continue to face open abuse from NPP members who beat their chest in the open and say that even though the NDC is in power, the NPP is ruling. With regards to job placements, NPP persons continue to have the bigger bite of the scarce cake because their people are still in charge of most of these things.

Yes NPP members are Ghanaians. But they are not the only people who are Ghanaians. NDC members, who suffered the treachery of Mr Kufuor and his NPP for 8 years, are Ghanaians too.

The President and his vice must not forget that NPP members did not ensure that the NDC got into power.

It is good to be ‘father for all,’ as President Mills is struggling to be, and allow NPP people to continue to hold sensitive positions. But the president has to be mindful of the fact that he was elected President first before his decision to be ‘father for all.’ Without the sacrifice of members and sympathisers of the NDC, there would have been no NDC government in place today. Let nobody underestimate that.

I rest my case for now.

Columnist: Darko, Desmond