It is an open secret that numerically speaking, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is decidedly a party of ethnic minorities and some disgruntled and politically disaffected members of the country’s Akan ethnic majority populace. So, strikingly like the Republican Party of the United States of America, the “Trumpian” leadership of the National Democratic Congress has had to find constitutionally unorthodox and alternative means of making our new model or democratic dispensation work for them and their members, supporters and sympathizers. Here in the United States, the Republicans have devised mischievously subtle and not so subtle ways of gerrymandering, or strategically redrawing congressional district boundaries to favor their candidates and ideological and political allies, and voter suppression to prevent large numbers of ethnic minorities like African Americans and Hispanics or Latin-Americans, both of whom tend to vote overwhelmingly in favor of the Democratic Party, from doing so.
And over there, in Ghana, what better way to achieve this than by impugning the transparency and integrity of the present unimpeachable electoral system and process by tactically and strategically sowing toxic seeds of suspicion and doubts in the minds of party members, supporters and sympathizers of the National Democratic Congress? In the process, these NDC leaders have recruited rough-and-ready opportunistic agent-provocateur mercenaries like University of Ghana political scientist Ransford Yaw Gyampo and Kwasi Amakye-Boateng, the rabble-rousing and populist political scientist of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), to do their ungodly and downright dirty work for them. Our focus here, however, will squarely be on Prof. Gyampo who well appears to have strategically constituted himself into a poster boy for the leadership of the National Democratic Congress and, in particular, as a sharpshooting and a hard-charging sniper for Mr. John “Akonfem-Kanazoe Ouagadougou” Dramani Mahama – aka The Dead Goat – that is, the former one-term President and the Dynastic Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress.
In his latest volley of diatribe, Prof. Gyampo claims that his meticulous and systematic research on the establishment of Ghana Card ID-issuing centers indicates that the overwhelming majority of the siting or location of these centers well appears to have been deliberately rigged up to favor the traditional strongholds of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP). Now, this is a very facile and disingenuous proposition and declaration to make because the traditional predominantly Akan-populated areas and strongholds of the New Patriotic Party also tend to be the most densely populated parts of the country, namely, Asante Region, Eastern Region, Bono Region, Ahafo Region, Bono-East Region, Greater-Accra and Central regions, the last two of which have been traditionally regarded as tossup or “Swing Regions; Western-North and, lately, North-East Region.
On the other hand, the passionately pro-NDC regions, such as the Volta, Oti, Savannah, Northern, Upper-East and Upper-West regions, tend to be relatively sparsely populated. The Parliamentary Representatives of these regions also tend to be “Overrepresented” in our National Assembly. Now, what this latter statement means is that Members of Parliament from the predominantly NDC-supported regions tend to numerically represent relatively far less numbers of registered eligible voters than the NPP-backed constituencies or congressional districts. What this means is that Prof. Gyampo, as vehemently demanded by the administrative staff of the Prof. Attafuah-headed National Identification Authority, will have to promptly provide his audience and the nation at large with an objectively credible breakdown of the population distribution of registered eligible voters in each of the 16 geographical and administrative regions of the country, and the number and locations of the National ID Card-Issuing Centers to prove his contention well beyond the proverbial iota of doubt.
So far, at least as of this writing, Prof. Gyampo was merely waxing vituperatively polemical and had yet to demonstrate any scholastic preparedness to staunchly and irrefutably back up his argument with the requisite data or facts and figures, as it were. Instead, the Akuapem-Larteh and Fante-Akyemfo (Saltpond) native appeared to have decided to tread the inexcusably gratuitous red-herring tack of vacuously accusing Prof. Attafuah and the entire establishment of the National Identification Authority of indulging in ratiocinative distraction or rhetorical and logical dodge by the circuitous use of elitist and highfalutin language to ride roughshod over the genuine concerns of a remarkable political minority of the Ghanaian electorate.
To the foregoing effect, this is what a visibly agitated Prof. Gyampo had to say: “Let the NIA and Prof. Attafuah not use eloquence and big English to be dismissive of challenges that stares[sic] at us in the face. Prof. Attafuah was in Parliament [recently?] and saw the reaction of the minority group…. There are two sides to every coin and as we seek to build Ghana, our efforts must be aimed at protecting the national interest and not to tout one’s supposed achievements that are highly contentious” (See “You Can Tickle Yourselves and Laugh but We Won’t Allow You to Plunge Ghana into Chaos – Prof. Gyampo Rubbishes NIA’s 24-Hour Ultimatum” Modernghana.com 3/11/23).
Prof. Gyampo cannot hide behind the ad-hominem rhetoric of personal barbs and invectives instead of providing his audience and the nation at large with forensically sustainable evidence for his patently scandalous and immitigably defamatory assertion, if this media-addicted fixture and faux soapbox civil rights activist or advocate wants his opinions to be taken seriously. Demanding that the administrative staff of the NIA engage themselves and their attention in a constructive consensus-building dialogue over the sole use of the Ghana Card as a legitimate or the only legitimate voting requirement sounds perfectly progressive and unimpeachable. But, of course, any studious observer of the political and strategic Modus Operandi of the leadership of the National Democratic Congress must be fully aware of the fact that for the movers-and-shakers of the NDC, it is absolutely not a question of creating the proverbial level playing ground; rather, it is almost wholly and squarely about sheer bluster, that is, steadily and systematically bombarding the relatively more progressive, conciliatory and moderately minded leadership of the ruling New Patriotic Party with empty threats and crude and raw intimidation tactics to see what these bloody ballot-rigging National Democratic Congress’ robber-barons could get away with in the runup to the watershed 2024 General Election.
And the stark and objective reality here is that there is not much that these pathological and megalomaniacal agitators and their lily-livered hacks and shills could get away with. It is also downright absurd for Prof. Gyampo to pontifically and imperiously discount the indisputably credible and even authoritative observation by Dr. Dominic Ayine, the sometime Mahama-appointed Deputy Attorney-General and Deputy Minister of Justice and front-row member of the National Democratic Congress, that the administrators of the National Identification Authority have absolutely no “trust deficit” or crisis of confidence with the overwhelming majority of Ghana’s electorate. As well, we may agree to disagree that, in the evergreen words of the mythical Mr. Long John Silver, protagonist of famous British novelist Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island,” that “Dead Me Don’t Bite” or “Dead Men Tell No Tales.”
The incontrovertible fact of the matter, even as our ancient Akan philosophers and sages were known to maintain, however, is that: “The tongues of sagacious dead men [and dead women as well] do not rot,” when we both hunch down to brass-tacks. In other words, whatever the deceased globally acclaimed Founding-father of the National Democratic Congress, that is, Chairman Jeremiah “Jerry” John Rawlings, said even a decade-plus ago vis-à-vis the unimpeachable validity of the use of a National ID Card as a surefire guarantee to a clean and a credible election cannot be cavalierly invalidated by the 40-Something-Year-Old Prof. Gyampo, merely because the speaker or the fountain of such wisdom has either descended or ascended into eternity or “transitioned into the ages,” as former US President Barack Hussein Obama said upon the seismic and epochal passing of the legendary President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, of the Post-Apartheid Republic of South Africa.
In short, we cannot continue to mindlessly and recklessly corrupt or debauch the integrity of Ghanaian democracy merely because a handful of thievish National Democratic Congress megalomaniacal apparatchiks would have our hard-fought and hard-won democratic culture cheaply sacrificed on the obscene altar of their selfish craving for power and the wanton exploitation of the overwhelming majority of the Ghanaian citizenry. Enough of the unconscionable shenanigans of these Cash-and-Carry “Dumsor-crats”!
*Visit my blog at: KwameOkoampaAhoofeJr
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
March 17, 2023
E-mail: [email protected]