John Dramani Mahama
Again, it will be unfair to make a sweeping statement that suggests all the top brass of the country’s main opposition party—NDC—have monolithic world view regarding the trajectories, especially, the selection process to pick a particular presidential candidate for the 2020 general election. At least, we know the party’s top leaders, such as former president-founder J.J. Rawlings, Dr. Kwesi Botchwey, Dr. Obed Asamoah, Spio-Garbrah, Alban Bagbin, Prof. Alabi, and many other leading members may not be all that happy about the rough road ex-president Mahama-tilted faction is taking the party along as we write.
Also, there may be some nuances among the party leaders in terms of the campaign approach/messaging, or some strong objections to the composition of the current executives, but one enduring characteristic almost all the NDC functionaries may share is their sense of entitlement to power. Certainly, the party’s apparatchiks find it extremely difficult to adjust to normal life in opposition. This is to say the NDC is so used to acquiring and mismanaging power since its relatively short inception that most of the members act as if they are entitled exclusively to the country’s political power.The realization that NDC is not in charge of Ghana’s state of affairs makes Mahama/Asiedu Nketiah/Ofosu-Ampofo triumvirate, backed by their die-hard minions, engage in the business of throwing a fit! Ghanaians can call this phenomenon the politics of tantrums according to the NDC-2020 playbook
In simple translation, NDC, as a party, “breaths power, smokes power, eats power, worships power, baths in power, abuses power, and steals power.” This probably explains why most of the party members behave quite jittery and incompetent as a major opposition group, especially when they respond to event/issue of national importance. The NDC has a history of mismanagement, so a considerable number of the party’s top echelons have strong premonitions for the reason that they are not in power, then whichever party that is in the political saddle now may also be abusing power as they used to do.
Let’s take a quick survey of NDC without power and increasingly it becomes clear from the party leadership’s unusually edgy demeanors and often hyperbolic reactions to real or imagined insecurity happening across the nation that the Mahama-controlled NDC party is scared of its own shadow. Evidently, there is a strategic reason behind the party’s pretext of the state of insecurity in Ghana.
Generally, Ghanaians are legendary peace-loving people which means any signal that their government is incapable of providing basic security for their lives and personal properties may come across as a complete shirk of governmental responsibility and national failure. Whenever anyone hears from the NDC or ex-president Mahama denouncing “insecurities” in Ghana under Nana Akufo-Addo administration, it is never because the NDC’s most inept second-coming presidential aspirant-cum-former president cares so much about Ghanaians’ personal safety more than everyone else.
Rather, it is because one of the NDC-Mahama’s numerous ploys is to create over-bloated narratives of national insecurity and socioeconomic hardships in Ghana. Having had the unique opportunity of interacting with the people from all backgrounds from the vantage position as former president, most likely JDM knows more than many citizens in the country that Ghanaians are forgiving and tend to be forgetful, too. For the latter point we know for sure is that Mr. Mahama is quoted to have stated that “Ghanaians are forgetful” bunch of people. In other words, irrespective of what a president does or doesn’t do while in power, Ghanaians will forget about it. Thus, Ghanaians and their vociferous media have already forgotten about Mahama-led government’s past misdeeds, including all the unsolved murders and violence that unfolded at the time NDC was in power.
So, why not manufacture stories based on truths, half-truths, and complete lies because when all the dust settle eventually, the experience will remain a far distant memory on the minds of the average Ghanaians based on the ex-president’s observation. Suffice it to say, Ghanaians will definitely forget that it was President Akufo-Addo’s unwavering leadership that resulted in what appears to be a long-lasting peace finally coming to Dagbon principality. Of course, judging by their utterances and lukewarm attitudes toward the Dagbon peace process, it is obvious that ex-president Mahama and many of his NDC sidekicks wish Ghanaians to forget the unique achievement as soon as possible, and never mention Nana Afufo-Addo’s name in connection with Dagbon’s nascent peace.
The whole point is, compared to the other political parties today, one can tell by all accounts that the NDC is super hungry for power, and the majority of them cannot believe their party doesn’t have the state power to “create, loot, and share” Ghana’s meager national resources any longer. They are throwing a fit all over the place; so, when one hears them venting, they are letting out their pent-up anger, frustration, disappointment, and utter disdain for the ruling NPP government led by the “Kyebi tough guy.” The Mahama-NDC falsely wants the country to believe that under President Akufo-Addo’s NPP regime Ghana is witnessing unprecedented murder and violence, even though it is this same leader whose behind-the-scenes effort had led to a peaceful outcome in one of the nation’s most violent areas—Dagbon land.
Predicated on their snappy behaviors, threatening, and insinuating comments in opposition, it is safe to say many followers in the NDC orbit have strong feelings that besides their party, any other political party in power is an aberration.Surely, the way the Mahama-hijacked NDC plays politics reminds some of us of a big bully or an unruly child in a neighborhood who could not have his or her way in a competitive backyard game and decided to disrupt the whole event or quit the game in anger amid insults and threats. As Ghana inches toward general election in 2020, ex-president Mahama’s NDC will “throw more fits” and political tantrums everywhere, including parliamentary walkouts or some complaints that our beloved Ghana under Nana Akufo-Addo is now like a war-zone in Syria or Yemen. Sadly, the NDC’s songs of doom will find gullible listeners among some of the docile media outlets in the country, because they will fawningly sing along as if JDM and the NDC had never run this nation into a deep ditch not long ago!
Bernard Asubonteng is US-based sociopolitical writer.