My dear cherished and lovely reader, please do me a favour by helping me to render and unqualified apology to Hon. Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto for referring to him as Dr. Osei Akoto when I wrote last week's epistle titled “Dr. Osei Akoto And Joseph the dreamer”. Sir, Accept my sincere apology. The same thing happened during the days of Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah when Krobo Edusei referred to Mr. James Owusu, the then Mayor of Kumasi as Mr. Victor Owusu. Fortunately for me, I referred to him as the Minister of Food and Agriculture. I am very sorry sir.
On a more serious note, something is happening in this country at the wrong side of majority of Ghanaians. The people of the Volta Region are highly peeved and only God knows how they can release their tensions. Since the inception of the 4th republic, these people have been voting for the NDC no matter how hard the NPP tried to convince them to change their pattern of voting and try the NPP- at least for once and see the difference, they continued to vote for the NDC. In 1992 when the late Professor Adu Boahen went there to campaign as the Presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, he was pelted with stones and the good old professor of history, had to quickly retreat to Accra, never to return to the region again. To the people of the Volta Region, they saw no reason why any Jupiter should have the courage to challenge Mr. Rawlings at his own backyard.
NPP billboards and posters were destroyed and Parliamentary candidates of the party had to run for cover. To the people of the Volta Region in those days it was a taboo to mention the name NPP.
They vented their anger at the NPP because according to them in 1979, candidate Victor Owusu referred to the people of the Volta Region as “tribalistic inward looking people” PNP used that as a campaign tool and used it to the disadvantage of the Popular front Party. As a result of that vile propaganda, the PNP won massively in the Volta Region. In 1992 when the ban of party politics was lifted, the UP tradition formed the New Patriotic Party and chose the late Professor Adu Boahen as their presidential candidate.
When the intimidation and bullying became unbearable, the NPP boycotted the 1992 presidential election and chose to write the “Stolen Verdict” which cataloged the various anomalies in the elections. Then the party bided its time and worked so hard to propose certain changes which were accepted by the international community. When Mr. Kufuor won the presidential candidate at the Sunyani National Delegates' Congress, he immediately set out to mend fences with the people of the Volta Region. In fact, because of his approach to the issue, he was able to win some votes in the Volta Region. Again when the “Gentle Giant” was pushed into the arena in 2000 the NPP votes in the Volta Region appreciated reasonably. As a token of his appreciation to the people of the Volta Region, the first appointment Mr. Kufuor made was Madam Elizabeth Ohene as a Minister of State at the presidency.
Today the Volta Region which used to be called the World Bank of the NDC has been shoved aside by Mr. Mahama and his cohorts. People who know Mr. Mahama very well will tell you that he never forgives when he is offended. In his attempt to pay Mr. Rawlings back in his own coin, he made sure Mr. Rawlings became unpopular among the rank and file of the NDC. He has refused to forgive Mr. Rawlings for continuously referring to his government as corrupt. At their last National Delegates Congress, Mr. Mahama and his gang made sure all 'Voltarians' who vied for top positions in the party were shoved aside and replaced by his chosen ones. As it stands now, the people of the Volta Region are no more a power to reckon with as far as the affairs of the NDC is concerned. Unlike the days gone by when 'Voltarians' in the party used to make noise; the likes of Koku Anyidoho, Dzifa Ativor, Fiifi Kwetey, Anita De Soso, Kofi Adam, and even Rawlings of all people; have kept silent and have refused to join Mr. Mahama in his bid to stage a comeback. It looks as if the die is cast and the centre cannot hold anymore as it used to be.
If Mr. Mahama thinks without the support of the people of the Volta Region he can win the 2020 elections, somebody out there should tell him that he is day dreaming. If, even, the people of the Volta Region decide to forgive him for treating them with contempt, Mr. Rawlings will still be a stumbling block between Mahama and his wild dream of becoming the president of Ghana again. The people of the Volta Region are like their northern counterparts. In fact, they are like the Kokonba people. They never forgive even though they may pretend to forget. What Mr. Mahama will try to do is to choose a running mate from the Volta Region and that too will be the worst scenario.
Are you telling me that the people of the Volta Region who love education so much will vote for a president who has sworn to scrap the free SHS? Or do you think if the bad roads which Mr. Mahama supervised and which Nana Addo has promised to fix, would escape the attention of the people of the Volta Region- who have suffered so much for so long a time? When the Voltarians stop playing their Borborbor and Agbadza you should know something has gone wrong. Indeed if the Voltarians decide to keep silent you better wear a crash helmet. Time will tell!!!
By Eric Bawah