Atta Mills stood aloof whilst acts of tribalism were perpetrated right under his nose.

By Daniel Damptey Danquah
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By Daniel Damptey Danquah

9/6/2008 2:13:19 AM -

To those of you who believe in the lies being fed them by John Jerry Rawlings and his hand-picked successor, John Evans Atta Mills who also feel the only way they could regain power is to fan the embers of ethnicity, I have this word of advice for them. Come December 7, 2008, they will have the shock of their lives. The Volta Region, which hitherto had been the waterloo of all political parties with the exception of the Nefarious Destructive Cancer [NDC] would join hands with the Progressives Forces to sing “Free at last! Thank God we are free at last!”

It will be reminiscent of the events which occurred on the day Jesus died as is recounted in St. Matthew Gospel' Chapter 27, verse 51. “Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; the earth quaked, and the rocks were split”. That will be the day the Volta Region will join the mainstream of Ghanaian politics by voting overwhelmingly for the New Patriotic Party led by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, the indefatigable Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party.

Let me ask this question. What do people of the Region have to show for all the years of hard work, sacrifices and votes which they have given to the NDC – a party led by Rawlings, the “Son of the Soil”? He used to be Leader and Founder of the NDC. When did the NDC embark on the Keta Sea Defence Wall Project? This was an ongoing project which Kufuor's administration continued. But why did they wait till the tail end of their tenure before starting? Let us not forget the Accra- Aflao Road project and many other projects, too numerous to recount that were initiated and completed by the Kufuor-led NPP Administration.. Infact Kufuor is Owusu, the stranger in the poem, “Owusu” who left indelible footprints in a strange land.

I love the new Patriotic Party and nothing will make me change my mind. I was born into the tradition and I found out that I couldn't have joined a better tradition. The party embraces all, for it does not discriminate against anybody. It believes in law and order and respect for constituted authority. Members do not go about inciting the masses against their elected representatives and the sitting President. Its leaders do not use physical strength and state apparatus to force their will on subordinates. Members of the NPP always reason to disagree. The current President has respect for his Vice, and is not like the ex-President, who threw caution to the wind and gave an uppercut to the jaw of his Vice who had been his wife's god-father during their wedding. Another blow to the groin of the feeble Arkaa and the old man fell flat on the floor while the bully stood tall over him [Arkaa] who was now grimacing in pain.

Yes, this is Rawlings, the bully for you! This is Rawlings, the man who believes in the adage that, “might is always right” and signed his party's constitution with his own blood. By so doing, did he not enter a secret pact with the devil?

Rawlings and members of the NDC claim the country is much more polarized and divided than ever. They accuse the Kufuor's administration of engaging in acts of tribalism. They talk of reconciliation and oneness. Sure, we need them. But let me pose this question: Since when have Rawlings and members of the NDC exhibited these tendencies? At least, the pummeling of the late Nkenson Arkaa by Rawlings, the beating up of Frances Essian by the Azorka boys on Rawlings' instructions and the escape from death of their former national chairman, Obed Asamoah by hair breath is a testimony to the fact that forgiveness and reconciliation do not exist in the vocabulary and Dictionary of the Rawlingses.

The Danquah-Busia tradition detests dictatorship, tribalism and favoritism. It upholds the principle of probity accountability, dignity of human life and guarantees all the individual freedoms enshrined in the United Nations Charter and our Constitution. Above all it believes in the existence of One indivisible and Universal God.

Sometimes, I wonder whether it is only those people in the New Patriotic Party who really see good things and applaud them. Our brethren on the other side of the political divide, especially those in the NDC have through their utterances vowed to make this country ungovernable and are acting a well rehearsed script to actualize their treasonable felony. The national Assembly (Parliament) is supposed to comprise Honourable members. But our brothers in the NDC have chosen to travel the path of dishonour. Honourable Twumasi Appiah, MP for Sene is one person who is giving a bad name to the House. He makes reckless statements anytime he comes on air. He preaches violence. But like that Brutus says in the tragedy “Julius Caesar” when he declares that Cassius could only threaten his slaves and bondmen and not those of us committed to a just cause, I wish to re-iterate that they alone do not have the recipe of violence. It is unfortunate that an Honorable Member of such an Honourable House could be making inflammatory statements which are capable of affecting our body polity. Achike Udenwa, former Executive Governor of Imo State had this to say on violence. “When these things start, disturbance doesn't know who is who. Bullets flying around don't know who is who. It is the duty of all of us to find peace.”

As a follow up to my previous write up, I have today chosen to debunk the allegation of tribalism preferred against President Kufour by the flag bearer of the NDC, John Evans Fiifi Atta Mills, the Founder of the Nefarious Destructive Cancer, Jerry John Rawlings, the General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia and other high ranking officials of the party. Thanks to Mike Adjei, Ghanaians now know the truth. He goes about his analysis of tribalism against Rawlings and his (P) NDC with a toothcomb in his book,” Death and Pain in Rawlings'Ghana. The inside story.”

I don't hate any race. However I am compelled to bring out these facts to dispel the erroneous impression being created by members of the NDC that Kufuor's Government is for Ashantis and Ashantis only. You may call me names but I believe I will be doing the generality of Ghanaians much good if I lay bare the facts the way they are. Ewes are a very good people as my interaction with many of them has revealed. Most of my friends are Ewes and three of my brothers are married to Ewes. We peacefully co-exist with them. Go to my hometown and you will not see any difference between Ewes and Akims. But anytime members of the NDC speak they allege Kufour is practicing tribalism. They allege Ashantis are holding top and very sensitive positions in Kufuor's Government. We have to nip this cancer of tribalism in the bud with the following revelations.

By 1984, Ewes were occupying almost all the Commanding positions in the country' Armed Forces. Major General Arnold Quainoo, Chief of Defence Staff (and the so-called Buffalo soldier who got humiliated with his demolition and the appointment of General Dogonyaro as ECOMOG Commander – a position the former had occupied) was appointed Force commander to enable him move the troops.
Brigadier Dzopgbeluku became Commandant of the Armed Forces Staff College while Lt. Col. Tetteh who was Commandant of the First Infantry Brigade in Sunyani got promoted and appointed Commandant of the Military Academy and Training School (MATS). Air Commodore Dumashie, who had retired from the Air-force was re-instated and put in charge of the Air Force Training School at Takoradi. The Fourth Squadron of the Accra Air Force Station which is the combat wing of the force had Wing Commander Doke as Deputy Air Force Commander. Colonel Naapie Goumil became Border Guards commander while Brigadier Klutse was sent to the Fifth Battalion in Accra as Commander.

Air Marshal James Kotei, the late General Kotei's brother was made Air Force Commander. But his two Deputies were Ewes. When he was sent to Ivory Coast as Ambassador, Air Commodore Dumashie succeeded him. Major Wallace Gbedemah became the first Commander of the Operations Room at the PNDC Headquarters. He was replaced by Captain Courage Quarshigah. The Inspector General of Police was Ralph Kugblenu. Kwao Lotsu was General Manager of GNA. Dr G.K. Agana was first appointed Chairman of the Board of Bank of Ghana and later made Governor of Bank of Ghana. The Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) was headed by Capt. Tsikata.

David Anaglate was Director of News and Current Affairs of the GBC and later appointed Acting Director of GBC in 1982. Christian Aggrey was Editor of the Ghanaian Times while another Ewe, Owusu Sarpong became his Deputy.

Two of the three Vice Chancellors of the Country's Universities were also Ewes.
So you see, when people try to confuse Ghanaians by concocting malicious lies to make Kufour's administration seem tribalistic, those of us who know the facts owe it a responsibility to set the records straight with the true facts.

To further debunk the notion that Kufour's administration is tribalistic, I dare the National Democratic Congress to publish verbation the debate in Parliament on the ethnic composition in the Ghana Armed Forces as published in the Hansard and you would be shocked at the contributions of the Members of Parliament from the NDC side of the House.

Mike Adjei writes in his book “Death and pain .Rawlings Ghana. The inside story” that “when a decision was taken during the NLC era to recruit more policemen into the service, An Ewe Commissioner of Police was asked to handle the exercise. All the recruits from the Volta Region turned out to be Ewes, of course. So did all the recruits from the Northern Region, which has perhaps the lowest number of migrant Ewes in the country. Gen. J. A. Ankrah, Chairman of the then ruling NLC, called the Commissioner and asked him whether all the people in the North had now become Ewes. Former IGP Bawa Yakubu was asked to compile a new list”

Can you imagine that Gilchrist Olympia, a Togolese, who was involved in a treasonable act against the Government of his home country, was one time using a Ghanaian Diplomatic Passport? We have also not forgotten how Michael Sousoudis, the half-caste cousin of Rawlings was exchanged for eight full-bloody Ghanaian in the sousoudis-CIA imblogo in 1985.

The late Professor A. Adu Boahene had this to say during the J.B Danquah memorial lectures he delivered at the British Council Hall in 1998.
“My third Major criticism of Rawlings and the PNDC is their fanning, wittingly or unwittingly, consciously or unconsciously, of ethnicity or as it is more popularly, though wrongly termed, tribalism. Is it not strange and rather unfortunate that, the Head of National Security, two of the three Heads of country's universities, the acting Governor of the Bank Of Ghana and the Head of the National Investment Bank and I'm sure there are others – all happen to belong to the same ethnic group or at least from a single region of the country?

“Can Chairman Rawlings tell us the ethnic composition of his closest advisers and colleagues?...... whether the Flt-Lt is aware of this or not, this situation is giving the unfortunate impression that the country is being dominated and ruled by that single ethnic group and this impression us causing such anger and irritation that in the interest of national reconciliation and peace measures should be taken to particularly provoking and should be corrected as soon as possible.”

What I have done is not to whip up sentiments against any one particular tribe. No, far from it. But I have presented a true picture of what went on yesteryears under the regime of the man who has adopted a holier than thou posture to accuse the incumbent President of the same alleged crime that was perpetrated by him on a larger scale. Or was it a mere co-incidence that the three Tsikata brothers or cousins (Kodjo, Tsatsu and Fui) all found themselves holding very sensitive positions in Rawlings government? Was it that there were not people equally qualified to take charge of the positions held by the Tsikatas?

And if I may ask, what has professor Atta Mills said about the tribalism that went on under Rawlings? If he has not deemed it fit to comment on it, what gives him the moral stand to accuse Kuffuor of engaging in tribalism? How many Ashantis are in Kufour's as compared with the number of Ewes who found themselves in the PNDC albeit Rawlings-Mills Government? And if we should accept the argument that the population of Ashanti Region is far more than any other region, doesn't it stand to reason that those appointees from the region should outnumber those from other regions, assuming a quota system is even entrenched in our constitution?.

Infact, Atta Mills and the hawks in the NDC should be the last to complain that Kufour is a tribalist. See all the development projects in other regions. Does this show the tendency of a person who is inclined to only his tribe (Ashantis)?s As for me, I shall ever be very grateful to the New Patriotic Party otherwise referred to as the Nobles Peoples Party or Nnipa Papa Party for putting in place such pragmatic measures to make the country move forward. And in all sincerity, if I may ask, “why did Rawlings sack Tsatu Tsikata as Chief Executive Officer of GNPC? If he was competent as we are being made to believe by the very person who sacked him?

We demand an immediate answer to this question from the Jerry Rawlings, the John Evans Atta Mills, and the John Mahamas, the Kwabena Agyeis, the Johnson Asiedu Nketiahs, the Ayarigas, the Iddrisu Mahamas, the Fuseini Inusahs, the Ato Ahwois, the Ama Benyiwa Does and a host of NDC's apologists

Daniel Danquah Damptey.
[email protected]
0243715297

Disclaimer: "The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article." © Daniel Damptey Danquah.

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