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Have Bawumia and Akufo-Addo Been Asking the Wrong Questions?

Mon, 23 Nov 2015 Source: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame

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

Garden City, New York

Oct. 10, 2015

E-mail: okoampaahoofe@optimum.net

So far, it appears as if only Dr. Abu Sakara, the 2012 presidential candidate of the rump-Convention People’s Party (r-CPP), is the only prominent Ghanaian politician who appreciates what I have been saying all along – which is that merely demanding that the Electoral Commissioner compile a new Voters’ Register would not solve the problems of multiple registration of voters, as well as the illegal and criminal packing of Ghana’s Voters’ Register with foreign nationals, such as was shockingly demonstrated by the 2016 New Patriotic Party’s Vice-Presidential Candidate, Alhaji Mahamudu Bawumia (See “EC Not Learning from Mistakes on Voters’ Register – Dr. Abu Sakara” Kasapafmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 10/6/15).

What has also puzzled me quite a bit is the apparent flat refusal of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) leaders to demand a full-scale criminal investigation into the contamination and corruption of our National Voters’ Register. Could it be because some party operatives belonging to the country’s main opposition party could be as criminally culpable as their counterparts among the front-benchers of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC)? So far, the most constructive and cost-effective approach to revamping the Voters’ Register appears to be what Dr. Sakara is demanding, which is the establishment of an “integrated database system that can be automated for deductions and corrections for subsequent elections.”

In other words, we need a self-auditing system of National Voters’ Register which can promptly identify and weed out instances of multiple voter registration. Such a system must, of course, be equally capable of weeding out the deliberate and criminal packing of the country’s Voters’ Register with non-Ghanaian nationals. Short of the preceding critical and radical changes, any attempt to merely compile a new Voters’ Register would be a financially wasteful exercise. I think I am beginning to like Dr. Sakara more than any of the other major players on the Ghanaian political landscape. My only problem is ideological and one that has to do with political party affiliation. If Dr. Sakara were to form a new liberalist-oriented democratic party, it would be the kind of viable political organization that I may be willing to unreservedly support, in the absence of Messrs. Akufo-Addo and Bawumia on the national political scene.

The other day, a good friend of mine reported to me that the notorious Idiot-of-Irmo, South Carolina (he just recently assumed the new accolade of the Cretin-of-California), was questioning Nana Akufo-Addo’s decision to pick the former Deputy-Governor of the Bank of Ghana as his three-time running-mate, when people like this shameless Treasure Hunter and his associates have been standing on line awaiting their turn to lead the New Patriotic Party into the Flagstaff House. My predictable response is the tired old Akan maxim which pointedly observes that when the future king was being born, or delivered by his mother, there were adult-male members in the royal family. In other words, just because one has been around from the founding, or establishment, of the New Patriotic Party does not automatically qualify one to be elected presidential candidate of the country’s largest party. That determination squarely depends on the party’s delegates and super-delegates; and so far, the Cretin-of-California has not been able to make a convincing presentation, or argument, to the movers and shakers of the New Patriotic Party.

But, perhaps, even more significant must be pointed out the fact that in any legitimately constituted modern democratic party, it is merit and proven leadership skills, not mere longevity, that qualifies one to lead both party and nation. We have just been informed that Mrs. Charlotte Kesson-Smith Osei and her staff at the Electoral Commission will play host to the leaders of the major political parties who will be making presentations to the EC, regarding the need for a new national Voters’ Register or otherwise. I, however, beg to differ with Dr. Sakara that time may have already run out regarding the ability of the Electoral Commission to put in place a new Voters’ Register, should that become the most compelling argument, in time for next year’s general election. Were this discussion being held some twenty-four hours before the December 2016 polls, I would still insist on there being enough time to put a new voters’ roll in place.

Columnist: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame