By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
The caption of the news article announcing her trouncing in the latest National Democratic Congress’ parliamentary primary was captioned “Akua Sena Dansua, Tourism Minister[,] Whipped at NDC Primary,” and it was posted on the website of Ghanaweb.com and dated August 20, 2012. I heaved a great sigh of relief; and it was for two events, actually three, that stood wistfully in my memory like a sore-thumb or an unusually hard piece of meat stuck in-between one’s teeth.
The first, of course, regarded the brutal beating of Ms. Dansua’s own sibling, the prominent New Patriotic Party (NPP) member and head psychiatrist at the country’s flagship academy, some four years ago at Abutia, a polling station in the same constituency in which the now-Tourism Minister won her third consecutive privilege to represent her people in our august National Assembly. By then, the dour-faced MP had apparently begun asserting what she deemed to be her bounden right and/or entitlement to represent her constituents. Dr. Sammy Ohene, brother of Ms. Elizabeth Ohene, former editor of the Daily Graphic, and Tertiary-Education Minister in the Kufuor administration, had met with the savage beating that would cause him to lose vision in one eye, because the latter had been rather too naïve to presume that the polling station officers of the Trokosi National Congress (otherwise known as the National Democratic Congress) were poised to playing fair and square with their political opponents in Election 2008.
Anyway, as I poignantly intimated back then and hereby do the same, once more, I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that Ms. Dansua had her buzzard’s fingers in the details of the brutal beating of her own sibling. You see, justice has a weird way of playing possum with those who deserve a sound rapping of her brass knuckles, and then descending mercilessly on the pates of her condign targets just when they were beginning to think they had safely and confidently traversed into the comfortable realm of virtual invincibility. And, of course, it is this deft and classical reprise of justice that makes Ms. Akua Sena Dansua’s recent political thrashing all the more delectable.
Well, the second event that stuck to my craw, as it were, like a George Foreman decking to the temple of one’s noggins, was when Ms. Dansua, as Minister of Women’s and Children’s Affairs, argued for a year’s reduction in the duration of the country’s public Senior High School system in order for our young women to quickly find husbands and begin producing babies like industrial baby-making machines. It was at once the dumbest and most cynical counsel to come from any key government official. What peeved me personally was the fact that the quality of the type of high school education afforded our daughters and granddaughters did not seem to matter the least bit to the then-Minister for Women’s and Children’s Affairs. And I did not hesitate, back then, to tell her what I thought about her reprobate brand of the human species.
I also knew, first-hand, that Akua Sena Dansua’s decision to deliberately downgrade our public secondary school curriculum was almost primarily based on the fact that her own daughter, fathered by an Adangbe man, if memory serves me correctly, had abruptly dropped out of the City College of New York of the City University of New York (CCNY of CUNY), my alma mater, after being impregnated by a sex-toy businessman from Accra resident right here in the Big Apple (of New York City). Well, I know this much for a fact, because Ms. Dansua’s daughter and I once shared the same Ghanaian physician, a general medical practitioner, right here in the Bronx. In sum, it was her quite understandable, albeit patently unjustifiable, maternal heartbreak and disappointment with the trajectory which her own daughter’s life appeared to have taken, that negatively instigated the former Women’s and Children’s Affairs Minister to so nefariously seek to influence the caliber and curricular duration of Ghana’s public Senior High School system.
Indeed, in the news article announcing her primary-election defeat, the reporter partly confirmed what I have always suspected to be the proverbial Achilles heels of Ms. Dansua, that is, her studiously cultivated vindictiveness, like the bulk of the NDC pack of ministerial rascals, thugs and hoodlums. The last straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back, however, occurred during the last Mills-Mahama cabinet reshuffle, during which Ms. Dansua was moved from the Sports Ministry to Tourism. Back then, this also-run of a lame ministerial pretext had the chutzpah to bitterly complain that being dispatched to the Tourism Ministry was tantamount to Coventry. In other words, no ministerial posting could be more punishing. You see, so faultily generous had the scam-ridden Mills-Mahama government treated this cognitively challenged NDC operative – you may call her Ghana’s Sarah Palin – that Ms. Pygmalion had shamelessly assumed the status of the celebrated Prof. Doolittle of Shavian literature. What was even more surprising, albeit predictably so, was the abject failure, or rather flat refusal, of Messrs. Mills and Mahama to show an insufferably snooty Akua Sena Dansua the exit. Or could it just well be that she was a back-alley bed-warmer for one of these gentlemen? I momentarily wondered back then.
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D., is Associate Professor of English, Journalism and Creative Writing at Nassau Community College of the State University of New York, Garden City. He is Director of The Sintim-Aboagye Center for Politics and Culture and author of “Ghanaian Politics Today” (Lulu.com, 2008). E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. ###
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