Not that most Ghanaians have never suspected that there was something seriously amiss with the functional capacity of the cranium of the man who forcibly imposed himself on Ghanaians for twenty years, with a good helping of K-47 assault rifles generously donated by the besieged Libyan tyrant. This largely explains why some Ghanaians, mainly partisans of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), have continued to staunchly support Mr. Gaddhafi against every iota of rationality and common sense. For this cynical brand of Ghanaian, what Mr. Gaddhafi has meant, in terms of stoking up unrest in many parts of Africa, even while self-servingly pretending to be about the business of decolonization and the anti-apartheid struggle is far more significant than the visceral fact that Mr. Gaddhafi has held the Libyan people in abject subjection – or as virtual slaves in their own country – for more than four decades.
Needless to say, it is this kind of cynicism that guaranteed from the get-go that President Jacob Zuma’s attempt at finding a constructive solution to the Libyan political crisis would, at best, typify a dramaturgical force a la Samuel Beckett. Consequently, when starkly confronted with the ineluctable fact of the Monster-of-Sirte being the crux of the current state of mayhem and political stasis in Libya, Mr. Zuma chose the morally embarrassing path of reform. And on the latter score, perhaps, what the levelheaded leaders among the hulking membership of the African Union (AU) – assuming there are any such entities – ought to have asked of their colleague is why Mr. Mandela and his gallant cohorts of the African National Congress (ANC) had not simply demanded benign, or partial, structural reforms from the erstwhile white-minority Nationalist Party, rather than universal suffrage and the total extirpation of apartheid political culture.
In essence, here again, the legitimacy of Mr. Gaddhafi’s leadership and his government, in the opinion of the South African premier, ought to be squarely predicated on the remarkable material assistance proffered by the Libyan strongman to both the military and political wings of the ANC. The right of the Libyan people to the same democratic culture that presently prevails in Pretoria has absolutely no functional basis in Libyan political culture. For, at least in Tripoli, unlike the erstwhile Apartheid South Africa, the monster is an indigenous domestic breed and, therefore, relatively benign and more acceptable.
Anyway, it is interesting to recall that in the wake of the “Arabo-Libyan Spring” that rocked the Gaddhafi regime, beginning in mid-February, some media reports bespoke of the National Democratic Congress government of Ghana gleefully looking forward to severely disciplining any Ghanaian returnees who had either been known or suspected to have weighed in on the side of the anti-Gaddhafi rebels.
Needless to say, we see the same level of cynicism regarding the vicious contents of a videotape that Mr. Rawlings has been brandishing and loudly and cockily claiming to contain forensic evidence that is sure to effectively nail the suspected assassins of the late overlord of Dagbon, Ya-Na Yakubu Andani II. Now we learn from Attorney-General Martin Amidu, after these several months of anticipation, that, in fact, the alleged videotape contains absolutely nothing that remotely approaches what might aptly be termed as the smoking gun, or the DNA equivalent of forensic evidence but, actually, just the hallucinatory figment of the imagination of the man who would have his wife and partner-in-crime rule Ghana from their suspiciously gutted bedroom in the Ridge section of Accra (See “Rawlings’ Ya-Na Tape is Useless” Ghanaweb.com 6/13/11).
According to Attorney-General Amidu, Mr. Rawlings’ Ak-47 on the Ya-Na regicide is no assault rifle at all, but hearsay evidence, manufactured long after that tragic and horrible event by somebody claiming to be a cousin of the late Dagbon overlord. And guess who the conduit of such forensic poppycock of a narrative is, but the very boot-blacking Mr. Victor Smith, whom the same Mr. Rawlings, literally, kicked to the curb on grounds that “Prague Joe” had outlived his usefulness by seeming to prefer Tarkwa-Atta over the Emperor of Sogakope. Wonders, it has been said, will never cease. Indeed!
Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Ph.D., Jr., 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) and author of “The Obama Serenades” (Lulu.com, 2011).