Why Rawlings Summons The Volta Against Mills?

The OmanbaPa Research Group

 News Commentary

Gradually, the ideological, political, professional and indeed cultural differences between President Atta Mills and ex-President Rawlings, are surfacing and if care is not taken, the predicted “political arms-twisting”, as the OmanbaPa sees it, might in no distant months, splash on the faces of the Ghanaian, otherwise why Rawlings summons Volta Delegates?

Recently, myjoyonline report (Rawlings: NDC cannot afford to disappoint the people, 01 July 2009), quoted the former president as saying that given the scant resources at the disposal of the then main opposition National Democratic Congress P(NDC) for the fiercely contested 2008 elections and the NDC’s resultant victory, the Ghanaian people gave the NDC that he single-handedly founded- a moral mandate to reverse the corrupt rule of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and build a more united and prosperous nation.

Thus in what appeared to be stringent directives to the “incorruptible Volta NDC politicians”, the ex-military strongman who has had his misgivings about multi-party democracy, reminded his kinsmen not only of what he describes as politically motivated killings with no trials whatsoever, and the general reign of terror of violent crimes that he says are the designs of (P)NDC political opponents whose aim is to discredit the regime and make it unpopular but also the likely unfortunate political consequence that might befall on them if the ruling New NDC loses power again in 2012 general elections because of inaction? Rawlings has again repeated the same directive to another honest Voltarians.

This began when President Fiifi Atta Mills decided to maintain some appointees and functionaries of the NPP when he assumed office, which in the quoted words of the Flt-Lt., who ruled Ghana for almost two decades, created the unfortunate impression that nothing had changed and had, as Rawlings is said to have put it, emboldened the opponent, here the NPP, to perpetuate the very acts for which they were voted out.

True, JusticeGhana recalls some of Rawlings’ favourite citations- the said serial killings of the 34 women, that had also been described by his opponents as a slap on the face of his own leadership as the said murders, happened under his P(NDC) regime? Yes, Rawlings promised evidence and hinted that the killings were going to end if NPP won power as its members, would have no justification for its continuation on achieving their political goal?

Indeed until the controversial arrest and imprisonment of one Quansah, in Nsawam, in connection with these cold-blooded killings some years ago, most Ghanaians had thought that these atrocities might have been committed by some gangs from neighbouring countries. But the Flt-Flt., under whose watch three High Court judges and a retired army officer were kidnapped and also murdered in cold-blood and burnt somewhere around Bondase military range- off Tema, during a nationwide night-curfew, insists differently.

“They are at it again. You don’t need to be a mathematician to tell who is doing this. This time they have even extended it to foreign nationals who have invested in the country and when they kill, they disembowel their victims and supposedly take body parts to paint a picture of ritual murders. …The investment climate is so undermined,” he said. The Flt-Lt argues forcefully that had Mills acted swiftly and early enough, his opponent NPP- wouldn’t have been so emboldened to pick up arms to terrorize the people again.

This was said to have been told when a delegation led by a member of the Council of State, Dr Bernard Glover, including Mr. Modestus Ahiable, former Regional Minister and NDC Regional Chairman; Mr. Joseph Amenowude, Regional Minister and MP for Hohoe South; Deputy Regional Minister Joseph Kwaku Nayan; Mr. Joe Gidisu, MP for North Tongu; Mrs Juliana Azuma-Mensah, Minister of Tourism; Ms Akua Sena Dansua, Minister of Women and Children’s Affairs and Mr. Francis Ganyaglo- Volta Regional Secretary of the NDC and the DCE for Kpando and others, call on him at his residence, in Accra.

Indeed justice has eluded Ghana over some unusual killings which appear to be complex in nature for the security agents, not even with the assumption of power of the New NDC. To this end, he charged the Volta ministers therefore, to assert themselves and to bring their individual characters for which President Mills appointed them to bear on the general direction of governance and, as Myjoyonline puts it, encourage them not to stay mum when things go wrong but to speak out and restore the sanctity of the NDC party.

“You are ministers of the state and you have a duty to serve the people and state of Ghana. You must not join some of your colleagues who will whitewash the situation and say all is well. Please wake up,” the former military leader told the representatives of his home region which included Dr. Glover and Messrs Ahiable and Amenowde, who expressed their gratitude to their founding-messiah for his counsel and said NDC would eternally be grateful for his encouragement, resourcefulness and forthrightness, urging him not to hold back his observations of NDC as it seeks to deepen its democratic roots.

Yes, deepening its democratic roots also calls for the rule of law- which also explains that no one should be above the law of the land and that the powers of government ought to be exercised not only at the whims and caprices of the executive and the perceptions of the media or be hearse of unsubstantiated hearsay but rather on due process of the law. Thus, not until the accused of wrong doing is put before a competent court of law and after having all the rights under the law to defend him/her, adjudged guilt of the offence, yes, s/he cannot be labelled criminal, no matter what evidence we hold against him/her?

It is perhaps, against this backdrop that President Mills and indeed the Justice Ministry, appear to be dragging their feet so as to ensure that all relevant evidence of the said allegations, and here, as are being forcefully imputed by the retired air force officer, are assembled to avoid what opponents might describe as summary trial and witch-hunt.

Yet, Mr Rawlings- the embodiment of probity and accountability, who is said to have told his Volta kinsmen during the 2008 general elections that they should vote massively for his NDC so as to redeem themselves as “fourth-rate Ghanaian citizens” and whose wife, clandestinely succeeded in purchasing state asset for her alleged non-governmental Organization 31st December Women Movement, which by all standards, operated at the backyard of P(NDC), is reported to have told his visitors that the Ghanaian public is not amused with the performance of the Professor J.E.A. Mills-led Government so far, and that the ruling NDC, needs to do a lot more to revive its image and restore its credibility.

How credible is Rawlings, who once scorned the ballot-box for almost a decade and for political future of himself and colleagues, entrenched a transitional provisions that denies any competent court of justice, jurisdiction in probing the actions and/or inactions of PNDC that ruled firmly for a decade but without probity and accountability, is propagating here, when he summoned his Volta delegates” to support and consult with one another?

“If you unite and work as a team, they would realize that you would have solutions to the challenges facing the country within yourselves. You must also consult with your colleagues who had previously held your positions because they are knowledgeable in a lot of areas and situations that must be dealt with and which do not require a reinvention of the wheel,” he advised. It is unclear to JusticeGhana whether “knowledgeable” here is attributed to the said corrupted NPP ex-ministers who must be booted hanged without delay by Mills or NDC stalwarts, who Rawlings expects them to take a high moral ground if they were to convince the Ghanaian that the change they voted for is a realistic one?

Much as we could sense and indeed, read politriks into this matter, it worth noting that the insistence of Ex-President Jerry John Rawlings cannot be swept aside, at least, not for the fact that he had been in the helm of affairs in our country for almost two decades. For this reason, he might have acquired an unquestionable knowledge and understanding of how politics, justice and national security could be manipulated against political opponents and leadership. Rawlings could therefore, be competent and valuable witness to the people of Ghana in this national issues that ought to be combated on all fronts.

With this in mind it seems to us that the self-righteous Flt-Lt. J.J. Rawlings who preaches probity and accountability but lacks “enduring memory of recollecting the “Good Samaritan” who sponsors his children’s education abroad, could be either part of the problem or solution. Indeed we of the JusticeGhana recognise the honest value that the then Candidate J.E.A. Mills placed on consultation, yet Rawlings’ affronts on this matter suggest that in-camera-consultation with the presidency might have fell on deaf ears?

So, in advising President Mills, we of the OmanbaPa Research Group could only rely on history rather than precision associated with the on-going Volta Delegates Summons, especially, on the question of measuring Rawlings’ moral fortitude and patience that many, including Presidents Limanns, Arkaahs and Kufuors, might have poled higher enough, but stumbled midway because of their human inefficiencies and drawbacks?


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