Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro.
Thank you very much for your clear support for the CPP if you have to choose between the NDC and the CPP. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same thing for the NPP.
In the 2000 elections, we all agreed that it was very extremely important for deepening of the strength of democratic forces to unseat the NDC from power. What we feared most was a consolidation of a constitutional despotism under the guise of a democracy. This is what informed our support for the NPP.
Besides, we felt that times have changed and a lot of water had passed under the bridge. The CPP opportunists who followed K.N Arkaah to the NDC camp had also made sure the party could never unite to be a force to be reckoned with. Under the circumstances, it made a lot of sense to throw our weight behind the only viable opposition vehicle we had available. And that happened to be the NPP.
After repeating the same demands for the rule of law, respect for human rights, accountability and probity, we thought they could even be better than the PNDC dictatorship.
Not that our strategy did not receive criticisms from very respectable comrades. One of the was the late Comrade S. S. Barfour-Awuah. He felt it was a self-evident fact the the CPP must NEVER have anything in common with the Busia-Danquah traditon. He told me personally that we were playing a very dangerous game, and that by the time these people begin to show their true colours, it would be too late.
I remember constantly brushing aside his concerns with a favourite proverb: "Nsu a wodze kum gya no, wonhywe no kronkron" which roughly translates as "If your house is under fire, you do not verify if the water you are using to put out the fire is clean or not".
I can even forgive Kufour for his medals. What really shocked me was how people I have been in the trenches personally fighting for the respect for human rights, the rule of law, democracy and for probity and accountability changed so completely when they came to power.
Very slowly they began to compare and justify their own atrocities with that of the military dictatorship we had all agreed was very bad. You talk about the assassination of Ya Naa, and the only sensible thing they can tell is ie a story that once upon a time someoen went to murder three hight court judges. Julor Jato even once asked me "Compare the number of Ghanaians we have killed with the number of Ghanaians the PNDC killed, don't you see a big difference?"
Some of us did not support the NPP to be told that this was only to bring the numbers down but not to abolish it! Human rights abuses cannot be quantified. Organisations like Amesty International are very clear about it. A president who has even the blood of one innocent Ghanaian on his hands is not fit to be a president, according to me.
Telling me that the NPP has only killed one chief and forty elders whilst the PNDC killed almost 250 Ghanaians makes me sick and very sad. You can only be sure that I always hit back upon recovery from such attacks on my sensibilities.
This is where we are today. Okoampa could say the Graphic had been entrusted into the hands of the NPP and so the NPP had every right to monopolise its use against opposition voices. And the strange thing is that you do not see anyone in the NPP who is sensible enough to point out these excesses and shameful reversals of the democratic principles they stood for whilst in opposition.
I am not even talking about the corruption, the cocaine business, and other disgusting scandals which plagued the NPP, such as ministers who put up money to buy up state bungalows we have reserved for our public officers since colonial times! We have people like Jake Obetsebi Lamptey who see nothing wrong with this!
The bold attempts to go to the strong room of the electoral commission to physically change the electoral results for Ashanti Region. The refusal to concede defeat even though your own pollsters had warned you it was coming, which nearly led to a civil war and an unnecessary bloodbath.
The abuse of the judiciary, the the wheeling and dealings behind international contracts and the perception that tyour party always showed more concern for multi-national corporations than the interest of the poor man and woman in the street!
For these reasons and other personal ones too painful and sensitive to raise in public, I decided to throw my weight behind the NDC for the same reasons we feared from the NDC earlier: a creeping constitutional despotism, this time around spiced with typical Busia-Danquah feudalism and neocolonialist arrogance.
For now, just like Kwesi Pratt, Jnr., I prefer the NDC any time any day, to the NPP. The NDC certainly has a lot of problems, but the level of incompetence and indolence and genuine stupidity that we saw under Kufour are fast disappearing.
Above all, if the NPP had won, Nana Addo would simply have doubled the Ghana Police force and then invite the Americans to establish the USAfriCom Headquarters here in Ghana. I suspect that this plan is on stand-by. This is why I can NEVER trust the NPP with power!
No hard feelings. This is honestly how I feel about your party. I am happy to get this out of my chest, especially the fact that the CPP is going to take over from the NPP as the largest opposition in parliament in the 2012 elections!
Forward Ever! Backwards Never!!!
Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro.
E-mail: nanaakyeamensah at gmail dot com