I am hereby commenting on the opinion piece titled “One Man’s Cathedral, Another Man’s Corruption” (Ghanaweb.com 9/28/19) about 48 hours after reading the same. So readers may pardon me if I omit any aspects of the several issues raised by the author-critic, Mr. Harruna Attah, in the process of this rejoining disquisition. First of all, I had not quite realized, as the critic, a practicing Muslim, pontifically and disdainfully claims, that the proposal for the widely discussed construction of the National Cathedral by President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, had been “furtively” tucked onto the bottom of a list of proposed development projects that the President had allegedly sent to Parliament to be deliberated upon; so the critic, assuming that he has some modicum of credibility in his claim, may be quite right to take exception to the same.
The problem here, however, is the critic’s characterization of the way in which the presentation of the proposed project was made to Parliament as one that is tantamount to a veritable act of “corruption,” especially when all along Nana Akufo-Addo has clearly not hidden the fact of the construction of the proposed National Cathedral from public knowledge and awareness, as the fruit of a promise that the President made to God/Divine Providence in the leadup to the 2016 Presidential Election. Now, Dear Reader, compare the preceding with the patent illegality that was the decision by then-President John Dramani Mahama to collusively collaborate with the Department of Islamic Religion of the Turkish Government to construct a National Mosque in Accra, Ghana, in the Cantoments section of our capital, as I vividly recall, with a sizeable component of funding for the project non-consensually taken from the Ghanaian taxpayer’s wallet, purse or pocketbook, as Americans are wont to say, by a self-professing Christian Mr. Mahama, and it begins to be crystal clear who the “genuinely corrupt” one is between Messrs. Akufo-Addo and Mahama.
Matters are made even more bizarre, if also more corrupt, if the latter adjective were to be legally permitted to be used in the case of the former President. You see, Dear Reader, in the case of the former National Democratic Congress’ Member of Parliament for the Gonja-West Constituency, in the Akufo-Addo-created Savannah Region, the collaborators in the construction of the National Mosque with the then-President John Dramani Mahama was an officially and globally recognized Muslim country. We are also talking about a predominantly Christian Democratic Republic of Ghana, a country in which at least 71-percent of the population – the figure could actually be higher in real cultural terms – identify themselves as Christians.
Now, what the treacherous Mahama decision to collusively and collaboratively construct the National Mosque with the Turkish Government was clearly tantamount to was an indisputable Fifth-Column declaration of war against Ghanaian Christians by Mr. Mahama with the assistance of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey. It was a declaration of war because Ghana’s Fourth-Republican Constitution categorically stipulates the Separation of Church – read Religion – from the State, which means that under absolutely no circumstances ought the Government become an active participant in the promotion of the values and/or tenets of any officially recognized religious establishment in the country. We need to also highlight the fact that Mr. Mahama, who clearly sports what sounds like a Muslim name, is actually a self-professing Christian by faith and practice, although the man is also publicly known to spend some of his Christmas vacations in the predominantly Muslim city of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, and elsewhere in the predominantly Muslim Middle East, and not in Judeo-Christian Israel, for example.
We need to also point out the fact that Mr. Mahama’s collusive and collaborative construction of the National Mosque received prominent play in at least one well-known Muslim-oriented newspaper in the country, namely, the “Al-Hajj” newspaper that until his death, was regularly published by the passionately partisan National Democratic Congress’ propagandist, Alhaji Iddrisu Bature. Like the latter, Mr. Harruna Attah is also a Muslim with the globally recognized Islamic Hajj-conferred title of “Alhaji” often prefixed to his name as an honorific; so it is very significant to note the fact that in this particular instance of his rather obnoxiously self-righteous tirade against President Akufo-Addo, the Editor-Publisher of the long-defunct Accra Daily Mail newspaper conveniently decided not to prefix his name with the Muslim honorific of “Alhaji.”
I suppose omitting his title of “Alhaji” was a way to deftly and conveniently hide the fact that Mr. Harruna Attah is a hardnosed pro-Mahama Muslim political propagandist and a shamelessly promiscuous political opportunist. He may quickly riposte that his longtime wife is Christian by persuasion, as if this very fact in of itself readily countervails any attempt to justifiably stick him with the label of the patently unprincipled political opportunist that he veritably is. I also wanted to add the fact that diehard Muslim partisans like Mr. Harruna Attah continue to enjoy a field day in their relentless bashing of Nana Akufo-Addo on the National Cathedral issue because the Christian partisans in the raging National Cathedral Debate, for the most part, have absolutely no idea that former President John Dramani Mahama once collaborated with the Islamic Government of Turkey to construct a National Mosque right here in Accra.
We are reliably informed, by the “Al-Hajj” newspaper, that even the decorative stones for the construction of the National Mosque were directly imported from Turkey. Now, Mr. Alhaji “Attah,” let’s talk about hypocrisy and real corruption.
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
September 30, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]