Should Akufo-Addo be prompted before acting?

Fri, 15 Jan 2016 Source: Bokor, Michael J. K.

By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Folks, when I read news reports that a group calling itself the Great Democrats had demanded that the NPP's Akufo-Addo must state his position on Ghana’s decision to host two Guantanamo Bay ex-convicts for two years, I laughed out loud and risked bursting my rib cage.

According to Ibrahim Yahaya, the convenor of the Great Democrats (whether an NDC affiliate or just an amorphous organization fronting for some faceless politicians), “As a matter of urgency, Nana Akufo-Addo should let Ghanaians know his position. By so doing, the people of Ghana would have the opportunity to determine what he would do if given the rein of this dear country.”

The group said Nana Akufo-Addo’s view on the matter is important since he served as Minister of Foreign Affairs and was once the Chairman of the UN Security Council. (See https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/Gitmo-ex-convicts-saga-Akufo-Addo-must-speak-Group-406423).

The question that immediately arose was: Should Akufo-Addo wait to be prompted before speaking out on matters of importance to Ghana? And in the case of this resettlement of such terrorists (whether cleared by the US or not) in Ghana is a dire one, which no up-and-doing politician will gloss over unless he doesn’t have what it takes to be a politician. The point is that merely parading the landscape as a politician won’t put such a person in power unless he adds value to himself as the grain to be separated from the chaff.

A politician with value is an astute politician who wakes up to reality and doesn’t slumber while important happenings demanding his attention happen. He doesn’t have to be woken up by anybody. He wakes up himself because he has what it takes to respond/or react to happenings of importance to his own political career that also affect positively or negatively the interests of the society that he seeks to lead. Being a politician for its own sake is next to madness.

A politician who cannot win voter support to be in power is a waste pipe to be discarded. He is deadwood to be trampled upon and prevented from fouling our air or polluting the minds of peace-loving people, if not ending up instigating them to subvert the very system nurturing them. An astute politician is quick to read between the lines and to act appropriately. Not so for Akufo-Addo, at least, from his own track record.

Akufo-Addo is not an astute politician; neither is Dr. Bawumia. They are more invested in rabble-rousing and cooking up statistics to promote their rogue politics than facing the reality teasing them to act responsibly. They are not politicians, even if they are doing politics!! A politician will be up-and-doing, taking advantage of happenings to offer constructive ideas so they can turn the table against their opponents. Not so for Akufo-Addo and his team. When reality beckons, they run away to look for lies and tall tales to augment their own figment of imagination. Only then do they come out to poison people's minds!!

The concession given by the Ghanaian government is a painful reality that a calculating and mentally acute politician will comment on to political advantage. Not so for Akufo-Addo. He is afraid of this reality instead.

As a matter of fact, Akufo-Addo's deafening silence on this important matter speaks volumes; but the only conclusion to be drawn is that he has nothing to offer. He hasn't been able to say anything because he has nothing to say.

His being a former Foreign Affairs Minister doesn't even assuage any doubt about his hollowness. What exactly did he accomplish in that office to warrant his being looked up to for anything substantial on the matter? He is incapable of offering any useful idea, which has made him choose silence as golden. But that choice carries a huge tag.

Knowing very well that the government goofed by conceding to the US' manipulation to settle the two Yemeni undesirables in Ghana, every reasonable Ghanaian has risen up to comment on the matter. Some notables in the NPP have also done so; but not their flagbearer and his running mate. Why so? Because they have nothing to offer.

It is clear that after the Electoral Commission has deflated them, they are worse than tail-less kites spiralling out of control to nowhere. In this state, what can they say? Better to slip out of the public sphere; not so? Tweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaa!!!

And these are people creating all kinds of impressions that they can solve Ghana's problems? Another resounding Tweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaa!!

Some may claim that he is being tactically in not taking on the US because he is wary of his future if he becomes Ghana’s President and needs the US’ support. I say another loud Tweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaa to that claim. Who says that he will come to power? Counting his eggs before they get hatched is a problem for him. In any case, who says that criticizing the US over this GITMO issue is any serious offence to be wary of? Only incompetent people will think that way. And Akufo-Addo is incompetent.

When he was Ghana's Foreign Affairs Minister, how much respect did the US accord him? Have we not read reports that he was even thoroughly searched at the JFK International Airport in New York on suspicion of carrying "wee" on him into the US? (Could be damaging rumours, though).

The truth is that for someone like him aspiring to be Ghana's President (May God pour ice-cold water on that aspiration!!), he needn't fear anything, especially if we consider how the deal with the US has angered Ghanaians. Outbursts from all sections of the citizenry tell me that Ghanaians aren't happy about how the deal was struck. So, why can't the leader of an opposition party step in?

We assume that the way he portrays himself as a shadow President should give him some bravado to say what he thinks about the deal. If he is already afraid of the repercussions of criticizing the US over this stinking deal, we are doomed should he become Ghana's President!!

I shall return…

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Columnist: Bokor, Michael J. K.