Opinion: Asiedu-Nketia Should Not Underestimate the Intelligence of Ghanaians by Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD

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Johnson Asiedu Nketia, NDC General Secretary

I watched the videoclip titled “NDC to Punish Minority MPs Who Back 450-Seat Chamber” and could not help feeling sorry for General-Secretary Johnson Asiedu-Nketia. This is primarily because while it was endorsed, rather inadvisably, by ruling-party operatives like Speaker Michael Aaron Oquaye and the Parliamentary Majority Leader, namely, Mr. Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, the actual originator of the decision to construct the aborted 450-seat Parliamentary Chamber was former President John Dramani Mahama, in whose 2013 State of the Nation Address (SONA) this proposal first made its official appearance. And, so, for the wiry-framed man nicknamed “General Mosquito” to pretend as if this untenably profligate proposal was the imposition of the Akufo-Addo-led government of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) constitutes the height of criminal mischief and inexcusable mendacity of felonious proportions.

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It was also quite amusingly interesting to hear Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, himself a former National Democratic Congress’ Member of Parliament from Wenchi, as well as a former Deputy Defense Minister, claim disingenuously that the estimated tab of $200 Million (USD) for the abandoned construction of the 450-seat parliamentary chamber could be more meaningfully applied to the construction of at least some 200 state-of-the-art classroom facilities for the accommodation of a remarkable percentage of the exponential increase in the number of students occasioned by Nana Akufo-Addo’s fee-free Senior High School System. It is amusingly interesting because ever since its salubrious implementation, General Mosquito is one of the front-row leaders of the country’s main opposition National Democratic Congress who have pooh-poohed this hitherto unprecedented development of the country’s vast pool of human resources as a “quixotic project” that was unsustainable in the long-term.

We must also quickly point out that both former President John Dramani Mahama and Mr. Alban SK Bagbin, the longest-serving National Democratic Congress’ Member of Parliament, have taken stances along the same elitist path, even while scandalously claiming to be wearing the dignified mantles of “social democrats” who cared far more about the needs and aspirations of Ghana’s lumpen poor than the very leaders of the New Patriotic Party who have literally implemented nearly every social intervention program that was studiously aimed at lifting up the desperately poor and destitute from grinding poverty and underclass existence. And on the latter count, ready reference could be made of former President John Agyekum-Kufuor’s National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) and the School-Feeding Program, as well as Welfare Assistance to the very old, nursing mothers and the disabled, all of which were, at best, poorly handled by the successive regimes of Presidents John Evans Atta-Mills, late, and John Dramani Mahama.

We also need to underscore the fact that building a new 450-seat parliamentary chamber was never on the agenda of President Akufo-Addo. The construction of the multipurpose and ultra-modern National Cathedral was, but, of course, that was the private “Thank God” project of the President that was from its proposed inception to be wholly funded from public donations and seed money forked up by Nana Akufo-Addo from his own private bank account or personal wallet. The good news that has swirled around the untenably ill-conceived proposal for the construction of the 450-seat parliamentary chamber is, of course, the inescapable fact that it has forced the self-serving “Cash-and-Carry” leaders of the National Democratic Congress to start thinking critically and progressively like statesmen and women, instead of the cynical operatives of the infamous “Create, Loot and Share” political scam-artists and scumbags so eloquently and poignantly articulated by Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Ghana, Mr. Jones Victor Mawulorm Dotse.

*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com  Ghanaffairs

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