Mills, The Last Ewe King: Farewell “TRIBALISM”

Sat, 11 Aug 2012 Source: Mensema, Akadu N.

*By Akadu Ntiriwa Mensema, PhD

As we continue to mourn the shocking passing away of President John Atta Mills, we ought to rethink his presidency. We should grasp Mills’ failed presidency by

celebrating truth and speaking it to power so that we can learn lessons from that historic watershed of paradoxes. Indeed, we should have the courage, fearlessness, and non-partisan and non-“tribalist” leanings to revisit old questions and also ask new ones. This will enable us to address the problems, exemplified by the Mills regime, that imperil our emergent democratic polity.

The presidency of Mills was a seedbed of paradoxes. President Mills was a peaceful man and the so-named Asomdwehene, but never uttered a word against the violence and mayhem perpetrated by NDC foot-soldiers and operatives. He was a humble and genial man, but encircled himself with uncouth, arrogant, and hostile appointees. He was open and welcoming, but his presidency was distant, shrouded in secrecy. He was very ill, but did jog like a cunning lizard on the walls of the Osu slave Castle. And he was an upright and conscientious man, but surrendered himself with weathered political prostitutes and hardened pen-armed robbers.

We should, all ethnic groups, ask why all the officials around Mills were Ewes. This

ethnocentric policy should never occur again in the future. We should ask who

appointed all the Ewes who entombed Mills. I know that people like the benighted

“Terribly Specific” and “KOLA OF LONDON” would scream their usual clueless

one-liners of well the NPP did it! Here are four simplified answers to their

partisan question: (1) I was not writing when the NPP was in power; (2) the fact

that the NPP engaged in “tribalism” does not mean that we must recycle that policy

forever; (3) democracy is a dynamic process and it is only successful when we

recognize bad policies and don’t repeat them; (4) and I will hold the present Mahama

regime and future governments, no matter their political persuasion, to the same

standards of inclusion and excellence.

JJ Rawlings, who from the look of things in the aftermath of the death of Mills,

knew whatever happened in the Castle on daily basis, including the type of medicine

that Mills took at night, had blamed Kofi Awonoor, the seasoned “tribalist,” for

appointing Ewes to work with Mills. Rawlings used the rapist Stan Dogbe, who is one

of the thousands of Aides, as an example of Awonoor’s brainchild of cronyism and Ewe

hegemony. The sad thing is that Mills didn’t even know when and how such Ewes were

appointed to serve on his government. Remember Mills said that he had no knowledge

that Dogbe had been appointed to work with him.

Considering all the poisoning criticisms that Rawlings poured on Mills, never once

did Rawlings question why Mills’ Aides, Spokespersons, Drivers, Doctors, Cooks,

Deputies, Chief of Staff, Heads of Communication, etc. were all Ewes. The irony of

it all is that some of the Ewe appointees had never held major jobs in their life,

yet were planted in sensitive positions to work with and for Mills. This contributed

to the incompetency that characterized the Mills regime and which was capitalized

upon by Rawlings to demonize Mills as a Konongo Kaya. Never again shall we allow

this to happen! Next time, we shall use the courts and mass revolts to empower

benighted and marginalized Ghanaians.

Ghanaians should boldly speak to the “tribalistic” engineering that characterized

the Mills regime. We can only hope that President John Mahama has enough courage and

a sense of national duty to dismantle the Ewe hegemony carefully nursed under Mills,

not to forget the overwhelming presence of Fantes and “Northerners” in key

positions. In my considered opinion, stars of all our ethnic groups should brighten

the horizons of our government. Yes, I want to see Gas, Buems, Denkyiras, Nzemas,

Ahantas, Gomoas, Agonas, Akuapems, Akwamus, Bonos, Asantes, Akyems, Dwabens, Krobos,

Adas, Kwahus, Krakyes, all other Voltarian and “Northern” groups, and all

marginalized and disempowered groups carry Ghana to the heights of inclusive culture

of excellence. Please, add to the list of ethnic groups.

Yes, as we shall continue to mourn President Mills, the last Ewe King of the slave

Castle, where he was imprisoned to his death. Every Ghanaian, irrespective of

ethnicity and party affiliation, should say NEVER AGAIN shall we allow a few ethnic

groups, sadly the minorities, to dominate multiethnic Ghana. And NEVER AGAIN shall

we allow JJ Rawlings to pour Ridge-kerosene on any President of Ghana, and this will

be the subject of my next poem.

Prez Mills

Safe journey

Beyond the Volta

Your adopted home

Where you set your sun

Safe journey the last Ewe King

Safe journey beyond the Volta

Where you poised JJ’s Prophesy

The prophetic Adze Pa Wo Fie

Where you bore Adze Pa Wo Fie

Where you bore Ewe hegemony

On your weak back

On your weak shoulders

Ah! Ah! About these

JJ never screamed, foamed

JJ never insulted you

JJ never called you names

For being entombed by Ewes

Unseasoned Keta School Boys

Boys who lack salt of the earth

Boys who struggled ashore

Like fish gasping for political air

Boys who made you unpopular

You carried Ewe hegemony

On your weak shoulders

On your weak back

Ah! About these

JJ never spoke

Never called you KONONGO KAYA

Never called you ATTA MORTUARY

Mills, the last Ewe King

Your PRINCES below


Bid you farewell



1. Chairman of Council of State – Kofi Awonoor

2. Head of Government Business –Ewe

3. Dr. Kofi Wampah 1st Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana - Ewe

4. Another Deputy Governor of Bank of Ghana - Ewe

5. Mr Alex Segbefia Deputy Chief of Staff -Ewe

6. Head Of Military –Ewe

7. National Security Coordinator -Ewe

8. 2 of Deputy Finance Ministers-Ewes

9. Koku Anyidoho Head of Communication-Ewe

10. Chief of State Protocol -Ewe

11. Head of Civil Service -Ewe

12. Mrs Juliana Mensah Azumah Minister of Tourism -Ewe

13. Justice Amegshie DVLA Head-Ewe

14. Ms Akua Dansua Minister of Women & Children Affairs - Ewe

15. Head of Appointments Committee -Ewe

16. Chairman of P/NDC -Ewe

17. Castle Chief Cook- Ewe

18. Mr Joe Gidisu Minister of Roads & Highways –Ewe

19. Kofi Portophy, Head of NADMO - Ewe

20. Professor J. B. Aheto, Chair, National Media Commission - Ewe

21. Major General J. N. Adinkra is Chief of the Army Staff- Ewe

22. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Deputy Minister for Information –Ewe

23. Togbui Afede Asogli, Head of Castle Finance Committee- Ewe

24. Air-Vice Marshall Samson Oje, Air Force Commander, -Ewe

25. Stan Dogbe, Castle Aide

26. Mr. Ludwig Hlordze, Minister of State/Office of the President, Castle –Ewe

27. Mr Chris Kpodo, deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs – Ewe

28. Victor Gbeho, Chief Advisor to Atta Mills - Ewe

29. Madam Dzifa Aku Attivor, Deputy Minister of Transport – Ewe

30. Captain Beatrice Vormawor, New Head of Maritime Safety Division – Ewe

31. Brig Gen Wallace Gbedemah (rtd), Special Assistant to the President, -Ewe

**Add to the list for posterity

*Akadu Ntiriwa Mensema, Ph. D., is a nationalist Denkyira beauty. She is a trained

oral historian cum sociologist and Professor in the USA. She lives in Pennsylvania

with her great mentor and teaches Africa-area studies at a college in Maryland. In

her pastime, she writes what critics have called “populist hyperbolic, satirical”

poetry. She can be reached at akadumensema@yahoo.com My poems and essays on Ghanaweb

and elsewhere must not be reproduced in full or in part for any academic or

scholarly work without my written permission.Top of Form

Columnist: Mensema, Akadu N.