Feature Article of Sunday, 2 August 2015
Columnist: Jackson, Margaret
By Margaret Jackson
July 28, 2015
Politics is all about numbers. In fact, it is about consensus building and the crossing of carpets to where eagles dare to win new converts. Again, politics is about convincing others to put their trust in you. In addition, it is also about keeping your enemies closer than your loved ones. The late former Prime Minister of Ghana, Dr. KA Busia of the Dankwa-Busia clique could not have said it better when he famously stated that, “Politics is about stomaching nonsense”.
If you want to be a politician, you’ve got to have a bigger heart to accommodate a lot of garbage that people spill on you on a daily basis. Before President John Atta Mills passed on many of us thought that he was Ghana’s most insulted President. How wrong were we! Ever since President John Mahama assumed office, he has known no peace. The daily insults spewed on him by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) folks are so huge that if former President Mills were to be alive today, probably he would have regretted complaining to close associates about the unprovoked incessant attacks mounted on him by the NPP.
Yet we have Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the serial losing NPP flagbearer, who desperately wants to rule Ghana, but do not understand the dynamics of politics. Akufo-Addo simply believes in one thing. If you do not fall behind him, you are simply not good enough for his campaign. If you criticize him, you are an enemy to his forward march to grab power. If you do not troop to his house daily to bow before him, you are not worthy to be counted among his lot.
That is why for the first time in the history of the Dankwa-Busia tradition, the NPP is preparing for the 2016 elections that can make or break the party, but we have their current National Chairman, Paul Afoko and General Secretary, Kwabena Agyepong locked out of their party offices by recalcitrant supporters of Nana Akufo-Addo.
For close to three (3) months, Paul Afoko and Kwabena Agyepong, have been prevented by supporters, foot soldiers, or invincible forces of Akufo-Addo, from using the national offices of the NPP. This terrible unprecedented situation has therefore forced the two elected national executive officers of the NPP to work from their homes, yet we have Nana Akufo-Addo, who may go down as the most divisive politician ever to walk in Ghana looking on and smiling without doing anything about it.
Not too long ago, precisely May 29, 2015, Akufo-Addo, the twice-defeated presidential candidate and still the presidential candidate of the NPP for the 2016 election, was acclaimed the second Most Influential Person in Ghana. According to eTV-Ghana, which came out with this bogus award, they sampled votes from a “cross section of Ghanaians”, leading Akufo-Addo to win the second position.
Influential people in society normally unite people. They do not cause divisions. They do not divide and rule. They even bring people they perceive as their enemies on board. Yet we have Ghana’s so-called second most influential politician, Akufo-Addo not able to handle just two national executives of the NPP. What a shame!
Akufo-Addo has never been a smart politician, which is why he has surrounded himself with “yes men and women” who do not provide any meaningful advice to help his dithering political campaign. Akufo-Addo does not even recognize or perhaps know that Paul Afoko and Kwabena Agyepong have national supporters with a total number of about 50,000 or more, a whopping number of supporters that any smart politician who is seriously gunning to be President and Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces will never toy with.
In politics, nobody has been able to do it alone. Name recognition is very important. Political message is the centrepiece, but building political consensus and expanding your political tent is the most effective key to victory.
Today NPP is almost in tatters, because they have a flagbearer, Akufo-Addo who does not listen to anyone. He believes in being treated as a king, “He Who Must Be Obeyed”.
If not Akufo-Addo would never have walked out of a secret mediation meeting organized by former President John Agyekum Kufuor to bring the warring factions in the NPP together. Akufo-Addo does not understand politics, let alone know that in politics every move by a politician is critically analysed and measured in political terms. Therefore, his stupid ego, which compels him to show his simmering anger at critics at every given turn, makes him look terrible. Terrible politicians do not have listening ears, which is why I feel very sorry for the NPP. They thought that Akufo-Addo’s name recognition would easily propel them to victory in 2016, without thinking about the huge demerits that Akufo-Addo brings to the table.
At this time if even future mediation talks lead to Afoko and Agyepong regaining entry to their abandoned offices, it will accomplish just little or nothing. The bad blood that stubborn and unrepentant Akufo-Addo had sown in the NPP keeps boiling. It has permeated too much into NPP that there is so much suspicion going on with everybody watching his or her shoulders not to say or do anything that may be considered anti-Akufo-Addo. Is that what Akufo-Addo wants? Is that what NPP wants as they prepare for the 2016 election?