By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
July 10, 2015
You see, the problem with Ghanaian politics is that most cabinet appointees, particularly from the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), have absolutely no inkling about the fact that once one is inducted into ministerial status, the one so inducted transitions from a party stalwart to a statesman or stateswoman, for that matter. I shall tackle the Woyongo national contretemps more fully in the offing. For now, though, I merely intend to agreeably comment on Dr. Richard Amoako-Baah's quite well-informed observation that no one ought to expect a pathologically adamant President John Dramani Mahama to fire his state-side pointman anytime soon (See "Woyongo Is A Danger To The State - Dr. Baah" Kasapafmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 7/10/15).
Mr. Mark Woyongo, the Interior Minister, is alleged to have told the host of a Kumasi-based radio program that the NDC-sponsored vigilante militia group, the Azorka Boys, visited barbaric mayhem on voters and supporters of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) during the July 7 Talensi by-election, because the Azorka Boys had been provoked by members of a coordinate group called the Bolga Bull Boys, alleged to be aligned with the New Patriotic Party. What makes the Interior Minister's remarks inexcusably disturbing and objectionable is the fact that such comments clearly seeks to seriously undermine the functional legitimacy of the coercive apparatus - or the constitutionally recognized and authorized security establishment - of the state. It also invidiously seeks to justify the gratuitous application of violence by non-state-sanctioned vigilante entities. This is very dangerous!
Moreso because Mr. Woyongo does not provide any forensically sustainable proof that, indeed, it was the NPP-aligned Bolga Bull Dogs that initiated the patently intolerable acts of violence at Talensi. Indeed, an emotionally and psychologically poised, or mature, leader would first have called for a thorough investigation of the incident before presuming to draw the relevant and most appropriate conclusions. Instead, we have the former Upper-East Regional Minister blindly backing the NDC-sponsored Azorka Boys.
Under these Social-Darwinian circumstances, about all one can say is that the Akufo-Addo-led New Patriotic Party ought to start seriously thinking about the imperative need of setting up a state-of-the-art counter-terrorist paramilitary organization with the single-minded objective of battling it out with the state-sponsored Azorka terrorist posse in the lead-up to Election 2016, if the three-time Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party and his parliamentary pointmen and women are to assure themselves of a fighting chance.
Even more poignantly, the attitude of the Interior Minister affords Ghanaians a deep aperture into why the Upper-East Region remains, to-date, the country's most volatile and politically regressive region. Even the lead-architect of "revolutionary" violence in postcolonial Ghana, Chairman Jerry John Rawlings, has called for the immediate arrest and vigorous prosecution of all elements forensically proven to have been involved in the wanton expression of hostilities at Talensi. One is also keen to hear what the founding-father of the National Democratic Congress has to say about the Woyongo faux-pas.
Unlike Dr. Amoako-Baah, Head of the Political Science Department at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), however, I do not subscribe to the lamely urbane and all-too-diplomatic notion that "Mr. Woyongo's comments are [merely] in bad taste," and also that the former Defense Minister "is [only] a danger to the whole country." Personally, I believe that of all the Mahama cabinet appointees, it is Mr. Woyongo who best represents the President. Truth be told: The National Democratic Congress was created out of the wanton and gratuitous spillage of human blood, violence and sustained acts of intimidation and cannot be expected to healthily transition into a civilized and/or polished democratic political machine anytime soon, or ever.
The National Democratic Congress has to be forced to conform to the civilized tenets of constitutional democracy by the leaders of the main opposition New Patriotic Party and the other so-called minority parties, through a multifaceted concatenation of judicial activism and grassroots armed struggle. For increasingly, peace- and freedom-loving Ghanaians are being made painfully aware of the fact that the National Democratic Congress and its key operatives far prefer to be envisaged as a veritable occupying force than a modern democratic party.