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25.03.2009 Politics

AFAG calls Mills a 'hypocrite' For appointing 'tribalist' Chairman of Council Of State

By The Statesman

The appointment as Chairman of the Council of State, an intellectual, who is known for his naked tribalism, preaching hate among Ghana's ethnic groups, has been criticised by a civil society group, Alliance for Accountable Governance.

At its press conference Tuesday, AFAG accused President JEA Mills as a 'hypocrite" for making Kofi Awoonor the head of his constitutional advisory team - the Council of State. It has called for his appointment to be revoked for the sake of national unity.

"This is a man, whose book, 'The Ghanaian Revolution' and utterances have been divisive and often incited one ethnic group against the other,' says Sammy Awuku, who spoke for AFAG.

Prof Awoonor is on record as the nation"s leading tribalist, who in his widely circulated book, claims that he is Ewe first and Ghanaian second.

The 2008 campaign strategy of the National Democratic Congress, led by Prof Mills, has been condemned for bringing the country close to an ugly ethno-political war.

The kind of hate propaganda that the NDC pushed, especially between Ashantis and Ewes during the elections, is just what Prof Awoonor is notorious for professorially promoting.

Prof Awoonor sees the Ewes as "an effective check on Ashanti effort at hegemony.'The 2008 campaign strategy of the National Democratic Congress, led by Prof Mills, has been condemned for bringing the country close to an ugly ethno-political war.

The kind of hate propaganda that the NDC pushed, especially between Ashantis and Ewes during the elections, is just what Prof Awoonor is notorious for professorially promoting. Prof Awoonor sees the Ewes as 'an effective check on Ashanti effort at hegemony.'

At page 57 of his book, 'The Ghanaian Revolution', Prof Awoonor seeks to justify why, in his calculation, 'Ewes in the Armed Forces have achieved the reputation of being the notorious coup makers and plotters against successive governments.'

He ascribed this, in part, to Ewes seeing 'themselves in opposition to all governments in Ghana, which inevitably become Akan (Ashanti) dominated.'

 He continues, 'The contest for power is reduced in simple terms to a fierce contest between the Akan (Ashanti) and the Ewes.'

AFAG, which questions Prof Mills' mantra of being 'President for all',  sees the appointment to the Council of State of a man who represents the dangerous intellectualisation  of tribalism as a threat to the kind of unity and tolerance necessary for the nation's stability and development.

The group is therefore calling on President Mills to review the appointment of Awoonor as Chairman of the Council of State, the nation's most revered body of statesmen and senior citizens, if the President believes in a strong, unified Ghana, free of vindictiveness and hate. 

According to AFAG, at this point in the nation's history, it is too dangerous contradictory to have a personality like Prof Awoonor to be in charge of a body that has an unambiguous mandate to unify the nation for progress.

AFAG is also calling on the Legislature to intervene in removing Prof Awoonor from the position and replace him with a non-tribalist who can be trusted to 'foster a spirit of loyalty to the State that over-rides ethnic, sectional and other loyalties.'

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