I love the NPP very much, just like majority of Ghanaians. Every fibre or organ in me is crying out loudly against this flagrant abuse of my human rights. I and many Ghanaians voted for the NPP only for Afari Djan and his Electoral Commission to overturn the will of the masses. But I am one member of the party who believe that in the midst of the EC’s attempts to embark on its destructive route to Golgotha, the party must not engage in any act which is likely to tarnish its image in the long run.
I have always, right from the time I started writing for the party more than six years ago advocated the stance that, in dealing with one’s avowed enemy in moment of crisis, one should not forget one most important cardinal principle in life – Always be in control of your emotions. Nelson Mandela adopted a stoic philosophy in life. In spite of the ill treatment he received at the hands of agents of Apartheid South Africa, he did not exhibit any sign of bitterness. And that perhaps accounted for his exemplary leadership stature qualities in contemporary African and World politics. On his election as President of post apartheid South Africa, he did not exhibit any trait which could be construed him as a hater of the white race.
It is on this premise that I advise the NPP leadership to be circumspect in its actions and utterances at such a period the party finds itself at the cross roads.
The New Patriotic Party has chosen to use legitimate means to challenge the doctored and declared results at the law courts. I commend the leadership of the party for such bold step. Demonstrations are some of the means to express our anger at the injustice meted to our party by Afari Djan and the supposedly Peace Council led by the Reverend Emmanuel Asante Antwi. Nevertheless, I strongly feel that a day’s demonstration is enough to prove to those who have perverted justice and the rest of the international community that we are no pushovers and that we are not going to swallow any bitter pill from anybody, no matter how mighty placed the person is.
Continuous exhibition of anger on the streets of the nation’s capital will worsen our plight and dim the fortunes of our great party. You see, if you bring people on to the streets, you must be prepared to take responsibility for the actions and utterances of the people and as we all know it becomes very difficult to control their actions, especially after the first day. Wrong people infiltrate the ranks and file of the demonstrators to commit atrocities in the name of the party/organization that called out the people and that was exactly what happened in the case of the NPP.
I do not know what measures the leadership of our party put in place to flush out infiltrators when it asked its teeming supporters to assemble. As things stand out now, the party must investigate the assault on the journalists and deal drastically with the miscreants who carried out those attacks if only they could be found. In fact, after the confusion that erupted at the house of the flag- bearer as a result of the spontaneous attacks on the journalists, the party leadership should have “reign in” its members just as wild horses were “broken” or tamed in the United States. If the leadership had ordered the arrest of perpetrators of those acts of vandalism or destruction who were presumed to be members of the NPP, sanity would have prevailed and any such negative act would have been nipped in the bud. The New Patriotic Party is a disciplined party and its members and supporters are expected to behave with decorum.
As can be seen, some of the alleged attacks especially on some citizens of Ghana have been exaggerated. And this is affecting the image of the party. We must do a thorough investigation to fish out those who committed such gargantuan crime against their fellow human beings. Again, I am of the opinion that after the debacle at the residence of our flag-bearer during which some journalists were alleged to have been assaulted by some party supporters, efforts should have made to video tape or install some electronic gadgets at vantage points at the Kwame Nkrumah circle to record everything that took place. If we had done that, we will now be singing a different tune instead of being confronted with the task of embarking on the difficult task of doing some damage control. The perpetrators would have been found out by now. And like what happens in the advanced countries, if we record the event, the leadership of the party would sit down at the end of the day to watch the video. This will give us of an idea of what to do the next time people are called out onto the streets.
I now come to the utterances of some party elders. We have opted to legitimately pursue the case in court. Thus, the utterance by some top members of the party to turn the Obra Spot near the Kwame Nkrumah Circle into Tahrir Square of Egypt is greatly at variance with our posture. Ghanaians are not Arabs. Fire a canister of tear gas into the midst of people and everybody will scamper for dear life or “take cover”. And in the case of the Egyptians they were fighting to get rid of a dictator. Like I have stated earlier, we have chosen to tread the path of justice and we must not seen to be engaging in any act of vandalism and wanton destruction of life and property. Such acts will alienate the party from ordinary Ghanaians, whom we are attempting to woo into the party.
Like I have stated earlier, since we have chosen to tread the path of non violence, the party must not be seen to be engaging in any act which is likely to endanger the peace and stability of the country.
What happens if the court declares a runoff between our party and that of NDC? And remember Peace Fm and the Multi Media Group have been our strong allies by giving us their platform to articulate our views. What do you think will happen under such a circumstance? Do you think the journalists who were assaulted by miscreants masque rally under the umbrella of the NPP will vote for the party? Do you think family members of the assaulted journalist will vote for the NPP? I don’t think so!
I am happy to learn that the party has made a verbal apology to the affected media houses and quickly followed it up with written ones. The Leadership should make time to personally visit the affected journalist and also replace their properties which were vandalized during the attacks.
Again, I would like the party to advise those members whose pictures appeared on Television and pages of Newspapers wielding replica guns. The NPP is not a belligerent party. We are not poised for war in the literal sense of the word. Mere rhetoric and supposedly militant outlook are not what will win the battle for us. We are for peace and that is why we have chosen to go and reclaim our mandate at the law court.
I now wish to comment the calls by Heads of member Countries of the African Union and the ECOWAS for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, Flag-bearer of the New Patriotic Party to concede defeat. Those calls were made in very bad taste. If indeed, Nana Addo has lost, why, he will concede. But in a situation where there is clear evidence that he has won, why should he surrender? All that Nana Addo and the New Patriotic Party are saying is very simple. Let the Ghanaian law courts decide who won the December 7, 2012 Presidential Elections. In the alternative, let the issue be tabled before an international arbitration of eminent legal luminaries with the relevant blue sheets before it. Let them go through the records one after the other. If at the end of the day, the arbitrators feel President John Mahama won the elections, let the status quo remain. However, if the evidence points clearly to a Nana Addo’s victory, then the proper thing should be done. The President should concede defeat to enable Nana Addo to be sworn in as President.
Is this too much for the international community to accept?
Source: Daniel Danquah Damptey (Damptey@yahoo.com) 0243715297