It is rather absurd for anybody to suppose that it is only the bloodthirsty leaders of the Rawlings-fangled National Democratic Congress (NDC) who have an inalienable right to appoint the chairpersons of the Electoral Commission (EC). By the way, have you ever wondered why we still have Indemnity Clauses shielding yesteryear’s murderers, assassins and thieves from justice?
To be certain, if factional political sabotage and infighting within the then-ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) had not wrecked the certain chance of Nana Akufo-Addo at the Presidency in 2008 and 2012, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, the least professionally qualified of the three personalities who have served as chairpersons of the EC, would not have lasted as long as he did.
Dr. Afari-Gyan is the least qualified person to have served as EC Chair because not only was the former University of Ghana’s Political Science Lecturer bereft of a law degree, the man also had absolutely no remarkable understanding of the law which, by the way, is the staple diet of all election boards and commissions throughout the civilized democratic world.
He would tell the William Atuguba-presided panel of Supreme Court jurists that he absolutely had no idea what constituted either “overvoting” or “under-voting.” Dr. Afari-Gyan would also criminally and deliberately permit ineligible underage Ghanaian citizens to register to vote. And when confronted with incontrovertible evidence by some leaders of the then-opposition NPP, Dr. Afari-Gyan would peevishly shrug his shoulders and reply that it was up to these registered underage voters themselves to either voluntarily promise to stay away from the polling booth on election day, or be persuaded to do the same. The fact that these underage minors had been criminally registered to vote did not seem to bother him the least bit, as long as he was receiving humongous payolas from the Mahama Posse behind closed doors; that was all that seemed to matter the most to him. And for the University of Ghana, Legon, and the University of California, Santa-Barbara-educated political scientist, all that mattered were the fat salaries and perks and allowances that came with his job description. For Dr. Afari-Gyan, democracy might just as well have been the cultural practice in Hell.
Now, I have made my peace with my dear sister Charlotte Kesson-Smith Osei, the immediate successor of Dr. Afari-Gyan at the EC, so I do not intend to rehash the long chain of chaotic events that led to my dear sister’s rather painful but quite logically understandable removal from the EC. It is, nevertheless, also quite certain that the sudden transfer of Mrs. Osei from her chairpersonship of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), a statutory coequal establishment as the EC, was effected by the extant President John Dramani Mahama in bad faith because in doing so, Mr. Mahama flagrantly tampered with the entrenched and inviolable constitutional integrity of both the EC and the NCCE. You see, if Mr. Mahama could so capriciously tamper with the statutory independence of both the chairpersons of the EC and the NCCE, then absolutely nothing stood in the way of the extant President’s decision to unduly influence the EC chairperson in his on favor.
Which was also precisely what Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia had insisted actually happened in the wake of the 2012 Presidential Election, when the dynastic General-Secretary of the then-ruling National Democratic Congress publicly stated to a radio-broadcast interviewer that the then-Interim President, Mr. John Dramani Mahama, had not actually won the 2012 Presidential Election, but that it was the scandalously abject lack of vigilance on the part of the Akufo-Addo representatives and assigns at the various polling stations and centers across the country that had readily and effectively ensured that a badly performing Interim-President Mahama would narrowly carry the vote.
Most studious observers of the 2012 Atuguba-presided panel of Supreme Court jurists that adjudicated the Akufo-Addo-led Presidential-Election Petition are also well aware of the fact that the verdicts delivered by some of the judges on the panel had been deliberately tampered with several times, even as convincingly attested by a Ford Foundation-funded Nigerian-born scholar who had studied and thoroughly researched the same. The appointment of the Atuguba relative and University of Ghana’s Law Faculty lecturer, Dr. Raymond Atuguba, presently Dean of the Legon Faculty of Law, as Mr. Mahama’s Presidential Executive-Secretary, shortly after the inexcusably shameful delivery of the Supreme Court’s decision in favor of the former Atta-Mills’ arch-lieutenant, was not lost on most intelligent and well-educated Ghanaian citizens. This column is in response to a previous article written and published by one Mr. Abdul Razak Bawa and titled “Is Nature Working Against Akufo-Addo and the NPP?” (Ghanaweb.com 4/9/20).
Indeed, he may very well have a difficult time in accepting the stark fact of the practical reality that the eruption of the Coronavirus Pandemic may very well be a veritable act of Nature/Divine Providence – my profound apologies to Candidate John Dramani Mahama – that may be aimed at bringing out the best of the genius leadership of President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, as a means of permanently and effectively ensuring that Ghanaians are never again accursed with the total “Dumsor-nomical” Blackout that was the Coronavirus-like industry-stalling of the four-and-half-year drawn-out tenure of the Mahama/Amissah-Arthur-led “Chemical Ali-like” regime of the National Democratic Congress.
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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York