I have a cousin whose political persuasion is diametrically opposed to mine. He stands under the eagle-headed Umbrella, while I prefer riding on the Great Elephant. It would, therefore, be a surprise to many to hear me say he was the inspiration behind today’s write-up, wouldn’t it?
Yes, you heard right. A cousin from the Umbrella stock encouraged me to write and expose the hypocrisy of the former President, who is the obvious choice of flagbearer for Zu-za in the upcoming 2024 polls. He fumed as he wondered why President Ogwanfunu would resurrect the ex-gratia debate when he is arguably the greatest beneficiary of that policy.
Frankly, I would have been very excited if the promise to restructure the ex-gratia policy had come from a different politician. It is very difficult to believe the promise because it is coming from a man who has enjoyed ex-gratia since 1997 and continues to do so. One needn’t be told it is only a political gimmick from him to hoodwink voters to help him resurrect. Indeed, if nakedness promises to give you clothes, listen to its name.
President Ogwanfunu received ex-gratia as deputy minister in 1997, as minister in 2001, as Member of Parliament (MP) in 2005 and 2009, as Vice-President in 2013, and as President in 2017. Only Speaker A.S.K. Bagbin has received one more (2021) than he has. But the quantum of his ex-gratia far outweighs that of Speaker Bagbin’s. As I write, he is enjoying all the perks of a former president, which include residential and official residence, chauffeur-driven cars and paid holiday trips, etc.
Come to think of it, do you know that President Ogwanfunu never left the Vice-President’s official residence even when he became President? As a result, Vice-President Amissah-Arthur, of blessed memory, was compelled to live in his Bank of Ghana residence until they left office on January 6, 2017.
We were also in this country when President Ogwanfunu, through Chief of Staff Julius Deborah, requested No.3 Prestige Link, Cantonment as residence and No. 6 Third Avenue, Ridge as office. But the request was rejected by the Nana Dee government because of the uproar it generated among the populace.
So, you see, how can one believe such a man if he promises to review the allowances and perks of Article 71 office holders? If he indeed wants us to believe his cock and bull story, then he should stop collecting the huge payments from the State and at least return 2022 salaries and allowances collected so far. Then, and only then, can we believe his tall story.
Maybe Prof. Joshua Alabi, his party folk, was referring to something else last week when he wrote, “Some people create their own storm, then get upset when it rains.” But it amply describes the pitiable situation President Ogwanfunu has created for himself.
Obviously, President Ogwanfunu was trying to play the victim so as to court public sympathy. But the documentary proof released by the government has left him with egg on his face. But does desperate Ogwanfunu even have the word ‘shame’ in his lexicon?
I now understand my cousin’s concerns. He knew President Ogwanfunu’s lies and hypocrisy would court public disaffection for the former President and the Umbrella, and also provide some breathing space for the Elephant. Yes, another campaign propaganda has fallen flat!
Knowing how desperate President Ogwanfunu seeks political resurrection, I will not be surprised if he comes out with another lie or hypocritical claim. And trust your nephew and his kind not to shirk their responsibility of exposing the hypocrisy and shamelessness of the former President. But for now, the wind has blown and all can see the messy anus of the hen.
See you next for another interesting konkonsa, Deo volente!