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15.11.2008 Feature Article

Professor K. Danso Boafo Got It All Wrong.

I refer to Professor K.Danso Boafo's reaction to my earlier rejoinder in repudiating some inaccuracies and distortions in an article titled: "Akufo Addo Homecoming Rally Is Bogus". The said piece was submitted by one, Sammy Osei Tashman, an aspiring NDC MP who wanted to count his chickens before they were hatched by referring to himself as "NDC member of Parliament for Abuakwa South Constituency". This was given wide coverage in some newspapers and Ghanaweb.

My initial reaction had been to keep mute and let matters rest. But on sober reflection, I realised I would be doing a great deal of injustice to Ghanaians if I failed to state the facts the way they are. Professor Danso Boafo is somebody I respect a lot and I would not like to tackle issues with him. We have interracted at the personal level before. I remember asking him how he got appointed as Minister in Rawlings' cabinet and the answer he gave was very revealing. My respect for him at that point knew no bounds. But when something borders on one's own integrity, one has to go all out to ensure that truth prevails.

The learned Professor had written that the purpose of my submission was to score cheap political points. My reaction to that accusation is A BIG NO.

He stated that he was the last Minister of Health in the NDC regime. In fact he gave the period as between 2000 -2001. Agreed. He also stated that during this period an amount of $7million was sourced to renovate and expand the Kibi District Hospital. I don't doubt him on that and so there is no reason for me to enquire from the Okyenhene or any other person on that matter. Okyeman and the people in the community are grateful to the Government for that gesture.

But my question is, what was the state of the Hospital before he assumed office as Minister of Health? The NDC regime did not span only the period between 2000 and January 6, 2001. The party had been in power since 1993, not to talk of the PNDC days. And as we all know, Professor Danso Boafo was not the only Minister of Health to hold office during the entire duration of NDC reign.

My piece was in reaction to what the NDC Parliamentary Candidate, who styles himself as "the NDC MP for Abuakwa South", Sammy Osei Tashman had written: " The Kibi District Hospital is witnessing deplorable conditions in material, personal and monetary resources. The countless number of pleas asking Akufo Addo to grant audience to the Hospital Mangement Team to deliberate on how best the problem can be resolved have yielded no positive response". That was the way Sammy Osei Tashman saw things.

But I am happy that Professor Danso Boafo has, in his reaction debunked Tashman's claims that the hospital is in a deplorable situation. In attempting to refute my assertion, he ended up acclaiming the NPP regime and Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo for doing a lot for the Hospital. He wrote: "The Kyebi Hospital mortuary was so efficient then ans is so efficient now, that it ittracts corpses from across the country. Thank you , Prof for your candid assessment. What then was the purpose of Tashman's baseless allegations?

The learned Professor went on to "blow his horns" when he stated, " I arranged for Kwame Danso [Fu Man Chu] who you claim to have been neglected by the NDC to have his children treated free of charge at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospita. Your assertion that Kwame Danso left the NDC because of neglect is therefor false.

Now, juxtapose the above statement with that of Tashman and you cannot help but conclude

that NDC members speak from both sides of the mouth.

In the first place, would it have been necessary to arrange for the treatment of Kwame Dansoh's children at Korle-Bu if the Kibi Hospital was as efficient as Professor Danso Boafo wants us to believe? What sort of treatment/ medication could not be given at the Hospital if indeed it had been equipped to required standard? Or did he want to create a new type of elite in Kwame Danso?

Can it be said that the Kibi District Hospital is now more efficient, better equipped than it was during his tenure as Health Minister? I am not doubting the Professor's integrity. May be at the time he held sway as Master of all that he surveyed at the Health Ministry, he felt he had done all that needed to be done for the Hospital.

The next question. Upon what premise did he arrange for Kwame Danso's children to have free medical treatment at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital? Was it on account of his membership of the NDC? What about other less fortunate individuals, both within and outside the community, not to talk about other parts of the country?

Can Professor Danso-Boafo be graceful enough to tell us the real reason why Kwame Danso crossed carpet to join the NPP? If it was not neglect, then what else? Ghanaians deserve to know. The learned Professor should tell us if a man of sane mind and old enough to father children would jump from a "friendly" ship into an "unfriendly" one. A toad does not run in the daytime for nothing, we shouldn't forget.

Professor Danso-Boafo wrote, "if you want Ghana to move forward, we must do so in truth and honesty." I will also admonish him to do the same. "Otherwise, join the 'change' bandwagon", he concluded. Yes , Change is a necessary end and it will come when it will. However, we have to ask ourselves, 'Change at what cost?" Merely asking for change without offering any positive sense of direction would be an exercise in futility.

In conclusion I wish to state that there are some things over which man has no control, and there are some things over which man has been alloted a certain degree of control. One of such things has to do with the selection of our political leaders. Would you rather a wolf came in a sheep clothing to tell you things which will make you lose your guard and in such helpless situation pounce on you? The other alternative will be the person looking straight into your eye to tell you the truth the way it is? These are the two options before you. Choose Mills and Rawlings and go back to the era of intimidation, torture, kidnapping, assassinations, lies and hardship or Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and Mahamudu Bawumia and enjoy all the good things the country has in store for you.

We are indeed moving forward. Would you join us in our forward movement? You won't regret if you did.

Daniel Danquah Damptey
[email protected]
0243715297

Daniel Damptey Danquah
Daniel Damptey Danquah, © 2008

This author has authored 286 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: DanielDampteyDanquah

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