Opinions Wed, 29 May 2019

'Run for president if you feel fit enough' – Bawa counsels Manasseh Azure

Dear Manasseh,

Manasseh!Manasseh!!Manasseh!!!Growing up in the nostalgic hills of the Savannah, a certain admonition always rang true. From their cola stained teeth and lips dripping with fresh millet porridge, my aging uncles always sounded a caution-“there is wisdom in respecting grey hair”.

This caution, I believe also finds favor in the Christian Holy Bible. I called your name three times to prompt you to a series of unflattering statements you made in respect of our President H. E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo the veritable number 1 gentleman of our dear nation in your recent article “Show me your friend and I will….” In that piece, you stated “I saw you again in the news with your friend, the CEO of Zoomlion and Chairman of the Jospong Group of Companies, Joseph Siaw Agyepong”.

That statement, with all due respect, fails to reflect the known intelligence and respectful disposition writer’s adopt in their works. The question is who are you? For your young self, with such promise and goodwill, to pen down such paper markings about our President is a right load of coddswallop. I should think your father Mr. Awuni is no older than President Nana Addo.

I wonder if you could address him with the same condescension that you rained on the President!! Could you not have stated your grievances without resorting to offensive labels? Our people caution that the “wise man doesn’t raise his voice or use insult, he improves his argument”.

Therefore, to the man who does the opposite-we know who he is. My Brother,you are fast gaining notoriety as an agent of destruction tarnishing the reputations of those of us from the North by your largely baseless targeting of people. I hereby advice you to watch your language, pls.

Yes, you are popular but people made you who you are. When those who cheered you to “stardom” question your posturing these days, you should pay heed. The English tell us “pride comes before a fall” I do not wish that for you, but sometimes the grandstanding and unmasked nuance of arrogance you lace your pieces with leaves me curious.

I will not sound insulting lest readers will not make the difference between us the two writers. I am writing to tell you that you don’t set rules for our Presidents or leaders, you can only suggest to them.

However with you, each time you write with a swollen head as if you are an authority “bi”, whereas you are non the closer. Otherwise let’s just state it, if you feel suitable enough why not get your act ready and contest the 2020 General Elections as one who wants to do everything right at the Jubilee House and stop the perpetual hallucination?!

Again you said “I felt uneasy when you gave him another photo opportunity in relation to yet another very disturbing government contract your government awarded to him”. Who says it is only your friends, favorites and pastors such as the Pastor Mensah Otabils that the President should give opportunities to? As President he is not supposed to be vindictive and selective as you do in your writings so allow the president to do his work.

In reference to the Auditor General’s claims on Zoomlion of surcharges and disallowances, I am aware that the company is in court to annul the AG’s claims so you cannot use that as a yardstick to continue to lambast the company because your basis is not grounded enough by any court decision.

On your claims in that article on government stopping a bin contract with Zoomlion and its subsidiaries, that is also a naked lie. Why do you seek gratification and reward for efforts you haven’t put in?

Again, “Mr. President, the first time you visited Jospong Group of Companies and praised him, you came under wide condemnation” this your statement is untrue because it was only Manasseh Awuni whose folder got opened, you remember? Yes, you wrote to the President to be careful and distance himself from Jospong but in what capacity did you issue that warning? Are you one of the Presidential Advisors in Ghana?

“People close to your office told me some compromised persons misled you to his companies” you said in your article. In that statement too you meant to suggest in context that the President is not his own man if you care to know and that he cannot draw a line between good and bad which is insulting to our President to say the least.

You admitted that our drains are open and people throw all manner of things into it and sand and plastics fill the storm drains so rainwater is not able to flow through them which causes flooding in the national capital, especially the Odaw river/drain around the Kwame Nkrumah Circle area. Yet you think it was a bad decision to award contracts and spend money to clear the garbage from the drains. You then suggested that we stop the choking of the drains in the first place and apply common sense and a bit of integrity.

What I need to ask you is do you know the price of one Watermaster Machine, the equipment Dredge Masters uses to dredge the Odaw River? Or you think the excavators at the ministry can go into the water and dredge? Your suggestion that we stop the dredging and use the money for schools is a murderous thought because it will cause perennial flooding in Accra and many will die and properties lost.

An intelligent writer would have encouraged government to develop the Odaw River and Korle Lagoon into a national asset which through tourism would have earned the country some foreign income on daily basis which is already ongoing. So your advice should be for government to speed up the process, for all you know the project would include schools for the affected communities.

We cannot always use the fact that we are able to write to mislead the populace. Mr. Azure, building schools and allowing flooding to kill people is the most unintelligent decision a government would take because illiteracy is not a disease otherwise your father and mine would have died long time ago.

All intelligent works and lifesaving decisions therefore cannot be about brain surgery because somebody elses developed the equipment that the surgeon you so position honour to uses to conduct the brain surgery so not everybody can be a brain surgeon brother.

I will advise that next time you write with a clear brain and mind, not one which has been influenced and contaminated. Let’s give maximum respect to the sacrosanct seat of the Presidency if you think you can be better than the presidents we have been having in Ghana lately i.e (Nana Addo, John Mahama, Late Prof. Mills and John Kufuor) kindly put yourself up for election to be president so you can solve our problems the way you like it. For now, your thoughts remain opinions and do not gain automatic endorsement of the President.

The writer is and environmental sanitation enthusiast.
Columnist: asempanews.com