Monday, 24 October 2016

Why Is The PPP Looking The EC's Gift Horse In The Mouth?

"Any one who has gumption knows what it is, and any one who hasn't can never know what it is. So there is no need of defining it."
      - Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942).

Sometimes one finds it incredibly hard to understand some Ghanaian politicians.

Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom has been given a golden opportunity by the Electoral Commission (EC), to help clean up our nation's politics.

Yet, it would appear that his party, the Progressive People's Party (PPP), does not recognise what is a godsend opportunity, for what it actually is.

They ought to be demanding that all political parties in Ghana should publicly publish the sources of their funding. Ditto tell Ghanaians that the PPP 's role in Ghanaian politics is to help Nduom bring the best Ghanaians to work together to make Ghana prosperous - irrespective of their political backgrounds.

The point needs to made, that unlike all the other parties, the PPP is not a political party seeking to rule Ghana exclusively.

So, in effect, trying to stop Nduom from running  for president, is tantamount to denying Ghanaians the opportunity to unite and work together, under a transparent leader heading a political party funded in transparent fashion, to transform their nation - which is why the party's members will not allow him to be denied the opportunity to run for president: as patriotic Ghanaians who love their nation.

And Nduom himself, should make that clear to the nation, at every campaign rally he attends - in his usual measured  and calm way of making points in debates.

Will that not contrast sharply with the strange silence - on that all-important issue of making public, the sources of their parties' candidates' filing fees and their election campaign funds - by both President Mahama and Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo:  who dare not discuss such things publicly, ever?

Would that not show Ghanaians the difference between the transparently funded PPP, and the other opaque parties that prefer to hide where their funds come from - because doing so will reveal the vested interests they are beholden to: which fund them on a quid pro quo basis so they can all "Chop Ghana small" together?

The question is: Is the opacity in the funding of political parties not a major reason why high-level  corruption still persists in Ghana?

Ghanaians now have an opportunity, through well-mannered advocacy by the PPP, to force the EC to get the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the New Patriotic Party (NPP), to tell Ghanaians precisely where and how they obtained their candidates' filing fees.

The question there is: On what basis is the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) demanding to know the source of the PPP's filing fees for the party's presidential and parliamentary candidates?

Did the EC ask the EOCO to investigate the sources of the PPP's candidates' filing fees? If it did, then why did it not, and why does it not, do same, for all the candidates standing in December's presidential and parliamentary elections? The courts must force the EC to use that same yardstick for all the presidential candidates - or drop that criterion and reinstate Nduom and Hassan Ayariga.

The PPP ought to demand, on behalf of the good people of Ghana, that the EC must apply the same yardstick to every political party fielding candidates in the December elections. They must all tell Ghanaians where their candidates' filing fees came from. Period.

The PPP should also demand that the EC insists that a forensic audit ought to be conducted into the submitted accounts, of all the political parties participating in this year's elections.

That way, we can all be sure that there has not been any creative Kweku-Ananse-accounting, in the audited accounts that political parties have submitted to the EC.

Finally, the PPP should follow U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt's advice: "Speak softly but carry a big stick."

They must be cool, calm and collected: No one in the Ghana of today can destroy Nduom's business empire. That can never happen. The EOCO must tread cautiously - and be loyal to Mother Ghana in this instance: not to those now in power.

Ordinary Ghanaians will not allow Nduom's business empire to be destroyed, under any circumstances.  His talent for creating wealth, and his extraordinary  ability to create jobs in difficult economic conditions, have made him a folk hero, throughout our homeland Ghana.

Most Ghanaians  instinctively know that Nduom is the only political leader in Ghana, today, with the nous and gumption to actually transform their country into an African equivalent of the egalitarian societies of Scandinavia.

So, instead of endless rowdy demonstrations, which  might put some people off their party, let the PPP rather tie the EC up in the law courts, till it applies the same standards it applied in Nduom's case, to all the presidential candidates' of the other parties - especially those of the corruption-riddled NDC/NPP duopoly.

Above all, with respect, no matter how brilliant they might be as lawyers, it simply does not make sense to let lawyers who are staunch NPP members, to represent Nduom in this matter. Is it not Nduom's committment to investigating all the regimes that have governed Ghana since the 4th Republic came into being, which has led to the conspiracy by the system to eliminate him from the presidential election, I ask?

The PPP ought to understand that it is neither in the interest of the NPP, nor that of the NDC, that Nduom gets the courts to  force the EC to apply the same standards it demanded from him, to both those opaque political parties'presidential candidates - as their flagbearers would also then be disqualified from standing in the December presidential election.

The PPP must not look the EC's gift horse in the mouth. Let them rather use the opportunity it represents to force the NDC and NPP to publicly publish the sources of their election campaign funds - by demanding that of the EC and the two major parties on behalf of ordinary people.

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