Remembering Afrifa and Co. today… What for? (Part II)

Sat, 21 Jun 2014 Source: Bokor, Michael J. K.

By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The truth is that at every juncture in history, a country deserves the government it gets—and those who deserve to be dealt with are so treated under the very circumstances wrought by any change in government. Explaining circumstances of yore on the basis of contemporary political developments will be grossly inappropriate. We must not, therefore, judge the past on the basis of today’s happenings!!

Unfortunately, though, that is what those celebrating the lives of those military officers seem to be doing. Once they have the backing of their political backers (Did you not hear of those in the NPP who attended the church service?), they will insist on portraying the fate of those military officers as a national disaster and attempt forcing it down the throats of everybody. I won’t be surprised if they go ahead to institutionalize June 16 as another “Martyrs Day” in remembrance of those military officers. And trust the NPP to rope everything in for political currency. Wherever there is a carcass, the scavengers will surely obey the gravitational pull.

They have already institutionalized June 30 as a “Martyrs Day” in commemoration of the dastardly abduction and murder of three High Court judges and Major Sam Acquah. In all sincerity, this sordid act deserves the highest level of condemnation as uncalled-for and misplaced. But there is a deeper level aspect of the annual commemoration that rises to the fore for comment. It has to do with its politicization.

Apparently, the institutionalization was spearheaded and supported by opponents of Rawlings who would quickly establish themselves as members of the opposition NPP. They haven’t hidden their political persuasion or hatred for anything Rawlings, including the NDC. Thus, they have turned the commemorative event into an occasion for narrow political purposes, which largely detracts from its real substance. Once the event has been turned into a huge partisan political manouevre, it loses its national appeal, which is why any celebration of it is viewed with suspicion.

All the same, the real incident (abduction and murder of the judges and ex-military officer) remains a blot on our Ghanaian psyche. The issue attracts more cynicism because of how it continues to be portrayed. Although the Justice Crabbe Special Investigations Board did its work to expose those behind it (almost all of whom, except ex-Sgt. Amedeka, had been punished), the anti-Rawlings elements won’t accept the closure. They are bent on using it as a trump-card to undercut anything Rawlings—and spilling everything over to embroil the NDC!!

Curiously, when it suited them to snuggle close to Rawlings just before Election 2012 and exploit his “charisma” and stature, they had no pang of conscience to guide them. They smugly commiserated with him to create the impression that he supported their cause. But it didn’t fetch them any credit. Woefully disappointed, they are all over the place, looking for ways to exploit unwitting people and their emotions. They are doing so just to win political power and have sway over everybody in accessing the national coffers. Do we not already know them? It is the usual Ghanaian thing!

Until we in Ghana learn how to do things to serve purposes other than our narrow, parochial, and selfish interests, we will continue to run around in circles like tailless kites in the path of a whirlwind. And it will all be to our country’s disadvantage. Those in charge of affairs today should be advised to do what will not turn round to haunt them when their political sun sets; and those at the periphery shouting themselves hoarse to be given the mandate to rule had better learn the lessons of our history before they begin biting their fingers.

All said and done, those ex-military officers suffered the fate that their miscalculations wrought for them. No more!

I shall return…

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Columnist: Bokor, Michael J. K.