“Afropean” Triangle

I can’t even trust Mr. Kwesi Pratt to baby-sit my dog. And so I am still trying to figure out exactly why almost every one of the major Ghanaian media houses picked up his rather characteristic allegation that in the lead-up to the 2008 presidential election, Mr. Rawlings text-messaged the self-proclaimed rump-Convention People’s Party (CPP) firebrand and solicited his help in bumping the now-President Mills off the top ticket of the then-opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) – (See “Rawlings Sent Me a Text that Candidate Mills Should Be Removed – Kwesi Pratt Jnr.” Modernghana.com 2/13/10).

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The editor-publisher of the so-called Insight newspaper also alleges that Mr. Rawlings had urged other top-dogs of the NDC, including Mr. Ato Ahwoi, to publicly challenge the three-time presidential candidate of the party.

First of all, the fact that such serious allegation – most of the Ghanaian media actually dubbed it “a revelation” – is coming at least two years later and then just on the heels of Mr. Pratt’s having been dispatched by the Mills government to head a delegation to the World Cup drawing in South Africa, should cause a lot of readers to sit up and ponder. But even more strikingly, what needs to be asked regards precisely why the NDC patriarch would decide to first text-message an executive member of the CPP to assist in resolving an internal problem of a party against which the latter was engaged in a fierce, albeit absolutely futile, contest for power.

For instance, was it simply because the text-messager/sender, who was, by the way, adamantly pushing forth the candidacy of then-former Vice-President Mills for the third consecutive time ( a la the so-called Swedru Declaration), was now, somehow, fully convinced that the CPP had a more winsome candidate than the NDC? Or just that what Mr. Pratt, by his latest allegation, is telling his audience is the fact that he had all the while been camouflaging as a bona fide CPP hack when in reality he belonged, heart and soul, to the NDC?

Interestingly, the squealer claims to be still in possession of Mr. Rawlings’ text-message, although he has yet to publish it. And on the latter score, the obviously logical question to pose is the following: Precisely why did Mr. Pratt choose to make his allegation on a radio program, rather than either “simulcasting” the same, or even first publishing the alleged text-message in his own Insight newspaper and then following it up with a live radio discussion?

The obverse side of the equation, as it were, regards the fact that Mr. Pratt does not tell his audience what his response to Chairman Rawlings’ text-message was; and even more intriguingly, what Messrs. Rawlings and Pratt have said and/or written to each other in the wake of Dr. Mills’ clinching of the presidency?

We must also highlight the fact that Mr. Pratt has always been widely suspected to be a mole/snitch in the pay of the Butcher-of-Dzelukope, ever since the latter launched his so-called revolutionary housecleaning exercise in 1979 and was, in fact, widely alleged to have acted as a decoy and caused the Pinochet-style execution and disappearance of tens of law-abiding Ghanaian citizens who may not even have known or been aware of Mr. Pratt’s bloody role in the Rawlings revolution.

Interestingly enough, while writing the preceding, the so-called Atta Story, reportedly told by Mr. Rawlings to the most recent NDC delegates’ congress in Tamale, flashed through my mind, being that I am also quite familiar with the old mortuary attendant who took courteous care of the mortal remains of my late mother at the 37 Military Hospital some twelve years ago, while the family made funeral and burial arrangements for the old lady.

Anyway, in the Rawlings version, the former premier is supposedly counseled by the now-80-year-old “Krachi”-Atta to give up his chain-smoking of only his wife and close associates know what. Atta is also supposedly helped, in turn, to quit his heavy drinking by the Butcher-of-Dzelukope, who heartily claims to have been good friends with Atta for quite a great while.

Unfortunately, in retailing the foregoing “Parable of Crap-Talk” to their target audiences, almost every one of the Ghanaian media organizations missed the entire point/punch of the story. Most of the reporters and correspondents of these media establishments simply thought that the former Ghanaian strongman was alluding to his much-maligned seemingly incessant heckling relationship with President Mills. But, in fact, what the smoke-tanked Mr. Rawlings simply meant was that like all human endeavors, Ghanaian politics is all about give-and-take, with Chairman Agbotui, of course, doing most of the giving. For, believe it or not, dear reader: Every butcher requires the devoted services of an undertaker, a mortuary man; which is precisely what the role has been for President Mills all these years that he has been trucking “shit-bombs” with Jack Jato Dzelukope and rapturously apologizing for the latter’s untold atrocities.

Anyway, about the only obvious thread linking Mr. Pratt, the shameless mole, to his perennial paymasters, of course, are their Afropean names.

*Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D., is Associate Professor of English, Journalism and Creative Writing at Nassau Community College of the State University of New York, Garden City. He is a Governing Board Member of the Accra-based Danquah Institute (DI), the pro-democracy think tank, and author of 21 books, including “Ghanaian Politics Today” (Atumpan Publications/Lulu.com, 2008).

E-mail: okoampaahoofe@aol.com.

The opinions expressed here are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position or have the endorsement of the Editorial Board of AfricaNewsAnalysis.