Opinion

Rhetorical bombast is not social intervention

he caption of the article was as follows: “Social Intervention Debate: Omane Boamah Replies Bawumia” (Modernghana.com 10/24/18). I had two problems with this caption. The first of these regarded the fact that the former Mahama-appointed Communications Minister was not in any way rejoining or responding to Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia’s indisputably pointed and irrefutable statement to a London, UK, chapter of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) that in the 8-year period – from January 2009 to January 2017 – when the operatives of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) held the democratic reins of governance, not a single “social intervention” program was implemented to shore up the quality of life of the average Ghanaian citizen.

There is no debate or contest here because Dr. Bawumia’s assertion is squarely based on verifiable facts on the ground, as it were. consequently, one could not but feel pity for Dr. Edward Kofi Omane Boamah, when the trained physician turned career politician wistfully asserts that former President John Agyekum-Kufuor’s signature legacy, the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), was actually the handicraft of the Rawlings-led antecedent regime of the National Democratic Congress. No such contention could be more preposterous because it was during the tenure of Chairman Jerry John Rawlings that the Social Darwinian dog-eat-dog healthcare policy of “Cash-and-Carry” or “Kawukudi” NDC-style became a household terminology in Ghana. I mean, we are talking about highway robbery here.

The latter cold-calculated NDC healthcare policy rubbed me raw because I personally had to bail out an 87-year-old relative who could not foot his medical bills and had therefore been condemned to die the painful death of poverty and destitution by those cynical, callous and double-salary drawing kleptocrats, including Dr. Omane Boamah, of course, who mischievously style themselves as “Social Democrats.” You see, in the clinically blighted imagination of the ’Kwawu-’Bomeng native, President Kufuor merely tweaked and fine-tuned the healthcare policy of the Rawlings regime and gave it a more palatable name.

This is an inexcusably criminal assertion for Dr. Omane Boamah to make. But it gets predictably rather amusing, when the man who once defied a Supreme Court decision, in the landmark matter of Okudzeto-Ablakwa, Omane Boamah vs. Obetsebi-Lamptey, with the flagrant and brazen support of then-President John Evans Atta-Mills, asserts that the selective and staggered distribution of one-size-fits-all school uniforms to pupils whose parents and guardians could scarcely afford to pay their school fees, a more far-reaching destiny determinant, was the best social-intervention policy initiative to have been implemented by any Fourth-Republican government. Now, let’s talk about cheap vote-getting policy initiatives.

Now, add the distribution of Tampons or sanitary pads and the politically skewed distribution of cheaply made sandals for elementary school pupils, and you begin to fully appreciate the incurably primitive and pathological mental levity of these NDC operatives. But what rankled me more than any other of his nauseatingly silly apologetics was Dr. Omane Boamah’s rather scandalous assertion that the fee-free Senior High School policy initiative implemented by President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has been an integral part of Ghana’s Fourth-Republican Constitution since 1992 and, implicitly, was therefore nothing new. Here, again, it does not get any more disingenuous and fatheaded when the former Mahama Communications Minister, on the one hand, asserts that the Constitution counsels the “progressive implementation” of the fee-free SHS policy initiative, while within the same breath Nana Akufo-Addo’s sometime archnemesis accuses the President of only progressively implementing the fee-free SHS educational system while erroneously and, one presumes, deviously touting the same as a wholesale or universal implementation of the fee-free SHS policy initiative.

Maybe somebody needs to tell this criminal scofflaw that he simply cannot eat his “Ofam” (ripe-plantain pudding) and have it intact as well. The days of the deathly culture of silence when the Rawlings-chaperoned operatives of the Provisional/National Democratic Congress did all the talking, and the rest of us wretched of the earth did all the listening and pretended to be nitwits, are well behind us.

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

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD

English Department, SUNY-Nassau

Garden City, New York

E-mail: [email protected]

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