Stop Jiving, Mr. Segbefia
Until the key operatives of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) boldly and frankly come to terms with the obvious reason for their massive defeat in the 2016 general election, they will continue to languish on the margins of opposition politics for the foreseeable future. One such key operative who refuses to accept the reality of the truth is Mr. Alexander Segbefia, the former Mahama Health Minister.
The former UK/Ireland Chairman of the National Democratic Congress has been widely reported to be blaming the expansion of the party’s Electoral College for the defeat of the NDC in last December’s polls (See “Expansion of Electoral College Cost NDC Elections – Alex Segbefia” MyJoyOnline.com / Modernghana.com 5/29/17).
If such logic has validity, then it goes without saying that the now-ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) ought to have been handily defeated by the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress, because the Akufo-led New Patriotic Party has the largest Electoral College membership of any major political party in the country, about twice or thrice the size of the NDC’s Electoral College. According to Mr. Segbefia, an expanded NDC’s Electoral College enabled those with wealth and the wherewithal to buy their candidacy at the expense of those who actually had the interests of the grassroots of the party at heart.
Actually, what may be more accurate is that the movers-and-shakers of the NDC may have jampacked the party’s Electoral College with people who did not accurately represent the interests and aspirations of the Ghanaian people at large. You see, the Rawlings-founded NDC is decidedly an authoritarian political machine that has no genuine track-record of forging and fostering democratic accountability. We all witnessed this at the party’s congressional primary level, when Mr. George Boateng, the former Oyarifa, Greater-Accra, Constituency Organizer of the NDC, picked up his nomination forms to contest then-President John Dramani Mahama for the party’s topmost ticket.
It is also quite clear that Mr. Segbefia well knows that both then-incumbent President Mahama and the party lost last December’s election because of gross administrative incompetence and the abjectly poor management of our national economy. On the latter count, this is what the 2008 Campaign Manager for the late President John Evans Atta-Mills has to say: “We are not in an area where we haven’t been before, so I have no qualms about it. I think the Ghanaian electorate, in some way, has become more sophisticated and will punish you more for your time in office if you are not able to deliver what you [sic] require.” Actually, the tail-end of the latter sentence ought to read: “what they require of you.” But, of course, every avid observer of Ghanaian politics over the last two decades knows fully well that Ghanaian voters have always been “sophisticated” enough to know exactly what sort of leadership they want, and need, at the helm of their affairs.
The fact of the matter is that the National Democratic Congress never won any election in the country that wasn’t thoroughly rigged, including bribing citizens of our neighboring countries to cross our borders and blindly vote for the NDC. In sum, the NDC lost Election 2016 because the key operatives of the New Patriotic Party were more vigilant this time around, even as the NDC’s own longest-reigning General-Secretary, Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, publicly acknowledged in the aftermath of the 2012 presidential election.
What the preceding means is that as the key operatives of the NPP become even more electorally vigilant and tech-savvy, the NDC is apt to lose more and more elections in the offing. Statistically speaking, expanding their Electoral College ought to have assured the NDC operatives of the real position of their party with the general Ghanaian electorate, not the reverse, as Mr. Segbefia would have the party’s members, supporters and sympathizers believe.
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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
May 29, 2017
E-mail: [email protected]
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