“Ghanaian” Mahama Picks “Gold Coaster” Amissah-Arthur for Second String
8/2/2012 9:43:35 AM -
During a week's commemoration of the passing of Ghana's President John Evans Atta-Mills, recently, the newly-sworn President John Dramani Mahama was reported to have rather flippantly and sarcastically observed that his predecessor's 'divinely ordained' death had facilitated a paradigm-shift, in which the mantle of national leadership had been handed over to a new generation of citizens who were born in the country's post-independence era (See 'Prez Mahama Taunts 'Old Man' Akufo-Addo: God Has Shifted the Mantle of Power to New Generation' The Hajj/GNA/Modernghana.com 8/1/12). Needless to say, in the four-month period leading to Election 2012, the Akufo-Addo Campaign operatives ought to be studiously following and swiftly riposting the characteristically frivolous and cheap voter-pandering remarks and comments of Transitional-President John D. Mahama, if Ghanaians are to be opportunely and deservedly returned to a salutary democratic governance.
If, indeed, Ghana's newly-appointed president is firmly of the foregoing view, then, truthfully speaking, the 53-year-old former Communications Minister from Bole-Bamboi does not appear to be fully prepared to take God up on His /Her paradigm-shift edict. For, in choosing his Vice-President and the man likely to succeed him should he become incapacitated, Mr. Mahama defiantly chose Mr. Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, a clearly jaded banking and financial-market operative who, at 61 years old, was born in the former Gold Coast, just like Mr. Mahama's main political rival and Ghana's former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
The Presidential Candidate of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), on the other hand, in choosing the 49-year-old Dr. Mahammadu Bawumia, appears to have exhibited far more political maturity and thus amply demonstrated the fact that he is the better prepared Ghanaian leader to take God up on His/Her quite beneficent decision to shift the reins of governance to a new crop and a new generation of Ghanaian leaders.
Comparatively speaking, the Russian-educated President Mahama also appears to woefully lack the requisite emotional and psychological maturity in deciding on significant national issues, such us deciding on such very basic issue as the burial place of the recently deceased President John Evans Atta-Mills, barely a week after the former's assumption of the presidency.
Then also, his selection of Mr. Amissah-Arthur as vice-president lacks creative ingenuity; for, needless to say, it is an open-secret that Mr. Amissah-Arthur studiously collaborated with Ghana's longest-serving Minister of Finance and Economic Planning in callously slipping the noose of abject socioeconomic deprivation, otherwise globally known as the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) on the already 'Rawlings-Necklaced Necks' of 'Lumpen-Poor' Ghanaians. It would take the remarkable genius and innovative leadership of President John Agyekum-Kufuor, working hand-in-glove and around the clock with Drs. Paul Acquah and, you guessed right, Mahammadu Bawumia at the Bank of Ghana, and the IMF-World Bank-designed HIPC program to resuscitate the severely damaged Ghanaian economy, largely due to Mr. Rawlings' gross mismanagement, and finally infuse a powerful dosage of dignity into the life of the proverbial average Ghanaian, while also deftly and healthily inspiring Ghanaian youths with hope and planting smiles on their faces.
Conversely and all-too-peevishly, during the past three-and-half years that Mr. Amissah-Arthur was Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Ghanaians, once again, began to exhibit bitter signs of acute anxiety as the nation's monetary currency, the Cedi, plummeted precipitously on the global money market as a direct result of Mr. Amissah-Arthur's unconscionable supervision of a second parallel economically regressive regime in which many a successful native Ghanaian businessman and woman preferred to internally trade, or conduct business, by the exclusive use of the American Dollar, at the expense of the Cedi and the health of Ghana's economy - that, in short, is the history of the direct cause of the Cedi's freefall.
And so, really, come December 7, 2012, the real choice before the responsible Ghanaian voter is between unreservedly retaining the pseudo-socialist regime of the Mahama-Arthur-led vigilante and self-serving and incurably corrupt 'Judgment-Debt' government of the National Democratic Congress, that is, if you are also naïve enough to believe that Mr. Alfred Agbesi Woyome is the most patriotic Ghanaian entrepreneur to be criminally fleeced by the Kufuor-led New Patriotic Party government, on the one hand; and, of course, that of the tried-and-tested and results-oriented and now-Akufo-Addo and Bawumia-led New Patriotic Party that sports the enviably inclusive platform of free qualitative elementary and high school education for all Ghanaian youths, affordable healthcare (as proven by the Kufuor-led NPP) and a decent and affordable housing for all.
*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D., is Associate Professor of English, Journalism and Creative Writing at Nassau Community College of the State University of New York, Garden City. He is Director of The Sintim-Aboagye Center for Politics and Culture and author of 'Dr. J. B. Danquah: Architect of Modern Ghana' (iUniverse.com, 2005). E-mail: email@example.com.