On The Effusions of Akufo Addo On The 2012 General Elections

   Ghanaians continue to share their views weeks after Nana Akufo Addo, the flagbearer of the opposition New Patriotic party, made comments in relation to a tribal grouping and the 2012 general elections upon meeting activists of the party in Koforidua in the Eastern Region of Ghana. This is the first part of an interview granted to the people of Ashaiman on the issue. 

Normally, violence is not supposed to have any place in the political discourse of our country but certain people deliberately employ violence in an attempt to prevent the true outcome or the decision of the people. How can it be that on the day of elections, people are sent to snatch ballot boxes because a particular candidate believes he might lose the elections in a particular area. For me I have come to the conclusion that the problems of our people continue to exist because the will of the people does not manifest during elections. So we end up getting leaders who have no idea about the difficulties facing the poor man and therefore he continues to live in abject poverty.”

Very often when we come to discuss violence in politics we forget the role the media plays in that direction. The media has become so important to the lives of the people and as it comes with some good, it can also be very dangerous if it is not managed well. It has become very obvious that there is a very deep division on the media front. Whilst there are a few who are trying to put on the spectacles of objectivity all in the national interest, others have just become mercenary. Their only objective is to spew hatred and absolute rubbish in the public domain. They refuse to report on the substantive issues and because Ghanaians relish reading and listening to rumour and lies, these media outlets have always a ready audience. Something must be done about this.”

Any foreigner who visits this country even for a day quickly comes to realize the peace and hospitality of the Ghanaian people. Violence has never been a part of the people of this country because of our past and our own maturity as a people. It is rather unfortunate there are a few people who are trying to corrupt the social life of the people. The court are no longer become places we can go in search of justice. The people are daily being forced to take to attitudes which are not Ghanaian and this is where leadership must show the way.”

Of course there were moments in the history of this country when there was violence which had led to bloodshed starting from the 28th February shooting of the veterans to the stiff opposition given Nkrumah after the formation of the Convention People’s Party. However, we have come a long way and I believe that it would be difficult for the people of this country to fall for trivial issues which would divide them. No matter how much anyone tries to inflame the atmosphere with hatred and animosity that person would not succeed because the people of this country know better.”

Apart from ethnic conflicts which may occur from time to time I believe that if we are able to get the various political parties to educate their rank and file support concerning the issue conflict prevention and how to ensure that it does not happen. It would be completely irresponsible on the part of leadership of a party to excite its supporters towards violence. If credible evidence is gathered which leads to the conclusion that a political organization or an individual has organized any violent activity, then that political party must be banned from the politics of this country. We need to protect the peace we are currently enjoying.”

I want to call on the security set-ups especially the Inspector General Of Police to put his foot down and make sure that people are made to understand that no one is above the law. We need to instill that culture in our people before it is too late. Gradually there are sections of the Ghanaian people who feel they have every right to infringe on the law with impunity. When this development is not curtailed then on what basis are we going to ask others to also behave themselves? The laws of the land must be seen to be working for the rich and the poor and not only for the rich. In any case who doesn’t know that the violence is being caused by some so-called honourable men and women of our society?”

There is one question I really want to ask. Why is it that in a country like Ghana with vast resources like gold, timber, rivers and all the others is still not moving as fast as we would all want. Something must explain for this situation. We have thousands of graduates coming out of our tertiary institutions every year yet they are not able to add value to these resources for national development? Why are we not giving our people the capacity with which they can grow? It seems to me that we are only creating the grounds for the development of other nationals and not our own people. Now to those politicians who have began preaching chaos and poisoning the atmosphere, they must watch out because this stupidity would not be tolerated in Kwame Nkrumah’s Ghana.”

Firstly I want to call on the government and its officers not to travel along the path being charted by the opposition. Instead contributing to the debate on how to make Ghana a better place, they have become very insulting and that is how they want to play the game. It is for the government to behave more maturely and desist from being pushed around. Ghanaians have come to know what these people are planning. They know they cannot debate on issues because there is a lot of good going on so far as development is concerned so they have to play the dirty game. We are no kids and God would be our guide. They should concentrate on how to reduce more the water and electricity bills and create more employment and I can say without any shred of doubt that these people would be kept under lock in opposition because they are nation wreckers.”


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