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23.04.2007 Politics

Rawlings lets loose Victor Smith

By D Guide
Rawlings lets loose Victor Smith

There is now ample indication that the former president, Jerry John Rawlings has let loose Mr. Victor Smith, his special aide, on Minority Members of Parliament (MPs) for their perceived inability to 'overthrow' President Kufuor before the 2008 elections.

Last week, Smith went on air, and on a virtual rampage, lambasted the MPs from the opposition National Democracy Congress (NDC).

Calling the MPs names, he accused them of receiving bribe from the government besides being influenced by the Ministry of National Security.

However, in a sharp rebuttal at the weekend, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) issued a statement dissociating itself from the comments of Mr. Smith on an Accra-based radio station, which called for the impeachment of President Kufuor.

Victor Smith, who the former President had earlier served notice he would unleash on the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) because of the presumed non-effectiveness of the NDC executives and Minority in Parliament, is gunning for the impeachment of the President, as well as dreaming of becoming a parliamentarian.

According to him, his desire was based on Article 59 of the Constitution, and he had observed the Minority in Parliament was so comfortable with the favours in Parliament that it was shirking its responsibilities to the people of Ghana.

To him, the President had committed a number of blunders which were impeachable by the Minority MPs but which they were not doing.

Last Saturday, panellists on Joy FMs' News File also described Rawlings as a frustrated man whose attitude depicted the shallow depth of his understanding of how constitutional democracy worked and what it took to be in opposition.

The panellists, who were led by his tormentor-in-chief, Kwaku Baako Jnr, as well the Editor-In-Chief of the Crusading Guide; Gabby Otchere Darko, Editor-In-Chief of the Statesman; Haruna Idriss, NDC MP for Tamale South and Kofi Owusu, host of the programme.

While Mr. Baako and Mr. Otchere Darko were uncharitable with Mr. Rawlings, Mr. Idriss stayed clear of any comments that would be construed to be an attack on his boss.

According to Baako, Rawlings' attack on the NDC MPs was uncalled for since the Minority NDC MPs had performed creditably well ever since they went into opposition.

“What does he want Haruna and co to do? How aggressively does he want them to oppose the ruling government?” he querried.

Mr. Baako stated that the NDC was incapacitated by its limited number in Parliament and therefore did not wield enough power to have its way.

“The only thing he wants is to be seeing his party opposing anything from the government for the sake of opposing,” Mr. Baako observed.

Mr. Baako was of the view that Rawlings' comments during the NDC's “Family Meeting” that suggested Prof. Mills was not up to the task, was undermining the party's choice for the 2008 Presidential election.

He described Victor Smith as someone who used his freedom of speech to spew “nonsense” and “rubbish”.

His call for the impeachment of President Kufuor was an exhibition of gross ignorance and frustration since impeaching the President was not only a Herculean task; it was unachievable as well by the Minority, he noted.

Mr. Baako made reference to the $5 million the late Nigerian leader, Gen. Sani Abacha was alleged to have given Rawlings, but which case was treated as mere newspaper allegation when it was brought before Parliament.

He referred also to the assault case the late Vice President Arkaah made against Rawlings, which was not investigated.

The Crusading Guide editor therefore stated that the 'Hotel Kufuor', 'Haruna Esseku Tape' and the 'Tetteh Quarshie' roundabout project did not merit impeachment since an important state institution like CHRAJ had ruled on the Hotel Kufuor saga and no substantial or evidential proof had been adduced to incriminate the President.

“It is shocking that the aide of a former President is speaking like this. He is only displaying his own frustration as well,” Mr. Baako stressed.

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