If reports indicating that potential National Democratic Congress (NDC) delegates staunchly in favour of the presidential candidacy of Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings are being peppered with sticks and carrots or, better yet, bribery and intimidation, then nothing could be more seasonable (See “NDC Delegates Bribed, Intimidated Not To Endorse Konadu Forms – Teye Nyaunu” Adomonline.com 5/12/11).
This, of course, is definitely in character with the kind of precedence crudely set by former President Jerry John Rawlings, founding patriarch of the ruling National Democratic Congress and husband of the career First Lady who is seeking to unseat the very man whom her own husband thrice presented to both the members and supporters of the party that has conveniently and opportunistically designated Mr. Rawlings as its Founding Father and Peremptory Elector, and the nation at large, as the second-best personality to take the NDC to the glorious height of “democratic” entrenchment.
And, needless to say, throughout his two terms as presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress, no party member of distinction and/or good standing attempted to run against the former strongman without risking the full-leaden wrath of the entire NDC constabulary for what would have summarily been deemed to have been tantamount to outright sacrilege!
And in what has come to be canonized as the infamous Swedru Declaration, Mr. Rawlings pontifically anointed the now-President John Evans Atta-Mills as the man singularly qualified in perpetuity to immediately follow the former in political ascendancy into Mr. Kofi Antubam’s praetor’s chair. Thus, if it is, indeed, true that the Mills-Mahama camp has launched a scorched-earth campaign against the presidential candidacy of Nana Yaa Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings in the run-up to Election 2012, this is only purely in keeping with a remarkably long-standing tradition established by the brazen contender’s own husband.
And so what members, supporters and sympathizers of the so-called National Democratic Congress ought to be worried about is not the widely alleged fact that Mrs. Rawlings’ vaulting ambition for the presidency appears to have met with an equally formidable countervailing force but, rather, the glaringly curious fact that the unquestionably disciplinarian Mr. “Procrustes” Rawlings appears to be facilely relenting enough to have his wife casually breach what has come to be incontrovertibly recognized as that which culturally differentiates the ruling National Democratic Congress from its more relatively chaotic and rambunctious ideological opponent and primary political nemesis, the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
For while since the inception of Ghana’s Fourth-Republican democratic dispensation, Mr. Rawlings has been insistent on his immutable belief in party discipline, or “organized democracy,” rather than the sort of abject “political rat-racing” or chaotic jockeying for power which is the virtual dietary fare among members of the opposition New Patriotic Party, nonetheless, in recent months, Mr. Rawlings has been self-righteously pontificating about the need for radical changes and a thorough reorientation of the way and manner in which the party that uniquely bears his spirit, spitting image and his steely revolutionary resolve is being run by some wishy-washy Jesus freaks.
Naturally, some who appear to be of religious bent have characterized the “Rawlings-Mills Armageddon” as one that is fundamentally over the “soul” of the pseudo-Marxist National Democratic Congress, which makes one quaintly wonder what the great eponymous nineteenth-century Germanic-Jewish thinker would make of it, if he were to be living in our time and lecturing at Ghana’s flagship academy, the University of Ghana. The answer, of course, may not be quite as far-fetched as it may seem, since Professor Karl Marx does not appear to have any remarkably factored into the proverbial equation of his purely materialist exegesis, any peculiar phenomenon called the “African Soul,” or the “African Personality”
Anyway, Mrs. Rawlings’ main headache appears to largely entail having to successfully win the endorsement of at least two NDC delegates in every one of the 230 constituencies dotted across the country. So far, her Amen Corner lackeys, led by the notorious Lower-Manya Krobo MP Mr. Michael Teye Nyaunu, are beaming with effervescent smiles and claiming that their delegate solicitation campaign has been “very favorable,” although they are, paradoxically, not letting on any specific figures to a quite curious public.
At the same time, however, Mr. Nyaunu is also promising to “officially notify the elections committee of the NDC about the brazen bribery and intimidation” that flagrantly appear to have become the stock-in-trade of the Mills-Mahama presidential reelection campaign.
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
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 Insttutie (DI) and the author, most recently, of “The Obama Serenades” (Lulu.com, 2011).