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Akatamanso Over Rotten Planks. Critical News, 2nd September 2012

Posted by Business in Ghana on September 2, 2012

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

I breezed past Mantse Agbonaa last week for the NPP rally.  It was jammed, and as usual the uncouth motorbike gangs were riding rough and claiming street ownership, no rules, no regulations, scared policemen, watching from a distance.  I got into a minor scuffle with a group of them bursting through the windows of a car, hazards and lights on, with horns blaring as if there was an ambulance call.  I refused to pull to the side of the road and that started the scuffle.  I was lucky that afternoon.  My gray hair was in full bloom, no haircut for 3 weeks.  End of story, some sensible official bystander pulled me away and calmed them down.  It left me thinking this election violence is the real deal.  I am going to find a driver/bodyguard.  These gangs are spiraling out of control and becoming a problem for the MTTU.

Follow up story.  Mr. Godfrey Dame, filed an interlocutory injunction on behalf of his client, Mr. Ransford France to stall Parliament from sitting on CI73, which could bring in the 45 new districts the NDC Government says will enhance our democracy by leaps, once created.  Totally illogical, but determinedly persued by the NDC in Parliament.  There is another pending case before the Supreme Court, to look at a related case, LI1983, I mentioned a couple weeks ago.  I am not sure what is going on, but Cletus Avoka is in a fight of some sort to declare Parliament supreme above all else.  I beg to defer on this case till it is clearer.  Parliament has been recalled from Monday, 3rd September and we wait to see if Mr. Dame and his client will derail “District Four Five”.

You can get a copy of the NPP manifesto from their website here.  I am still working my way through the document but I am finding it a bit difficult.  There is so much incorrect grammar and poor sentence construction.  There is some good stuff no doubt, but I am grappling with the corner pillar of the campaign, the free SHS school package.  I am not sure how it will be managed financially and logistically.  I have an idea of how I think it can be done, but it is early days yet and I am waiting for the NDC manifesto to see what they have before I release my idea.  You have to be careful these days, Paa Kwesi Ndoum is looking for anyone stealing his ideas and he waded into the NPP this week, claiming he owned the free schools idea.

The Constitutional Review Commission is also ready with its report on its website.  It is a hefty 9.57Mb so download with caution, it could use up all your data minutes in one go.

Last week, we floated a 23% 5-year bond and reaped $683million more than we needed.  We went to market for $300million and accepted three times as much.  The Minister of Finance was celebratory, but not him alone.  Some persons just got them a sweet deal at 23% a year, when interest rates worldwide are at their lowest ever, some as low as .05%.

JJs boom box has always been the dominant front-page space when he craves it most and we gave him major media real estate this week (read his speech here).  He did as he usually does, lots of metaphor, no names mentioned, manufacturing chaos.  That the media fell for it, played into his hands just as President Mahama must have done to get him to Kumasi for his endorsement.  I heard a rumor earlier in the week that the President had been to see JJ and left a meeting from his home at close to midnight.  I chose to ignore that rumor for very good reasons.  Why would JJ take all the insults and nonsense jibes from the NDC executive and stoop so low and turn back to the flock where he was once king and lead barking dog and exiled?.  It did not make any sense then.  However, I had privately mentioned to a few confidants that JJ was capable of jumping back into the fray for his own selfish reasons.  While we all focused on the “baby teeth” and “rotten plank” allegories, we might have missed the subtle power flex at the beginning when he said he had ordered for and been granted a request for street lights to be installed in an unnamed village some place in Ghana where murders are rampant.  Clearly he had asked Mahama to do this as a pre-condition for him to be at Congress and this had been met, hence he showed up at Baba Yara stadium to congratulate the President.  When he is back, this is how projects will be carried out.  Where JJ thinks they need to be placed (AFRC revisited).

I think Mahama made his first big mistake this week.  It would be better to campaign on his merit and resources and not win, than to kowtow to JJ in order to give the NDC a fighting chance.  A chance far from certain.  JJ comes with a lot of baggage most of it wrapped in Konadu clothing and a history of violence.

That JJ appeals to the masses is not up for discussion.  But to solicit his (JJs) campaign prowess at this time clearly indicates how vulnerable John Mahama feels.  Right at his doorstep, General Mosquito cannot be happy, neither can most of the small babies with sharp teeth and the rotten planks on the bridge.  We are still making lists of these two groups even before we have finalized the “greedy bastards” list.  They have now transmogrified into aircon-riding opportunistic persons waiting in the wings for victory to beckon.  I actually thought Paa Kwesi Amissah would be one such, but I hear he does a lot of work quietly in the air-conditioned background.

But seriously, JJ should we over fifty-fives believe this probity, accountability and transparency foundation stone of the NDC you have been pushing at us for decades?  There is nothing of value from the AFRC era, which was a mutiny and treasonous putsch.  The 31st December coup, overthrew a constitutionally elected Government of Ghana, which should not have succeeded save for a few single cowardly acts by other members of the Armed Forces.  When has JJ personally accounted for anything he has done in Ghana?  Aren’t we still looking for some missing persons from the AFRC and PNDC time?  Aren’t we still unclear about the murderers of the judges? And who gave the order for the other heads of state to be executed?  Do we have answers to these big-ticket items?  Isn’t there enough cause for us to be concerned that between him and his wife enough damage was created publicly and to individual persons?  Were it not for JJ the wheels of democracy would have chugged ahead faster than what we have today.

If we bring JJ back into the fray, our freedoms could well be curtailed.  If JJ comes back into mainstream politics, we will hear more war drums and fighting talk.  What other way does JJ know? His whole mark in history has been on a violence platform, with chaos and anger-preaching to gullible followers.  This is who President Mahama wants in his team?  How does he think he will control a loose cannon like Jerry John Agbotui Rawlings?

The Akatamanso has always covered for the rot in its backyard.  Woyome has not happened by accident and there are many more of such “woyome” types to come.  As long as we have recycled convicts and criminal elements in government (JJs words) we will cover the bridges and the planks will still rot (paraphrased from his own words).  JJ knows who they are, he put most of them in place, he understands them.

I will hold on for President John Mahama to wake up.  If he can clean up a little in the next three months, it will be good for Ghana.  To add more rotten planks to his woes is a major mistake.  An umbrella can cover only so much and no more.

Ghana, Aha a ye de papa.  Alius valde week advenio. Another great week to come!

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11 Responses to “Akatamanso Over Rotten Planks. Critical News, 2nd September 2012”

  1. Sydney,

    I take it without argument that the late president’s greatest achievement was the measure to which he succeeded in making JJ irrelevant to the politics of our dear nation.
    President Mills deliberately ignored the tantrums of JJ, to the latter’s annoyance. He somehow got “babies with sharp teeth” to deal squarely with his characteristic noise of probity accountabiliy…. Prof got his party chairman to tell Ghanaians who JJ really is: a bully. The actual term the ‘general’ used was “barking dog.” President Mills then delivered the coup de grace: He took the Rawlingses to Sunyani and floored them mercilessly.. A humiliation that will eat at their pride for life. They no doubt, deserved the ‘CIT’ the great Professor used.

    Under the ‘Asomdwehen’, JJ was fast fading off the political scene, whether you agree or not. For Prez Mahama to be courting the attentions of JJ today, is to repudiate the most significant achievement of the late president. Indeed no one in this dear country has ever succeeded in bringing JJ to the low that our dear Mills did. Many are those who have so desired and who silently enjoyed the efficiency and effectiveness with which the Prof was executing that special task. He would have finished that job in December, but “Fofie anto Atta” to wit: death did not permit finale.

    I want to assure Prez Mahama that many are the right thinking Ghanaians who will never forgive him for this palpable mistake. JJ in mainstream politics again? Aren’t we tired of bullying? Certainly the late president will not forgive Prez Mahama.

    I bless the soul of Prof. John Evans Fiifi Atta-Mills who almost succeeded in liberating us from the bullying of JJ. The man has bullied us for decades! what a shame the good Prof died so early.
    For his management of JJ, I would have given him a fourth term, constitution or no constitution! Now I am ready to punish with my thumb, whoever tries to undo probably the only unprecedented act of the ‘Asomdwehen’!

    Greetings from the beautiful hills of Twangiza

    Warmest regards,

    Roland Ross Ewool

  2. Sammy Welbeck said

    Hi Sydney ,
    I think that was good. A clear departure from Ghanaian type journalism

    Sent from my iPad

  3. Old Soldier said

    When, did the likes of Asiedu Nketia and his connoisseurs in government realize the need to accord Mr Rawlings the respect he deserves as the founder of the NDC party? Why have the regional ministers and even the chiefs in the Volta region suddenly seen the need to intervene and reconcile the NDC, when they were better positioned to have done that in the past or even prevent the conundrum from exacerbating this far? “Lead us not to temptation” is always a wiser prayer in politics than “deliver us from evil”. Professor Atta Mills and the NDC leadership had spurned numerous chances and time offered them to restore peace and harmony in the NDC. The acts and omissions of some party leaders and government officials clearly pointed to a well-orchestrated political agenda to intimidate, humiliate and vilify the former first couple and as well impugn their credibility and relevance in the NDC. They demonized the iconic figure in the party whose individual efforts and instrumentality won President Mills and his “saints” the power that has now clouded their consciousness like a drug and has caused them to rubbish the cardinal principles of conviction, probity and accountability. President Mills and his “boot lickers” obviously misconstrued the insistence of Mr. Rawlings on the need to respect these values on whose back the NDC rode to power.to mean the latter courted sympathy and garnered support for the presidential ambitions of his wife Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings…

  4. Kwame said

    Mr. Sydney Casely-Hayford I wrote on several occasions that I am no friend of John Jerry Rawlings but the fact is that the people involved in the murder of the judges were tried and executed apart from Amereka who escaped. Rawlings also caused to be tried, sentenced and executed some of his friends who were involved in murder. It is also on record that his friends who were also involved in other crimes were tried, sentenced, some of them are serving prison terms and some have been pardoned.
    The came in John Agyekum Kufuor in 2001 and during his regime the Ya Na and forty others, Issa Mobila, the nighbourhood watchdog members of Taifa, Rojo and others were murdered during that period, crimes that the NPP was unable to resolve and even at times goes to support the suspects. NPP members even go further to say that the people who were killed during their time in office deserved to be murdered.
    Rawlings has come out to offer apology to Ghanaians for the murders and missing people during his period in 1992, however Kufuor is yet to offer any apology to Ghanaians for the murders and drug trade during his period.

  5. Kow Kyemeinu said

    If there is anything for which I will forever remember the great Asomdwehen it was his ability to ‘asomdwemuly’ make JJ irrelevant to Ghanaian politics. To all intents and purposes that was the greatest achievement of the late President. JJ was fast fading off the scene under the Asomdwehen and that was not only good for Ghana but crucial for our progress and development as a people.By going back to court JJ, Prez Mahama is repudiating that achievement. Sober and well meaning Ghanaians will never forgive him.

  6. Efua Sackey said

    C-Hayford, your write up lacks substance and the attempt to link Jerry into your beautiful rotten planks under the Akatamanso took the shine off it. You ended up by giving us pure perfidies. Prez Mahama knows he needs the NDC TALISMAN to even make an impact let alone win the election. Only fools do not learn from their mistakes and certainly Prez Mahama has proved he’s no fool.

  7. Whatever said

    AFRC PNDC this and that. We are bored of those things. Don’t you have anything comtemporary to write about?

  8. Barima Yaw said

    JJ has hijacked, NDC, Mahama and Ghana. Why?

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    Akatamanso Over Rotten Planks. Critical News, 2nd September 2012 « Business in Ghana

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