He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass if he would reach heaven; for everyone has need to be forgiven — Lance Morrow.
It was Akwasi Ampofo Agyei, who said in one of his songs that “Emmere dane” meaning time changes. How true. Today, the leadership of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is calling upon its members to defend themselves if they come under unjustified attacks from members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP). In 2009 and 2012, it was supporters of the New Patriotic Party who came under baseless attacks from loyalists of the NDC. Time indeed has changed.
Thankfully, the police have explained that some of the incidents are not rooted in partisan politics. It is equally gratifying that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has condemned such acts as abominable and alien to Ghanaians. That is how things must be so that we all begin to do things right. We have to collectively fight the era of impunity in the name of partisan loyalty.
We should not play the ostrich about what happened in 2009 and 2012 when fundamentalists and sycophants parading under partisan loyalty subverted the rule of law and took the law into their own hands. However, the fact is that then as now, there were some of us who condemned such lawless and deviant acts. That is why we should not encourage any impunity from whatever source because that cannot be part of constitutional democracy.
We should thus not exaggerate things and attribute every imaginable crime to partisanship as a way of giving a dog a bad name so that we would be justified in calling for it to be hanged.
We must never forget that all we have is Ghana. This country belongs to all of us. We must be treated equal before the law. If we had been consistently firm in dealing with bestialism from party sycophants in the past, no one would have got the courage to continue to think that once a party wins an election, its supporters become more Ghanaian with superior rights than members of the other political parties.
In 2012, we did not act swiftly to stem the tide, but we have opportunity to begin afresh. There should be no turning back on the crackdown of politically partisan motivated violence. The good thing is that we are still under the NDC Administration and the incoming administration is ready and willing to cooperate in dealing with such lawless acts. Hopefully, when the NPP assumes office in 2017, it would deal with any residual occurrences and ensure that justice prevails.
It is also important that the President-elect puts to shame those who are circulating the spurious statement of diabolical plans by some cohorts of Nana-Akufo Addo to promote an Akyem political hegemony, including the puerile comment that the Okyenhene would be elevated above the Asantehene. These vicious lies must not be allowed to fester. Some have already commented on the rumour as if there is some truth in it. We do not need such vile wickedness and divisiveness.
Another matter which must see justice is the issue of the interdiction of COP Patrick Timbilla. Many Ghanaians heard the accusations made against him but we do not know whether he was proven guilty or otherwise. It does not matter whether he has reached the compulsory retirement age; justice must be seen to have been done in his case. We deserve to know the truth so that we would stop any speculations. More important, there is the need to give COP Dr George Akufo Dampare his due.
The time has come for all of us to appreciate the need to put our nation first. That is the way to strengthen democracy and constitutionalism, promote effective national integration and social cohesion. However, because of the bitterness engendered in some of us who were side-lined merely on the basis of partisan political allegiance, it might not be easy for all of us to accept that things must be what they are, especially where it was apparent that processes and procedures had been undermined and some have been jumped over.
No one must also presume that in terms of purely political positions, the majority party does not have the men and women to do the job and talk about inclusiveness as if political party philosophy does not matter. It is imperative for public and civil service jobs to be reserved for professionals whilst capable political activists and functionaries are appointed to purely political offices.
The devotion, loyalty, sacrifices and commitment of party supporters and members must have place and recognition even under inclusiveness. Those who toiled for the success of the party and have demonstrable competence must of necessity be rewarded with political office appointment.