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24.12.2009 Politics

From the communication director Koku Anyidohu To Lordina’s Office Blues

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Does the fact that one man insults another mean that it should be used as justification by another person to insult others?

There is a certain line of debate going on in this country concerning the Koku Anyidohu/Privileges Committee affair that I find rather intriguing. Some people, mainly those aligned to the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and people who profess to be friends of Koku Anyidohu, have been saying that he should not apologize to members of parliament for describing them as an 'irresponsible lot'. They say so because, according to them some members of parliament have insulted other people in the past and had not apologized for so doing!

I find this type of argument rather strange. If we admit that it was wrong for the MPs to have insulted fellow Ghanaians in the past, then we also admit that it was wrong of Anyidohu to have insulted MPs. If we insist that the MPs should have apologized for insulting their fellow Ghanaians, then we should also admit that Anyidohu should apologize for insulting MPs. In my opinion, therefore Anyidohu should apologize, simply because the case at hand is not that of the MPs which happened in the past, but is that of Anyidohu, which happened just last week. He cannot say that he would not apologize merely because others did not apologize for their transgressions in the past. He cannot say that he should be allowed to go away with his own transgressions because others got away with it in the past. If he says that, it would be illogical!

Anyway, I find it interesting that there can be a debate about this matter. Mr. Anyidohu is the Head of Communications at the seat of the presidency, headed by President Atta Mills, who claims that he is a man of peace. If the President were really a man of peace, he would have told his man Anyidohu to apologize and to stop describing MPs as irresponsible people. The president's long silence on this matter tells me one thing; he supports what Anyidohu said. In fact, he has been highly supportive of all the atrocious statements that have issued forth from the mouth of the despicable Anyidohu over the months and years. As the Akans say, show me your friend and I would show you your character. If Anyidohu is a good friend of the President, and Anyidohu keeps on behaving in this atrocious manner without being censured by the President, then it means that the President supports him. In fact, they have the same character traits. Show me your friend, they say, and I will show you your character. Anyidohu is the President's friend. Vide; we know the President's character!

Enough on Anyidohu and his friend John Evans Atta Mills! I am sure that they deserve each other! I wish them luck! They should continue with their antics, insulting everybody under the sky! I hope it ends well for them!

Towards the end of last week, The Daily Searchlight publish a publication on the new office accommodation that the government had found for our 2nd Lady, Mrs Lordina Mahama. Personally speaking, I am not opposed to the 2nd Lady of our republic being offered a place where she can do official and semi-official work. I think it is a progressive step, but I also think that this matter raises several issues of principle.

To begin with, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) party campaigned on a platform of cutting down cost in government because according to them, the then New Patriotic Party (NPP) government was ostentatious and profligate in its expenditure!

I do not think that it is acceptable that a government that came to power preaching ostentation has the right to go about handing around refurbished state bungalows as if there is no tomorrow, particularly when the so-called profligate government of the NPP did not give a bungalow to its 2nd Lady, Mrs. Aliu Mahama. By giving a bungalow to Lordina, which obviously would have to be maintained by the state, the NDC is imposing additional cost on the people of Ghana.

Secondly, there are issues of fairness. We know for a fact that the NDC government kicked out President Kufuor from using another stare bungalow as an office. President Kufuor is still a public official, whilst Lordina is not. She just happens to be married to the current Vice President, and is not recognized as a direct charge on our constitution. Unlike her, President Kufuor is recognized as a direct charge on the Constitution. There is no earthly reason why President Kufuor should be denied the use of an office by the state, the same state that has found one for Lordina Mahama!

But since the Daily Searchlight put out that publication, other issues have come up, among which is the claims by John Jinapor, the Spokesperson to Vice President John Mahama, that the building was renovated by the Mahama family. I find that claim intriguing for a simple reason. Would the government of Ghana assign an official bungalow for the use of the 2nd Lady without furnishing it? That surely would be strange!

Concluding, I would say that it is amazing how some people seem to have such short memories. A few years back, a private individual said that he had given over money to assist President Kufuor renovate his house. All hell broke loose because people thought it had the potential to corrupt the President. Are we saying today that the Mahama family can use their private funds for public purposes?

In any case, according to John Jinapor, the woman needs the office for her private NGO. I ask, if the NGO is private, why doesn't she go secure a private office?

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