Asiedu-Nketia, Neutrality Is Not Passivity

Asiedu Nketia

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

I know those brash and cantankerous operatives of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) are pants-peeing nervous to see the most distinguished and responsible leaders and thinkers of Ghanaian society massively gravitate towards the relatively more progressive leaders of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP). But that is a phenomenon over which none of us has any control. In any democratic society, the preferences and/or choices that individuals and groups of citizens make pretty much depend on which political camps these citizens believe to best cater to their needs and interests.

Asiedu Nketia

I don’t know exactly what he means when General Mosquito counsels the clergy not to “soil” themselves with partisan politics (See “Pastors Must Be Neutral – Asiedu-Nketia” / 7/29/15). Does it, for example, mean that the clergy must sit duck or idle while partisan politics “soils” the moral fabric of our society and state, with greedy politicians and their cronies running the economy aground? I sincerely don’t think so! For were that the case, the Constitution would have forbidden members of the clergy from the active exercising of the franchise or the right to vote. I also sincerely do not believe that the clergy ought to bury their heads in the sands of calculated oblivion, while bitter and volatile infighting simmers in either of the two major political parties, with the dire possibility of localized battles spilling into the national public arena.

It would then be too late to stanch the rupture of civil strife. And when that happens, it would be people like Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, the General-Secretary of the ruling National Democratic Congress, who would turn round and blame the same clergy for having “neutralized” the political culture of our country to death. Indeed, if the former deputy minister understood much that is progressive and constructive about Christian religious culture, he would have readily remembered Jesus Christ counseling the citizens of His day, irrespective of professional background or station in life, against a tepid and vapid existence of passivity and neutrality.

Neutrality naively presumes that all is well and good with society as it is. But, of course, we all know that it is the neocolonialist tradition of neutrality that has caused many a continental African clergyman or woman to unwisely pray for pathological dictators and corrupt politicians, knowing full well that these secular and “pagan” leaders – even the churchgoing ones among them – did not give a hoot about such healthy acts of spiritual enlightenment.

Even more important ought to be emphasized for the benefit of political mischief-makers like Mr. Asiedu-Nketia, that were global giants and “immortals” like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and his equally distinguished associate practitioners of the political philosophy of LIBERATION THEOLOGY to remain neutral to a racist and recalcitrant and morally decadent American society, African-Americans and recent African immigrants to the United States would still be marking time, or waiting to be afforded the right of citizenship and the franchise, let alone fathom being voted into the White House by liberal and conscientious white-Americans!

Well, if, as it is clearly obvious, the Seikwa, Brong-Ahafo, native wants to be given the assurance of the political neutrality of prominent Christian religious leaders like Messrs. Mensa Otabil, Emmanuel Martey and G. C. Palmer-Buckle, then Mr. Asiedu-Nketia must rest assured that the decision by these remarkable scholars and thinkers to facilitate the prevalence of harmony among the executive ranks of the New Patriotic Party, has absolutely nothing inimical against, or towards, the well-being and welfare of the National Democratic Congress’ leaders and their supporters and sympathizers.

Being jittery and perplexed about where these Christian religious leaders choose to offer their help and/or expertise is decidedly a non-issue. And we think and sincerely believe that this ought not to become either the business or the problem of anybody, in particular our main political and ideological opponents. For, let’s get real: no rules or regulations or laws have been broken here.

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York

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