Kwamena Ahwoi’s Working With Rawlings – Amidu’s Critique VIII - Part II

Feature Article Kwamena Ahwois Working With Rawlings – Amidus Critique VIII - Part II
MAY 22, 2023 LISTEN

The author, Kwamena Ahwoi, socially constructed the years 1999 -2000 into two very difficult years for President Rawlings and the NDC in which very difficult manoeuvres had to be made and decisions taken. In self-glorification and gloating, the author states that: “I was involved in most of these very difficult manoeuvres and decisions”. The author also stated what he perceived to be the major events making up the two difficult years to include: (i) the “Swedru Declaration” which was allegedly triggered off by the politics of Rawlings’ succession; (ii) the split within the NDC giving rise to the formation of the National Reform Party (NRP); (iii) the “Ho Coronation” of Professor Mills as the NDC presidential candidate for the 2000 elections; (iv) the search for a running mate to partner Professor Mills for the 2000 elections and the eventual choice of Martin Amidu; and (v) the personality of President Rawlings and its effect on Professor Mills’ 2000 presidential campaign, amongst others.

A cursory review of the alleged major events chosen by the author to socially construct his two difficult years reduces the events into a single theme: the politics of the succession to President Rawlings and the indispensable role of Professor Mills’ puppet masters in that enterprise. Kwamena Ahwoi constructed his narrative of the events in such a manner as to make his cohort of puppet masters of Professor Mills and he to emerge the heroes of those two difficult years while President Rawlings’ wife and Rawlings together with others were cast as the villains. It is, therefore, necessary in this critique and subsequent ones, to deconstruct the fabricated facts used to socially construct Kwamena Ahwoi’s self-serving narrative in order to expose the muddled and unethical reasoning he used to arrive at his self- gloating conclusions.

The Swedru Declaration and the politics of the succession

The author, Kwamena Ahwoi, began with what his other puppet masters and him coined as the “Swedru Declaration”. President Rawlings is quoted by the author to have said at a rally at Agona Swedru in the Central Region at the anniversary celebration of the June 4 Revolution on June 6, 1998, that: “I will support the Vice President, Professor Mills, if he decides to contest the 2000 presidential elections” (Emphasis supplied). The author also wrote unequivocally at page 142 of Working with Rawlings that it was the media that

reported that: ‘…. President Rawlings had announced that Professor Mills would be the NDC presidential candidate for the 2000 election. And that became known as the “Swedru Declaration”’.

An objective reading and analysis of the authors own written narrative of President Rawlings’ quoted statement leaves one in no doubt that President Rawlings did not declare his Vice- President (Professor Mills), whose political handler and chief puppet master was the author as his successor to be the presidential candidate of the NDC in the 2000 elections. Vice President Mills was given the free will and choice by President Rawlings’ verbatim statement at the Agona Swedru June 4 rally on 6 June 1998 to decide whether or not he was ready, able, and willing to contest the 2000 presidential elections on the ticket of the NDC.

On the foregoing premises, the mis-reportage of President Rawlings’ statement at the Agona Swedru June 4 rally by the media and Prof. Mills’ supporters within the NDC, including the self-appointed puppet masters of the politically naïve Vice President, of the clear words of President Rawlings do not support the self-fulling prophecies and conjectures that Vice President Mills had been anointed by Rawlings as the presidential candidate of the NDC for the 2000 elections.

The self-fulfilling presentation by the author of what Rawlings said at Agona Swedru as a final decision, directive, and instruction to the NDC and Professor Mills to be the NDC presidential candidate for the 2000 elections partakes of the design of the author to present Rawlings as an autocrat dictating who was to succeed him for the 2000 elections. It was deliberately intended as a traitorous insult to the excellent management skills of President Rawlings as Chairman of the PNDC and later as the constitutional President of Ghana.

My previous critique of Working with Rawlings has demonstrated with supporting analysis and data that from the moment President Rawlings made the political misjudgment of entrusting the author with sensitizing Professor Mills to interest him in running with Rawlings as the vice presidential candidate of the NDC for the 1996 elections, the author and his Ahwoi brothers saw themselves as the minders, handlers, and puppet masters of Professor Mills within the NDC. As the author wrote at page 125 of Working with Rawlings, he quickly discovered Professor Mills’ political naive nature: ‘This was Professor Mills’ political baptism of fire and in his political naiveté he asked me: “Is something happening in Tamale today? Why are there so many people at the Airport?”’

In the author’s narrative, the future NDC Vice President Mills made these enquiries and statements when he saw a sea of human heads beyond the tarmac of the Tamale Airport - the population of Tamale who had been mobilized to the Airport to welcome and receive him as the party’s presidential running mate to be the Northern Region. The author thus painted Professor Mills as politically naïve and in so doing asserted the author’s superior role as the new vice presidential candidate’s primary puppet master, who got him the nomination as the NDC’s vice presidential candidate for the 1996 elections. The author wittingly cemented his belief in Professor Mills political naivete and Mills’ abundant gratitude to the author as his chief puppet master when the author wrote on the same page that: “When I told him that they were there to welcome him, he slowly muttered: ‘Oh my God! What have I let myself into?’

The author continued to assert his dominance as the chief puppet master of vice president Mills even after President Rawlings and Professor Mills had won the 1996 presidential elections. An example is the manner he skewed his understanding of President Rawlings’ Agona Swedru statement of 6 June 1998 in his Working with Rawlings published in July 2020. Any minimally and reasonably educated person would not have missed the point that President Rawlings never imposed the decision whether or not to contest for the Presidential slot of the NDC for the 2000 presidential elections on his then Vice President.

Consequently, President Rawlings naturally had no reason to consult anybody whether to make the open offer he made at Agona Swedru to his Vice President. The fact that different operatives of the NDC approached their understanding of the substantive statement made by President Rawlings with their own bank of knowledge and self-fulfilling prophecies to derive their preferred subjective interpretations of what he said cannot be attributed to what President Rawlings said on 6 June 1998 at Agona Swedru.

The author discloses at pages 144 to 150 of Working with Rawlings that his faction as Professor Mills’ puppet masters, and Dr. Obed Asamoah in his book “The Political History of Ghana (1950-2013): The Experience of a Non-conformist”, interpretated President Rawlings’ offer to support Professor Mills’ decision to contest for the 2000 presidential election with similar expectations from their respective bank of knowledge. The disclosures constitute what is known in the study of social interaction, psychology, social psychology, and conflict studies as self-fulfilling prophecy of party’s expectations.

Dr. Obed Asamoah is reported by the author to have written on page 463 of Dr. Asamoah’s book that: “if the matter had been discussed beforehand, I (meaning he, Obed Asamoah) would have supported it anyway.” The author then states his own self-fulfilling prophecy thus: “Similarly, I am sure that if President Rawlings had discussed the matter with any or all three of us, we would have supported it anyway. The truth, however, is that, he did not.” The words ‘with any or the three of us” in the immediate quoted sentence refers to the arch puppet masters of Professor Mills - Ato Ahwoi, Kwamena Ahwoi and Totobi-Quakyi” (see page 144 of Working with Rawlings).

The author of Working with Rawlings has been shown in my previous critiques of his supposedly scholarly work to have also allowed his own self-fulfilling prophecies of future events to dictate his fabrication of evidence and conclusions from rumours and other unethical sources of academic scholarship. This disregard for the use of research data and experiential learning to guide objective reporting of events is the only plausible explanation for the author who after quoting President Rawlings’ statement that: “I will support the Vice President, Professor Mills, if he decides to contest the 2000 presidential elections” still found it self-fulling, mischievous, and traitorous to conclude that Rawlings did not consult Mills before the Swedru Declaration “….because he clearly considered Mills as his subordinate rather than a substantive successor who might transcend him.”

After the offer made by President Rawlings at Agona Swedru to support his Vice President, the onus shifted to Professor Mills and his minders, handlers, and puppet masters of whom Kwamena Ahwoi was the most visible chief puppet master to either accept or reject the offer. The three puppet masters were present in Agona Swedru, heard the clear words of President Rawlings, and knew that President Rawlings never appointed or nominated Professor Mills to succeed him at the Agona Swedru rally on 6 June 1998. The three puppet masters were, however, happy with the statement of offer made to Vice President Mills, upon whose future rested their political ambitions to remain in power and drive a wedge between Rawlings, and Mills. President Rawlings cannot, therefore, from Kwamena Ahwoi’s own quotation of what he said at Agona Swedru take responsibility for the interpretation of his offer and the self- fulfilling prophecies with which the puppet masters misreported the offer to the absentee Professor Mills.

I served in the PNDC from February 1982 to 6 January 1993. I also served in the NDC 1, and NDC 2 Governments under President Rawlings from 7 January 1993 to 6 January 2001. I spent cumulatively twelve and half upwards years as the only Deputy Attorney General and PNDC Deputy Secretary for Justice during the PNDC regime, and the only Deputy Attorney General and Minister for Justice under the first two constitutional Governments. I had known, fraternized, experienced, and formed observable impressions of those who self-appointed themselves the puppet masters of Professor Mills due to his inexperience within the political landscape of the PNDC/NDC regimes. These were opportunists from the inception of the PNDC regime who always arrogated to themselves the right to use the state media to achieve their ulterior self-interested motives in the reportage of Government activities and statements. The Goebbels’ of Ghanaian politics within the PNDC, NDC1, and NDC2 regimes who could manipulate and control the mind of fellow citizens to attain their personal and selfish ends. One such puppet master lost his portfolio for one such unscrupulous and banal manipulation and misrepresentation of the policies of the Government only to be rehabilitated a few years down the line.

The internalized attitude of these puppet masters and self-styled Goebbels’ leads one to the reasonable conclusion that the media reportage of what President Rawling actually said at Agona Swedru was wittingly stage managed with a gullible media to achieve the wishes of Professor Mills’ handlers who occupied sensitive positions within the Government of NDC 2 at the time. They wittingly saw President Rawlings’ offer as an opportunity for the achievement of their political ambitions since they had already succeeded in making Professor Mills to be beholden to them for bringing him into the NDC for acceptance and subsequent election with Rawlings at the 1996 elections.

As the author, Kwamena Ahwoi’s Working with Rawling brings out from beginning to end, these puppet masters also played the role of double agents with both President Rawlings and Professor Mills in their opportunist anticipation of the later succeeding the former as President of Ghana at the 2000 presidential elections. The childlike question that Working with Rawlings leaves unanswered is what they told the absentee Professor Mills was what President Rawlings really said at the Agona Swedru rally on 6 June 1998.

Professor Mills taught the law of contract, commercial law, and company law for several years at the School of Administration of the University of Ghana. He also taught Commercial Law with the late DR. Richard Benjamin Turkson at the University of Ghana’s Faculty of Law for a number of years. He had a clear understanding of what an offer meant. There could, therefore, be no doubt that if Kwamena Ahwoi and his two other friends and co- conspirators referred to by Dr. Obed Asamoah in his book quoted by the author, had dutifully conveyed the exact words of President Rawlings to Professor Mills he would not have reacted or come to the conclusions the author attributes to the quoted hearsay statements of Mr. J. E.

E. Turkson, Vice President Mills’ Secretary.

The author quotes Mr. J. E. E. Turkson to have allegedly told the author the reaction of Professor Mills when he was told about the “Sewdru Declaration” as follows: “Mr. Turkson, ame ankasa menka de me rehwehwe President edzi” (meaning Mr. Turkson, I have not said I want to be President).” In what also appears to be hearsay confirmation of Mr. Turkson’s hearsay statement, the author paraphrases what Mr. J. Bebaako-Mensah then Secretary to the Cabinet allegedly said in confirmation of Mr. Turkson’s words as follows:

“That was confirmed by Mr. J. Bebaako-Mensah, then Secretary to the Cabinet, who stated that while the Cabinet Ministers were very happy about the Swedru Declaration, Professor Mills himself was indifferent. However, Mr. Bebaako-Mensah was of the view that the Swedru Declaration did not affect his attitude and performance.”

The conclusion any reasonable person can draw from Professor Mills reaction to the offer President Rawlings made to him as his vice president at the Agona Swedru June 4 rally of 1998 is that the puppet masters misreported to him what Rawlings indeed said on that day. An accurate reportage of Rawlings’ words would have alerted Professor Mills to the fact that President Rawlings only made a declaration of intent in the nature of an offer to Professor Mills to voluntarily decide whether he was going to contest the 2000 presidential elections on

the ticket of the NDC. Professor Mills would not have deluded himself that President Rawlings had irrevocably appointed or nominated him as his only successor.

The fact that what President Rawlings said at Agona Swedru was misrepresented by the media, friends and puppeteers to Professor Mills is brought out in the author’s narrative of what one of the three puppeteers referred to in Dr. Asamoah’s book and who was present in Agona Swedru was later told by Professor Mills. The author writes:

“According to former Information and later National Security Minister Kofi Totobi- Quakyi, when Professor Mills heard the media rendition of the ‘Swedru Declaration’, his reaction was: ‘Swedru yi odze asem beba’ (meaning this Swedru thing will bring trouble.)”

The foregoing narrative and quotation from the author supports the incontestable conclusion that even one of the gang of three, Mr. Kofi Totobi-Quakyi, the former Information and later National Security Minister who was present when the Agona Swedru offer to Professor Mills was made, failed, or refused to tell Professor Mills the exacts words and content of the offer made to him by President Rawlings. The fact that the author continued to refer to the ‘“the

media rendition of the “Swedru Declaration’” underscores the contention that Professor Mills’ puppet masters were pursuing their own self-fulfilling prophecies and not what President Rawlings really offered at Agona Swedru.

There was nothing in President Rawlings’ statement of intent in the nature of an offer to Professor Mills that may remotely be interpreted as offending any provisions under the 1992 Constitution or any democratic norms to warrant the pernicious assertion by Kwamena Ahwoi that: “the NDC was still an autocracy with power increasingly concentrated in President Rawlings and his social circles.” The conclusion from the imagined and unidentified alternative ideological interpretation that: “From their various reactions, it was clear that state officials, NDC officials, including Vice President Mills, the media and the general population understood the Swedru Declaration as the equivalent of a Rawlings presidential decree” are the results of author’s own expectations and self-fulfilling prophecies based on no verifiable facts as demanded of any scholarly work. This constituted a continued insult to the intelligence of President Rawlings as a distinguished statesman by the author.

A close reading of Kwamena Ahwoi’s Working with Rawlings and the quotations attributed to Professor Mills show an indication of the reluctance of Professor Mills to accept the media reportage of what was attributed to President Rawlings at the Agona Swedru rally on 6 June 1998. The reader is not told by the author that the former Information, and National Security Minister, Kofi Totobi-Quakyi, corrected Professor Mills’ misunderstanding of what President Rawlings said exactly at Agona Swedru rally. The assumption is that no correction was made.

Kwamena Ahwoi and his cohort of puppet masters for whom he confesses that: “if President Rawlings had discussed the matter with any or all of the three of us, we would have supported it, anyway” were definitely happy with the media mis-reportage or their media orchestration of what President Rawlings said at Agona Swedru. Their past conduct, from my association with them in the handling of other government businesses, convinces me that they might even have been instrumental in dictating the media reportage. But the inalienable right of Professor Mills, to freely decide whether to contest the 2000 presidential elections, from what Rawlings said in fact, depended largely on the self-interest and opportunistic aspirations of these puppet masters who suppressed the real facts from coming to his knowledge.

I personally have no doubt that Professor Mills was not keen to be the next president, and he would have rejected the offer made by President Rawlings if the decision to contest the 2000 presidential election was left to him and his dear wife to make. Unfortunately, the circumstances that thrust him into the vice presidency made him a captive of the interests of the dominant and deep state political elite actors within the NDC who saw him as a mere tool for the achievement of their goals. The portrayal of Professor Mills as having deferred to the offer made by President Rawlings at Agona Swedru is a disingenuous attempt to undermine the will power and independence of Professor Mills. It was intended to hide the self-interest of the powerful deep state political elite players to whom Professor Mills had unwittingly mortgaged his political future when he accepted to be the 1996 vice presidential candidate.

The mentality of these deep state political elite power players was exposed in the confession by the author himself and on behalf of his cohort puppeteers supporting the so-called “Swedru Declaration” which the author knew was no declaration from Rawlings but a mere offer. Nothing could, therefore, have stood in their way in goading Professor Mills gradually towards making the final decision to contest the 2000 elections on behalf of the NDC. I saw their antics in full operation when I became the running mate to Professor Mills at the 2000 presidential elections. They stopped at nothing during the 2000 presidential campaign to impose their selfish will upon Professor Mills who naively trusted them.

The NDC Ho Congress and Coronation
The doubting Thomas’s will do well to carefully read the narrative of Kwamena Ahwoi about the so called “Ho Coronation” on 29 April 2000 and the ingratiating words he caused to be inserted into Professor Mills’ acceptance speech. The uncalled for insertion by the author, Kwamena Ahwoi, of those words into an already prepared and vetted speech were intended to show the politically naïve Vice President’s gratitude to President Rawlings for his offer of support at Agona Swedru. That inexperienced insertion of those words at the behest of Kwamena Ahwoi doomed beyond repair the whole of the subsequent campaign of Professor Mills for the Presidency.

The author, Kwamena Ahwoi, tried to use Working with Rawlings to re-write the history of the events of the period to distance his cohort of puppet masters and him from the decision by the NDC to endorse and acclaim Professor Mills as the NDC’s presidential candidate for the 2000 election. The author attempts the same feat for the choice of the theme for the Ho Congress of: “Continuity in Change”. He did not succeed in his enterprise of fabricating the data and evidence to support his intentions.

The decision by the NDC to endorse and acclaim Professor Mills as the NDC’s presidential candidate for the 2000 election could not have been made by the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the NDC if Professor Mills had not voluntarily or through the pressure of his puppet masters indicated an unconditional acceptance of the offer made to him by President Rawlings to contest for the 2000 elections. Having been accepted by the NEC of the NDC as its sole Presidential candidate for acclamation at the Ho Congress, Professor Mills and his puppet masters were deeply involved in the choice of the Congress theme of: “Continuity in Change”. The author exhibited the highest degree of hypocrisy and double speak when as part of the gang of three which included the National Security Ministry and the government apparatus controlled by them, he had the temerity to say, with tongue-in- cheek, that unlike the decision to bring Professor Mills on board as the NDC Vice

Presidential candidate in 1996 , the decision to make him the presidential candidate for the 2000 elections was not subject to democratic discussion at the party leadership level.

The author developed sudden amnesia and wished away his earlier narrative that within hours of Professor Mills’ acceptance to be Jerry Rawlings’ running mate in the author’s office at the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, celebrations took place with Club beer. As the author narrated the events, they were waiting for the arrival of “… Nana Ato Dadzie, the Chief of Staff to President Rawlings and Tsatsu Tsikata with the nomination forms in which President Rawlings had filled his personal details as required by the Electoral Commission. Professor Mills took the forms and duly completed his portion (See pages 122 to 123 of the book).” By the author’s own narrative, the candidature of Professor Mills as President Rawlings’ running mate was finalized when “Professor Mills took the forms and duly completed his portion” as the running mate to President Rawlings.

The next steps to give an appearance of democratic endorsement to the fait accompli was to summon the so-called Chapel Group meeting for a Sunday afternoon for a formal announcement of Professor Mills as the selected running mate for the 1996 election. The post facto processes which the Goebbels’ of the NDC orchestrated after Professor Mills had already completed his portion of the registration forms for the elections cannot by any stretch of semantics be called a democratic process or discussion at the level of the leadership of the NEC of the NDC for the selection of the candidate for running mate in 1996 presidential elections. It was an imposition spearheaded by the author, Kwamena Ahwoi, in his Ministry of Local Government office, clear and simple.

There was no difference between how Professor Mills was identified and compelled to fill his portion of the Electoral Commission forms as running mate to President Rawlings in the author’s office, and the orchestrations and willy dilly undertaken by the known puppet masters of Professor Mills when they eventually got him to agree to contest the 2000 presidential elections. The author from his narrative in Working with Rawlings comes out as the chief puppet master of Professor Mills who with his cohort of puppeteers exploited the trust Mills placed in them for being the harbinger of his unexpected rise to the Vice Presidency. This is consistent with the conviction of cadres of the 31 December Revolution in 2000 that they were the alter ego of the NEC in deciding the Ho Congress theme of “Continuity in Change”. The so-called coronation of Professor Mills on 29 April 2000 at the NDC Extraordinary Congress at Ho was similarly perceived by cadres of the 31 December Revolution as having been concluded by the NEC with Mills’ puppeteers as the alter ego of the decision. Support for the pivotal role played by the known puppet masters of Professor Mills in the organization of the Ho Congress is contained in Professor Mills’ acceptance speech which Kwamena Ahwoi and Kofi Totobi-Quakyi confess that they had worked on.

Kwamena Ahwoi confessed that in response to President Rawlings speech where he had said that: ‘When I retire in 2001, I am not going anywhere. I will stay here with you in Ghana.”, the chief puppet master, Kwamena Ahwoi, knowing that Mills will listen to him, quickly scribbled on a piece of paper that: ‘At the appropriate point in your speech reply to Rawlings: “When you retire in 2001, we will not allow you to go anywhere because we will come knocking at your door morning, noon and night.”’ And had the note passed on Professor Mills on the platform who duly uttered those words of his chief puppet master.

I will quote the introductory words of Kwamena Ahwoi in his Working with Rawlings at the second paragraph of page 150 on the note he had passed on to Professor Mills which puts

beyond any reasonable doubt the contention of how the puppet masters exercised absolute control over their politically naïve ward. He wrote that after Rawlings’ speech:

“I saw an opportunity. Totobi-Quakyi and I had worked on Professor Mills’ Congress speech so I knew Mills would listen to me. I quickly scribbled on a piece of paper: ‘At an appropriate time in your speech, reply Rawlings: ‘ ’”

One of the basic rules I learned in my practice as legal practitioner rising to the position of a Deputy Attorney General who was specifically instructed by the PNDC, and Rawlings’ NDC 1, and 2 regimes to represent those Governments in the Courts is that a good lawyer must never accept suggestions from colleagues at the bar on the spur of the moment when he is not in position to soberly digest the implications of those suggestions. Professor Mills, an enrolled lawyer, so trusted Kwamena Ahwoi as his chief puppet master and political guru that on the spur of the moment he threw caution to the wind and read the note passed over to him with the possible endorsement by Kofi Totobi-Quakyi. The conduct of the author and his cohorts also underscored the double agency of Professor Mills’ puppeteers in attempting to serve two masters at the same time and contributing in no small measure to removing the credibility of President Mills as a person capable of holding his own grounds as President of Ghana. It casts Professor Mills not only as a poodle to President Rawlings but also to his puppet masters.

Kwamena Ahwoi and his cohort of puppet masters cannot escape blame for their immense influence on the Political Oversight Committee of Government of the NDC and Functional Executive Committee (FEC) of the NDC in the decision by the National Executive Committee (NEC) that Professor Mills should be “endorsed” by the NEC and “acclaimed” at the Ho Congress as the party’s presidential candidate. Those of us who were party to the meetings of the Political Committee of the Government witnessed the modus operandi and activities of the puppet masters in shaping the gradual process for the consummation of the Ho Coronation.

The foregoing critique has examined, analyzed, and assessed the author’s narrative on the alleged “Swedru Declaration”, and the 2000 NDC Congress held at Ho for the Coronation of Professor Mills as its presidential candidate and their contributory effect on the politics of the succession to President Rawlings. This critique is intended to empower and enable the reader of Working with Rawlings to make a holistic assessment of the author’s narrative to appreciate the fabricated facts used to construct his self-serving narrative as the hero of the political succession process. The reader can then appreciate that Kwamena Ahwoi who holds himself out in Working with Rawlings as an erudite academic, scholar, and Professor of Law exposed his competences and standing in academia by the use of unethically concocted facts and evidence along with muddled reasoning in arriving at his self-gloating conclusions.

Martin A. B. K. Amidu 21 May 2023