The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has launched what political analysts term a blistering attack on Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, New Patriotic Party (NPP) vice presidential candidate.In recent times, Dr Bawumia has been the target of verbal attacks by the NDC chieftains, including President John Mahama and his vice president, Paa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, and others.
Over the weekend, the members of the governing party hurled insults at Dr Bawumia, an erudite economist, who has apparently become a thorn in the flesh of the party.
In Kumasi, Koku Anyidoho, a deputy General Secretary of the NDC, subjected Dr Bawumia to a barrage of verbal attacks.
The renowned economist, who has been vociferous in criticizing the Mahama-led government for the poor management of the country’s economy, was lambasted by Koku for suggesting that Ghana’s economy is on its knees.
Addressing party supporters during the Ashanti Regional campaign launch of the NDC, Koku Anyidoho accused Dr. Bawumia of being an apologist of deceit and vile propaganda.
Amidst cheers from the crowd and the party bigwigs, Anyidoho lampooned the learned economist cum banker, calling him names.
Former National Organizer of the NDC, Yaw Boateng Gyan, in an attempt to justify his (Gyan’s) inclusion in the umbrella family (NDC), described Nana Addo, flag bearer of the NPP, as a “golden ager pretending to be a youngster by drinking Kalyppo.”
Yaw Boateng Gyan posited, “Now that he (Nana Addo) has started drinking Kalyppo, he will soon be looking for breast milk to feed from, and added that it would be better for Nana Addo to bow out of the upcoming presidential race.
Ashanti Regional chairman of the NDC, Yaw Obimpeh, alleged that the NPP had sent 120 people to La Cote d’Ivoire to be trained as mercenaries to cause trouble in the December elections.
Johnson Asiedu Nketia, NDC General Secretary, over the weekend introduced a tribal element in the campaign of calumny against Dr Bawumia, saying that he was being used by the NPP to attract votes in the north and that he (Bawumia) would soon be dumped by the NPP.
“Bawumia is not a bad person but he is in a bad company. The NPP are not truthful to certain classes of people. They use people for their own benefits. And when it comes to a time to recognise the importance of the same people they have used, they ignore them,” he claimed.
According to Mr Nketia, people of northern extraction, including the late Vice President Aliu Mahama and Dr Bawumia, are seen as second-class citizens by the NPP and are only used for a purpose and then dumped.
Bawumia hits back
In a reaction to the attacks by the NDC gurus, Dr. Bawumia said the party’s bigwigs are pushing the tribal agenda because they have lost the policy debate.
The running mate to Nana Akufo-Addo pointed out that looking at the actions and policy decisions of the NDC government, there is no truth in their assertion that the party loves Northerners, but “what the NDC loves are their stomachs and pockets.”
The NPP vice presidential candidate, who was speaking Sunday at a mini-rally at Buipe in the Yapei-Kusawgu Constituency of the Northern Region, said that after losing the argument on the real issues that affect the livelihoods of people of the North, the NDC is now seeking to benefit from tribalism by claiming that it loves Northerners.
“The NDC has run out of the arguments; they cannot win the policy debate so they are resorting to tribalism. They want to divide this country. They say John Mahama is a Northerner, but what happened to the SADA money? Who chopped the SADA money? If they loved Northerners they wouldn’t have looted the SADA money.
“They say they love Northerners but they haven’t paid school feeding grants for our secondary schools in the north for two terms in a row; they say they love the Northerners but who chopped the GYEEDA money?” he questioned.
Dr. Bawumia also cited the cancellation of the teacher and nurse trainee allowances which he said had greatly helped people from the North to train as teachers and nurses.
The cancellation of the allowances has virtually ended the dreams of many thousands to pursue training in these important sectors, he said.
“Who has refused to pay the teacher trainee allowances which benefit Ghanaians, including Northerners? Who has refused to pay the nurse trainee allowances that benefit Ghanaians, including Northerners? They say they love Northerners; why have prices of fertilizers gone up so high? Our youth cannot find jobs and yet they say they love Northerners,” he stressed.
Continuing, Dr. Bawumia observed that the evidence only indicates that officials of the Mahama government only love their stomachs. Ghanaians are not going to vote on tribal basis but will vote for Nana Akufo-Addo who has demonstrated the necessary compassion, honesty and vision to secure the future of Ghanaians, he added.
“They only love their stomachs. The one who loves Northerners is Nana Akufo-Addo. We have to vote for a government of integrity, a government that has compassion, a government that has honesty and a government that has vision. We are not going to vote on tribal basis; we are going to vote for our future and that future rests with a government under Nana Akufo-Addo,” he reiterated.