It is all to be expected when former President John Dramani Mahama says that he has absolutely no confidence in the professional competence, integrity and credibility of the Jean Adukwei Mensa-led Electoral Commission (See “NPP [sic] Adomako Baafi Lambast[s] Mahama” Modernghana.com 5/24/19). Yes, it ought to be clear to the former Acting Director of Communications of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) that for most of the country’s Fourth-Republican Dispensation, two of the three chairpersons of the Electoral Commission (EC) that have so far been appointed were appointed by leaders of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), including former President John Dramani Mahama, the man who is now bitterly and outrageously complaining about the administrative and professional competence of unarguably the best qualified and most constitutionally experienced and competent of all three Electoral Commissioners who have, thus far, headed the most sensitive democratic institution in the country.
You see, the NDC’s leaders have gotten perennially used to having their way with the manner in which elections are run or conducted in the country – remember, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, the first Electoral Commissioner of Ghana’s Fourth Republic, headed the EC for more than two decades, during most of which period the National Democratic Congress run the country. Dr. Afari-Gyan would be lavishly honored and rewarded by then President Mahama for facilitating the much-maligned and controversial Mahama victory in the 2012 Presidential Election, an election that was apologetically described by Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia as a win by default. According to the longest-reigning General-Secretary of the National Democratic Congress, it was the abject lack of vigilance on the part of Akufo-Addo polling agents and observers that decided the scandalous outcome of Election 2012.
And now, not surprisingly, the likes of Messrs. Mahama and Asiedu-Nketia are running scared because for the first time in more than two decades, the authority of appointing the Chief Returning Officer of the country’s Electoral Commission has shifted from leadership of the National Democratic Congress to the leadership of the New Patriotic Party. This is the crux of the entire strategically staged cynicism by the leaders of the National Democratic Congress. The Mahama Posse knows full well that it has absolutely no fighting chance in the 2020 General Election. There is absolutely neither any streak of hypocrisy nor a mischievous attempt to “bastardize” the integrity of the staff of the Electoral Commission. It is simply an integral part of the “Boot-for-Boot” intimidation tactics of the Mahama Posse; but, Dear Reader, trust me, this primitive electioneering campaign strategy has absolutely no chance of success.
It won’t wash, as I have said time and time again, because like the 2016 General Election, next year’s election is bound to be a stiff contest between the performance track-records of both the ruling New Patriotic Party and the main opposition National Democratic Congress, in particular, the performance records of President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the latter’s immediate predecessor and globally infamous Architect of Dumsor, to wit, former President John Dramani Mahama. So, rather than wax unwisely apologetic and jittery about the patently vacuous tantrum of Mr. Mahama, NPP stalwarts like Mr. Yaw Adomako Baafi ought to be busily conducting public surveys and opinion polls and playing up the strengths and some of the most significant achievements of the Akufo-Addo Administration.
By the same token, it would be far better for the likes of Mr. Adomako Baafi to be assessing some of the socioeconomic and other policy initiative shortfalls of the Akufo-Addo Administration, heading into Election 2020, and swiftly and strenuously figure out ways and means of tightening the proverbial loose-ends. And yes, Mr. Adomako Baafi is right to observe that former President Mahama is tactically and deviously trying desperately to manipulate members of the senior staff and administrators of the Electoral Commission to mischievously and facilely throw the dice in his favor at all costs. But, of course, this is a grossly misguided mission and strategy that is surely bound to fail. Indeed, it ought to be crystal clear to the Mahama Posse, by now, that Ghanaians are too progressively savvy to have this double-salary guzzling payola-prone rascal and his acolytes and minions take them for a long, risky ride once more in the wilderness of woeful and egregious underperformance.
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
May 24, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]
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