Tuesday, August 28, 2012

On the 45 new constituencies: What is the NPP afraid of? (Part II)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012
I am particularly disappointed at Kufuor’s conduct. If his main reason is the timing of this action by the EC, one will be less harsh on him. But there is more to it, which suggests that he doesn't know what he is talking about. Here is his main concern:
“Why should the Commission insist on creating 45 new constituencies on the eve of the election when we have only three months to go?”
Then, he comes across as a trouble maker by passionately appealing to the “Electoral Commission and to all the parties across the board to be careful nobody plants a time bomb [in the country] between now and the elections” (Ghanaweb, 8/27/12).
Baseless paranoia. Haven’t prospective voters already been registered to be able to cast their ballot wherever they are? Or won’t it be possible for voters to transfer their votes across constituency lines as has been happening all over the years?
Kufuor will save himself from further embarrassment if he zips his mouth on such issues. He shouldn’t join the band of pessimists to create any problem for the EC. Left alone, the EC can do its legitimate duty to organize/supervise the general elections competently as it has done many times in this 4th Republic.
Kufuor is joining his NPP activists to create a bad name for the EC and, therefore, render it incredible. Then, when the elections go against the NPP, they will have a motivation to cause mayhem, guided by their “All-die-be-die” nonsense. This is part of the NPP’s grand agenda. But it won’t materialize because the larger majority of Ghanaians won’t toe their line.
My main worry with the creation of the new constituencies lies elsewhere, which is the general performance of Parliament itself. I am not in the least happy that we have such a non-performing Parliament of 230 members to which an additional 45 will be added.
Apart from the heavy wage bill and general expenditures to be made in support of Parliament, there is also concern that our MPs are more self-centred than interested in performing functions to solve pertinent national problems. Evidence abounds of their greed and penchant for pettiness, which is why public confidence in Parliament has waned drastically.
Why has it been difficult for Parliament to pass important laws, including the all-important Right to Information to improve media work in the country? How about other aspects of national life that need laws to regulate, especially within the context of the obnoxious judgement debt payment syndrome?
Added to this concern is the involvement of MPs in criminal acts without being punished, which creates the impression that Parliament is an authority unto itself and can shield wrongdoers in its fold. That is not encouraging enough to warrant all that goes into supporting the Legislature.
To me, any effort to improve the work of our MPs must be taken, devoid of partisan political intrigues. What the NPP has begun doing in respect of the EC’s creation of new constituencies isn’t an effort to support at all. It is wayward and indicative of a political front that treats all others with contempt. I see no reason for this concerted effort to cause panic and undermine the EC’s integrity.
As the CI 73 is returned to Parliament for further action, we will wait to see whether the NPP Minority in Parliament will confirm our  suspicion of their complicity in this concerted move by their leadership in the NPP to cause needless tension.
But if this NPP-led agitation is placed within its context of “All-die-be-die” as the mentality that motivates the party’s preparations for Election 2012, we shouldn’t be left scratching our heads any more. Such an attitude won’t promote our democracy. It is just like saying that if they don’t win the elections, then, the EC must be blamed. This kind of mentality should have no place in our contemporary politics.
The EC needs our support to help it perform its responsibilities without blemish. It doesn’t need anything of the sort that the NPP has begun unleashing. Those in the new constituencies will applaud efforts to bring democracy closer to them. That’s what we must appreciate.
·         E-mail: mjbokor@yahoo.com
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