By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
April 10, 2015
I don't remember whose ministerial second-bananas he is. I suppose it is the Minister for Trade and Industry or some such cabinet portfolio. Not that it matters, anyhow. What matters is the fact that the couple, or so, times that I have had to carp his actions, Mr. Murtala Mohammed has come off to me as one who does not belong in our august House of Parliament, let alone be named a deputy cabinet appointee. Then again, who said the Mahama cabinet was composed of any remarkable number of thinkers. At least Mr. Mohammed is honest enough to publicly admit that most of his peers and associates are people with "filthy, ill-gotten money" (See "MPs 'Bribe' Tamale Chiefs, Malams With Filthy Money - Angry Murtala" MyJoyOnline.com / Ghanaweb.com 4/10/15).
I suppose this also includes the man who appointed Mr. Mohammed as a member of his cabinet. And this may well explain why the Nantong NDC-Member of Parliament has, reportedly, been summoned by President John Dramani Mahama to explain himself. Indeed, as of this writing, there were vehement calls for the President to summarily expel the former rump-Convention People's Party (r-CPP) operative from his cabinet. I have always suspected Mr. Mohammed to be a smooth-operating opportunist. His northern ethnicity may well have commended him into the good graces of Northern Ghana's Greatest Hope Yet; at least that is how Mr. GYEEDA and SADA and SUBAH wants to be perceived. His cabinet second-bananas' latest contretemps is perfectly in character, and it serves the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) right, especially now that one of its own shark-toothed bull-dogs has rather belatedly arrived at the obvious conclusion that, indeed, the worst enemies of Mr. Mohammed are within the ranks of his own party and among his tribesmen.
From now on, if he is genuinely possessed of a good conscience, Mr. Mohammed ought to find it extremely difficult to point his index finger at anybody outside the membership of the Rawlings Posse. I am particularly fascinated by the Nantong MP's assertion that the overwhelming majority of his internal detractors are people with "filthy, ill-gotten money." We heard it from the horse's own mouth, proverbially speaking, and so from now on when Mr. Alfred Agbesi Woyome's clansmen are tagged as pathological thieves and robber-barons, let no one cry foul or resort to the jaded rhetoric of equalization. You are either a certified thief of the taxpayer's money or you are not. Merely shooting back that your accuser also once dipped his fingers into the public till when nobody was watching will not wash.
I am also intrigued by Mr. Mohammed's quite virulent accusation of his unnamed detractors as "un-Islamic," because I tend not to perceive Ghanaian politics - at least the Fourth-Republican brand of Ghanaian politics - in such religious shades as Islam and Christianity. The man also says that "I am not corrupt. I have said it time and again." But the rest of us know very well that this is a damn lie, because one cannot keep company with people possessed of "filthy" and "ill-gotten money" and not become one oneself." You may call him an angry man, but you cannot convincingly dispute the fact that the evidently besieged Nantong NDC-MP just told us what many of us have perennially suspected and even known for a fact, notwithstanding our inability to have readily come up with forensically sustainable facts and figures to back up our suspicions and common knowledge had we been challenged.
I suppose it was Mr. Maxwell Kofi Jumah who recently observed that rank and riotous internal wrangling and back-biting were not unique or peculiar to the key operatives of Ghana's main opposition New Patriotic Party. The former Kumasi-Asokwa NPP-MP also added that what laudably distinguished the key NDC operatives from their NPP counterparts was the fact that the NDC Abongo Boys were enviably tutored in the tried and tested ways of Cosa Nostra, in Italo-Sicilian Mafiaspeak, that is. I love Senior Brother Kofi Jumah. But guess what? Mayor Jumah was butt-naked wrong! Just ask Murtala.