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22.06.2009 Feature Article

Arthur Kennedy Justifies 1966 Coup

Arthur Kennedy Justifies 1966 Coup
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Sometimes you've got to hold your breath and jaw at the same time when you read about some unpardonable, silly and injudicious statements that some people who parade themselves as leading and unsuccessful presidential candidates spew out for the consumption of well-meaning Ghanaians.

Dr. Arthur Kennedy, who could not make any political traction in his run to become the NPP Flag-bearer in the 2008 elections, is another known political hack who spews out nonsense to the highest heavens. The other day he wrote an article in which he stated that his visiting daughter was very annoyed with the filth in Accra . Arthur Kennedy in that article tried to imply that the filth that has engulfed Accra suddenly emerged after the 2008 elections. But that is just that. Just hold your breath and hear Arthur Kennedy's latest hogwash.

Joy FM reported Arthur Kennedy as saying “the only coup in Ghana 's political history which can be justified is the 1966 one which toppled the country's first president.” In defending his reasons for such childish talk Arthur Kennedy told Joy FM's Mr. Oppong- Nkrumah that since President Nkrumah had turned Ghana into a one-party state and it was impossible to change government through the ballot box, the coup that put a brake on Ghana's move towards socio-economic advancement was therefore justified.

Arthur Kennedy who did not shut his long bloody mouth up went on further to state that apart from the 1966 coup all other coups in Ghana were not warranted. So Uncle Arthur is saying some coups are more equal than others. Four legs good two legs better. This is typical Animal Farm style. If Arthur Kennedy has the guts to say that President Nkrumah stifled democracy hence his removal from power then he should be able to tell Ghanaians what Busia did to warrant his removal from power too.

I know Arthur Kennedy does not have the spine to say something against his party member (Busia) for political expediency sake. But even apart from that since the 1966 coup was orchestrated by the United Party with active connivance from the US CIA headed at that time by ex-President George Bush (Snr.), there is no way Arthur Kennedy could have condemned it. Yet Arthur Kennedy found the guts to condemn those who removed Busia from power due to the corruption that reared its head in his administration.

Even though there were some excesses during President Nkrumah's rule, some of those who have delved deeply into Ghana 's political history at the time have come to the conclusion that it was the UP people who pushed Nkrumah to adopt some of the measures he did. Did Arthur Kennedy know that the UP people in their anxiety to see Nkrumah off even became modern-day terrorists by throwing bombs? And that when the bomb throwing failed to kill Nkrumah the UP people connived with the Americans who paid monies to some disgruntled army officers to remove Nkrumah who was elected to office by Ghanaians.

Is that the democracy Arthur Kennedy and his NPP want to preach to Ghanaians? That when you do not have the means to use the ballot box to remove a politica l opponent from power coup is the answer? This stupid statement by Arthur Kennedy has received no condemnation from the NPP political establishment who seem to be in agreement with what he said. Why would they not be since the 1966 coup paved the way for the Progress Party (PP) to come to power in 1969?

Fellow Ghanaians don't be deceived by the baloney talk that Busia won the 1969 elections in Ghana because the National Liberation Council (NLC) headed by General Afrifa at the time simply handed over power to the PP on a silver platter. Take it or leave it that elections were rigged. Period! The NLC could not have afforded the recriminations if they had conducted free and fair elections devoid of rigging which would have seen K.A. Gbedemah an Nkrumah protégé in power.

Because the NLC rigged the 1969 elections in favour of Arthur Kennedy's PP party, that is why he is happy to justify the terrible coup that brought the NLC to power. I am saddened by the fact that this medical doctor turned politician would not use his God given brains for the benefit of Ghanaians, but would go on air to justify the 1966 coup which saw the destruction of anything that bore the name of President Nkrumah at the time.

Even books bought with the country's scare resources that had Nkrumah's name in them were all burnt by the NLC whilst the UP people were cheering on. These are some of the things that the NPP people would not want Ghanaians who were not born at the time to know. But that is the truth. Just look at what they did to Ghana within just 8 years. Looting or grabbing galore. They grabbed anything that they laid hands on.

Sometimes when somebody criticizes all the time, it is good for you to give some responsibility to that person to see how he/she would perform. That is why it was good the NPP was given the mandate for Ghanaians to know what they could accomplish. Nobody is denying what they did. They did something and we applaud them. It was good. Given the international goodwill and monies provided to the Kufour's government, any government would have done what they did. But what the NPP failed to do was to have taken what they did a step further by using more of the monies given them by the international community for the benefit of Ghanaians. This is where many Ghanaians are faulting the NPP. They could have done more but decided to do just little and pocket the rest of the monies. They know that! And we all know that!

Life in opposition is not easy. You need to find something to say in order to stay in the news cycle all the time. It is necessary so that you are not forgotten by the electorate. That is why Arthur Kennedy and other NPP guys are trying desperately to find something to say everyday. But to tell you the truth most of the things they say are not what Ghanaians are looking to hear. Ghanaians are looking for the NPP to gear themselves up and tell the whole country that, “this is what we inherited, this is what we got from within and without, this is how much we spent and this is how much we left for Ghana .”

Crying wolf when there is not even a crawling snail would not cut it for the NPP people. The NPP people need to give account of their 8-year stewardship at one point in time. They should not think that they can bully their way through until the next elections. Ghanaians are politically awake so they should brace themselves up and provide answers that would tie the knots to certain questions about their stewardship. And the likes of Arthur Kennedy should find something good to talk about and not just try to make fools of themselves.

Take it or leave it Nkrumah's achievement can never be equaled or surpassed by any NPP member. Most of the things that Nkrumah did many, many decades ago are still being used by Ghanaians. And had it not been Nkrumah's vision of education for all, Arthur Kennedy may be stuck in his village today with no hope for a better future. So Arthur Kennedy, if you could read and write today, at least thank President Nkrumah.

By Ekua Kwansema

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Ekua Kwansema
Ekua Kwansema, © 2009

The author has 75 publications published on Modern Ghana. Column Page: EkuaKwansema

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