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Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey is Off-Side on this One

Sun, 2 Jan 2011 Source: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame

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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

I read with a tad of disappointment, the allegation by the National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) that the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) has been secretly recruiting rambunctious foot-soldiers into the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) and other national security agencies (See “NDC Secretly Recruits Footsoldiers into Military – Jake” Citi-Fm 9/7/10).

The source of my chagrin emanates from the fact that Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey also claims that his bit of information – or rather hearsay – has yet to be confirmed by objective evidence. This is especially disturbing because it reduces the former Tourism minister to the level of such bottom-feeders of media slime as Attorney-General Betty Mould-Iddrisu and her legally challenged lieutenant, Mr.Ebo Barton-Oduro, Dr. Kwabena “Amedeka” Adjei, Messrs. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, Richard Quashigah and Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa.

Of course, the proper approach ought to have been for the NPP chairman to round up his party’s intelligence experts and set them to meticulously work on generating forensic evidence before going public with his allegation, as Deputy Information Minister James Agyenim-Boateng rightly pointed out. This, of course, is not in anyway to imply that the NDC could just not well be about the patently ungodly business of secretly and massively recruiting agents of mayhem into our nation’s security agencies with the predictable aim of stage-managing Election 2012.

Nonetheless, it is not too late for Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey to investigate what presently remains a mere allegation. And once he has fully satisfied himself with the fact that, indeed, the NDC is secretly and systematically about the business of illegal recruitment of foot-soldiers into our security agencies, prepare a comprehensive and responsive strategy, particularly should the Atta-Mills government show no productive interest in resolving this matter.

Already, as indicated in the recent by-election in the Atiwa Constituency of Akyem-Abuakwa, no longer are the sympathizers and supporters of the NPP going to sit duck while their swashbuckling NDC counterparts slaughtered their way into perennial political entrenchment. To be certain, as witnessed in the brutal mauling of Dr. Sammy Ohene at Abutia during Election 2008, the battleground ought to shift into the Volta Region, where the NDC has virtually succeeded in creating a no-go Mafia turf at the expense of the NPP.

While it is, indeed, quite heartening to hear Mr. Agyenim-Boateng, the deputy Information minister, wisely speak about the Atta-Mills administration’s intention of doggedly and progressively pursuing meaningful projects and initiatives began by the Kufuor government, the reality on the ground tells an almost wholly different story.

Recently, for instance, Ghanaians awoke to the at once bizarre and horrific story of the NDC being intent on unwisely frittering anticipated revenue from our oil resources in dodgy support of President Mills’ failed electioneering propaganda of unrealistically allowing policy holders of our National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to make a one-time premium payment towards the long-term sustenance of the same.

Curiously, as might be embarrassingly recalled, not too long ago, the same Atta-Mills government pre-committed a decade’s worth of Ghana’s oil revenue into a no-bid housing contract to a South Korean company called STX. In other words, what ought to more than trouble every well-meaning Ghanaian is not whether the Mills-Mahama government is intent on continuing productive projects initiated by the erstwhile Kufuor administration, but rather the means by which such programs are being pursued in the dubious name of continuity.

*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 a Governing Board Member of the Accra-based Danquah Institute (DI) and author of 21 books, including “Selected Political Writings” (Atumpan Publications/Lulu.com, 2008). E-mail: okoampaahoofe@optimum.net.

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Columnist: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame