Mustapha Hameed (not: Dr. Mustapha Hamid), Zongo and Inner Cities Minister, could not have hit the bull's eye any better than he did with his social media admonition to the Zongo youth.
His deserving reaction was triggered by last week's busing of some youths from largely many Zongos in Kumasi to demonstrate against the compilation of a new voters' register.
With his outstanding knowledge of the Garden City's Zongo communities, his intelligence about how the recruitment of the youth for the NDC demonstration was carried out is impeccable. Being a witness to the exploitation of the Zongo youth over the past many years by the NDC, his worry, as it is with many discerning persons both in the 'human quarries' and outside them, was understandable.
Part of the preparation for such NDC activities entails the recruitment of the youth to present a semblance of overwhelming numbers, a time-tested module.
The composer of the piece shed tears, as it were, when he composed the piece. He recounted how over the years the NDC continues to regard and use the Zongo communities as quarries for its reckless demonstrations over anything from opposition to NHIS, Free SHS to the compilation of a new voters' register. The youth have seen action in many an NDC act of abrasion. Being the backbone of the largely disruptive enterprises, they are offered 'hand-to-mouth' dues.
There was fatality at the NDC's Ashanti Regional headquarters when a Zongo youth murdered his colleague early last year, a needless loss of life because of a party which has nothing in place to secure the future of these young persons.
We share in his pain as this reveals how the NDC concentrated on its thug recruitment drive in Kumasi Zongos such as Aboabo No 1 and 2, Ayigya Zongo, Sabon Zongo, etc., the convergence point being Aboabo and the termination, Yelwa.
Of course, recruitment for such useless and tendentious exercises cannot take place at Ahodwo, Bantama or Nhyiaeso and others. In Accra too, they cannot take place in East Legon, Cantonments, Osu or North Legon, the quarries in the national capital being the down-trodden suburbs.
Suffice it to replicate a portion of his written concerns “for over 30 years this is how the NDC still sees us, a tool for recklessness, used, discarded and used again when the need comes.”
Organisers of such tension-generation walks, educated as they are, especially the money-bags behind them, would be serving the genuine needs of the Zongo youth across the country better by directing them to avail themselves of the opportunities being presented by the Free SHS and vocational training, not forgetting IT education originating from the Zongo development programmes. That is better than encouraging the naïve youth to fall over each other for pittances thrown at them after the daredevil and destructive missions they are made to undertake.
There have been instances of the Zongo youth transported from Kumasi to Accra for the usual NDC election-related missions.
A whole ministry dedicated to the improvement of the largely development-starved Zongo communities is a palpable sincerity on the part of the President to walk his talk of doing just that.
Opinion leaders must lead a campaign against the near-incessant exploitation of the Zongo youth by the NDC.