By Alhaji Alhasan Abdulai
The democratic credential of Ghana soared very high when two notable political antagonists came face to face to analyze matters of importance to Ghana. The personalities are Johnson Asiedu Nketsia General Secretary of National Democratic Congress (NDC) popularly known as general mosquito and Kodjo Owusu Afriyie (sir john) former General Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP). Their meeting place was the studios of Joy Fm in Accra in the morning of Tuesday December 23, where the two were made to review the newspapers of the day in place of the regular panel made up of Nana Ansah Quao and co. Their performance showed that there was little difference between them and the regular panel following their ability to throw away partisanship for intellectualism and fairness in their discussions. To my surprise they showed respect to each other by being courteous, less antagonistic, and dogmatic but instead were frank in their utterances.
The first story they reviewed was the failure of the Attorney General or her representatives to appear in court to prosecute the alleged accomplices of Nayele Ametefe now standing trial in a cocain smuggling case in England. The accused persons (now on bail) needed to be granted bail but which was not to be. The panelists were unanimous in saying that the accused persons who were sent back to custody together with their defense counsels were given a raw deal with Asiedu Nketia saying given the importance of the case to the nation the attorney general?s representatives were expected to show seriousness in the case. Sir John being a lawyer dealt mildly with the attorney general?s personnel who he said might be busy attending to other cases in other courts hence their failure to be in court. He gave them the benefit of the doubt but advised them to show urgency in the high profile case. The human and fellow feeling in sir john showed up by him refusing to give his verdict before the matter is determined in court.
Other issues the panelists discussed were the call by the Trades Union Congress to the government to consider reducing the price of fuel on our markets; the slashing of the budget of parliament by 30 per cent by the presidency; and the alleged kick-back case against former minister of youth and sports Elvis Afriyie Ankrah and others in connection with the world cup matches in Brazil.
The good showing of the two men who were at each other?s throats in the run up to the presidential election in 2012 and later in the election petition case is remarkable. Their attitudes towards each other must serve as an example to the followers of the two main political parties, NDC and NPP as they are preparing to campaign for power in 2016. All party followers must fight for their parties in radio discussions and on political platforms. However, they must do so without resort to antagonism, physical and verbal attacks against their political opponents. The two leaders?, Sir John and General Mosquito must continue to pull their followers along as they discuss issues with humor, frankness and sober reactions without losing focus.
The one who placed the icing on the cake was Mr. Frank Nelson a director of Accra Hearts of Oak football club who through strenuous effort presented the news from the world of sports in place of the regular presenter George addy junior. He was given a pass mark but will be the first to tell how difficult to jump into the shoes of presenters who get criticized by listeners at least opportunity. In all we say kudos to joy FM for the good move to use notable personalities in their programs in connecting with the Christmas and New Year seasons
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