Politics, apart from being a game of numbers and strategy, is also a game of words. It is often said that great politicians are those who have mastery over words. They usually know what to say, how to say it and when to say it to appease the electorates. They usually speak less, listen more, and act greatly.
Words are powerful tool for construction and destruction. Words said in the past, words being said now, and words to be said in the future, have the potential to build up or erode political fortunes and reputations.
We convince electorates with words and also put them off with words. We win votes through words and lose votes through words. The degree of a person’s credibility is largely determined by his own words. If you are a politician and people begin to doubt the credibility of what you say, you are finished.
So it’s, because in politics, every little thing is a very big thing. You cannot think of winning an election without approaching politics as a game of words.
I have always said if words of people are what is drowning a person, words of other people can save him. However, if what is drowning the person are his or her own words, words of others cannot save him or her. No amount of PR gimmicks would save such a person.
Talking about words and their effects in politics, Dr. Bawumia has now become a victim of his own words. He has personally made certain statements, and wild promises in the past, most of which disputable and unfulfilled, that can really cost the NPP a great deal of political fortune in 2024.
No matter who becomes the party’s candidate for 2024, if those videos of Dr. Bawumia are played as propaganda tools, the party would inescapably suffer some bruises. However, it shall be worse for the party should the party mistakenly elect him as a candidate.
I have personally seen some of the videos and, believe you, me, any objective person would tell you that those videos making rounds on social media are really politically damning. We cannot pretend that that is not a big deal. Such things are really big deal everywhere in the world relative to elections.
So, why would the NPP decide to present a candidate whose campaign promises would be taken with a pinch of salt by a significant number of electorates? For example, how would Dr. Bawumia convince the good people of Cape Coast and, for that matter, the Central Region to take his campaign promises serious as a candidate considering the harbor-airport debacle?
Still talking about words, why would the NPP decide to present a candidate who is not able to speak the Akan Language, which is understood by about 80% of Ghana’s population? How would he be able to connect and sell his campaign message to the indigenous Akan people who make up about 50% of the Ghanaian Population, when we have a more marketable candidate who speaks Twi, Fante and Ga so fluently and connects with them effortlessly?
I learnt Alhaji is now being taught how to speak Twi and some other local dialects by a Linguistic Professor. Let’s be serious, it’s too late and dangerous.
You see, one danger about language, particularly in politics, is that, one wrong word or sentence spoken, can be your eternal nemesis. A good messenger is the one who, naturally, is able to connect with his or her audience through his or her words.
Finally, without being malicious, let me somberly say that, it saddens my heart that in today’s Ghana, if you ask Google, “Who is the biggest liar in Ghana?” the name that comes out is Dr. Bawumia, our Vice President. I don’t know what can be done about it, but, fellow patriots, this isn’t something that should be taken lightly at all as a party. With him as a candidate, I think the 8 would rather break us into opposition.
I don’t know those who are handling him, but, I think they should find a way to control some of the things he says. The kind of reactions his recent Ashesi University lecture has generated are not good for his reputation and credibility. His speechwriters didn’t help him at all.
In this day and age where every claim can be easily fact-checked, it is highly irresponsible to put out there some categorical claims without thorough research to ascertain the veracity of the claims before they are made. As I have said, in politics, every little thing is a very big thing.
In spite of all these and many other unfavorable factors that are hitting hard against him, some people, because of greed and personal interest, want the party to believe that he is the party’s best for the 2024 presidential election.
Never forget, the NDC remains the propaganda experts. They even succeeded in crafting propaganda out of the Free SHS policy against the party in the 2020 elections. What do you think they would do with those damning videos? Asem sebe!
E. G. Buckman
• A former 2-terms Cape Coast Constituency Youth Organizer
• Former Presiding Member, Cape Coast Metro Assembly
• 2004 Parliamentary Aspirant