The Okyeman Caucus of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has rendered unqualified apology over unsavoury comments from one of their members against the Okyenhene, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panin.
The Ashanti Regional Secretary of the NDC, Kwame Zu is said to have, September 19, suggested that but for former president John Dramani Mahama, the Okyenhene would still be “drinking water with animals”; a statement that has not been taken lightly by OforiPaninfie, the traditional seat of government of the Akyem Abuakwa people.
The comments attracted anger from the people of Kyebi who took to the streets Monday, September 23, to demand an apology from Mr. Zu and the NDC.
Mr. Zu subsequently apologized, expressing deep regret and describing the move as unfortunate.
“The said statement was used in good faith and figuratively to underscore that the Okyenhene did not drink different water from his subjects, again flowing from the love he has for his people. After deeply reflecting over the said statement and the interpretation given it by a section of the public, which interpretation is plausible, I wholeheartedly regret making that statement."
"I hereby wish to unreservedly render an unqualified apology to the Okyenhene, Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin, the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council and indeed all Ghanaians for the said statement. I revere and have always revered the chieftaincy institution in Ghana and for that matter hold the Okyenhene in high esteem and would not deliberately undermine the chiefly powers of the Okyenhene who has shown great leadership over the years.” He said.
The NDC was however given a 3-day ultimatum by the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council, to come out with an official apology on the back of the subject.
In a release dated 25th September 2019 and signed by the coordinator, Ambassador Victor Smith, the party disassociated itself from the comments from Mr. Zu, with the explanation that they were not made in his capacity as an NDC General Secretary in the Region.
They also apologized for the act by their own and asked that the council tempers justice with mercy and accept Mr. Zu’s unqualified apology.
“With a heavy heart, we the leadership of the Caucus wish to express our sadness about the unfortunate and regrettable pronouncements of one of our political party members during a recent demonstration in Kumasi.
We would like to plead with the Nananom to temper justice with mercy and accept his unqualified apology.”, they added.
Read the full statement below: