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23.02.2020 Feature Article

THE TRUE MEANING OF BEING A GOOD PARTY MEMBER

CAMERON DUODUCAMERON DUODU
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In the 20th century, being a member of a political party is one of the best ways of seeking to achieve certain goals for one's country.

No single individual can achieve what might be termed the “maximum good”, for society as a whole. A political party, on the other hand, provides the widest possible opportunity for ideas to be promulgated, discussed and adopted.

Now, once a political party has agreed on a policy, it is essential that all members of the party support and implement it. But this is more difficult than assumed. Too often, “party chieftains” undemocratically hand policies down to the members, instead of consulting them as they evolves policies.

In Britain, for instance, many members of one of the two parties, the Labour party, belong to the “right-wing” of the party. They are, in effect, sympathetic to many of the Conservative Party's policies.

However, for reasons known only to themselves, they remain in the Labour Party. But when they get the opportunity, they stab the Labour Party in the back! This is what happened in the recent general election. Labour Party members who loathe “socialist” policies, rounded on the left-wing leader of the party, Mr Jeremy Corbyn. Well, the electorate concluded that if Corbyn could not win the confidence of some of his own party's members, then they too would not entrust power to him, either.

The right-wing media in the UK were, of course, happy that Labour members themselves had given them this “gift” against Mr Corbyn, and they hammered it constantly. And the Conservative leader, Mr Boris Johnson, rode to victory on the divisions within the Labour Party, obtaining one of the largest majorities the Conservatives had ever won in recent years.

In Ghana, the euphoria with which the NDC has greeted the galamsey issue in recent days, and is using it to bash the NPP Government, is analogous to the Labour Party's inability to heal its divisions. It's laughable, for instance, to see how the NDC's spokespersons have suddenly discovered that galamsey is polluting our rivers!

Where was they e when their party's leader went to Kyebi to say that he was saddened by the destruction of rivers and the landscape by galamsey that he had observed from the air but, at the same time, declared that the “brutal force” being use against galamseyers (by the Task Force he had himself set up, presumably for cosmetic purposes!) was undeserved because “they [the galamseyers] just wanted to make a living?”

Did the NDC expect the water to stop being polluted, when its leader had told the galamseyers that he understood their “need” to earn a living by destroying rivers, streams, water-bodies and food farms?

Was the NDC leader's statement not a direct encouragement to the galamseyers to redouble their efforts to “make a living” through galamsey, since the Government of the day was on their side?

But three years on, it is the NPP that is literally reeling from charges by the NDC that the NPP is encouraging galamsey to thrive by failing to implement the NPP's own programme for stopping galamsey, GALAMSTOP!

You ask: Are we in Kwaku Anansekurom, or what? And yet, if you look +into the matter closely, you will find that it is, indeed, the NPP that opened itself up for the NDC to obtain the means of ridiculing the NPP.

And the NDC does have grounds to mount its propaganda offensives. For it was NPP members who were video'd by Anas taking money from applicants who wanted to be registered as legitimate “small-scale miners”. What happened to those NPP people? Did the NPP expel them from the party for exposing the NPP's anti-galamsey campaign to ridicule?

With that experience still bitter on the tongues of the NPP, up pops another charge of corruption – namely, that some of the excavators seized by Operation Vanguard and GALAMSTOP personnel cannot be accounted for.

Again, NPP people are those publicly fingered. One key regional party official was such a bad nut that he even tried to get the Chairman of IMCIM to incriminate himself by saying into a hidden telephone that he, the IMCIM chairman, had agreed that some excavators should either be sold to raise funds for the NPP, or be supplied to NPP galamseyers! Has the NPP reacted?

NO! You live under a two-party system, with an opposition whose motto has been admitted to be, “If you're given one sheep, say you were given ten cows”, and you behave in such a sleepy manner?

Meanwhile, the leader of the NPP, the poor guy at whose table every buck stops, keeps saying “We cannot let Ghana's unborn children suffer because we would have destroyed all our water sources before they are born! We must stop corruption! We must punish the wrong-doers!”

Do the personnel engaged in stopping galamsey listen to the leader? Do they care whether their actions embarrass him by giving the NDC ammunition with which to try and shoot him down?

Every NPP member should answer that question for himself or herself.

And as they search their consciences, let it be clear to them that if you give your opponents a weapon, they will use it against you! Just as you would if you got any dirt against them! Especially, in an election year.

As my class teacher used to warn us, “If you don't change your recalcitrant ways and you fail your exams, don't say it's anybody else who “killed Antwi!”

Now, he never told us who “Antwi was”. He didn't need to. For we perfectly understood that by Antwi, he meant “everyone”. In other words, in acting as stupid persons, “we would have killed – OUR OWN VERY SELVES!”

Cameron Duodu
Cameron Duodu, © 2020

Martin Cameron Duodu is a United Kingdom-based Ghanaian novelist, journalist, editor and broadcaster. After publishing a novel, The Gab Boys, in 1967, Duodu went on to a career as a journalist and editorialist. Column Page: CameronDuodu

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not neccessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."

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