It was Apostle Paul who said he had every right to do whatever he wanted, but that it was not everything that was expedient for him. The Great warrior and Conqueror, Julius Caesar once remarked that ?Caesar?s wife must be above suspicion?.
Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11 is the current occupant of the Golden Stool (Sika Agua Kofi) He is the overlord of the Great Ashanti Kingdom which resisted all attempts by the British to bring the kingdom into subjugation.
Numerous attempts have been surreptitiously and made by various governments since independence to erode the powers and influence of the Asantehene. But all those attempts failed woefully. We remember late President Mills?s phobia of the ?Great Ashanti Project? and late Kofi Awoonor?s attempts to denigrate the people of Ashanti in his infamous book titled ?The Ghana Revolution- My Personal Perspective?.
The most startling revelation in the book was Kofi Awoonor?s open declaration that he was first and foremost an Ewe before him being a Ghanaian. Then came his ethnocentric declaration` ??That the Nkrumah?s Government fell because of the presence of corrupt Ashanti elements in the CPP Government. And late President Mills felt the best thing he could do to unite the country was to award the tribal bigot and warlord an ex-gratia by appointing him Chairman of the Council of State.
The Government of the Nefarious Destructive Cancer once again attempted to reduce the power and influence of the Asantehene by circumventing the route to permanent peace when it chose the surest route to Golgotha with the sole aim of victimizing only Abudus in the Ya Na?s murder saga.? Abudus were arrested and put before the law courts on trumped up charges of being accessory to the crime of murdering the Ya Na. That option failed and the accused persons were acquitted and discharged. The NDC Government then sought for a safe and soft landing lace.? It referred the matter back to the Committee of Eminent Chiefs headed by Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11. ?Happily, Otumfuo never fell for the bait.
But the actions and inactions of the Overlord of the AshantiKingdom in recent times have confounded even his most ardent and vocal admirers/supporters. Let me say from the bottom of my heart that I strongly support the numerous pragmatic attempts by Otumfuo in reforming some of the archaic cultural practices of the people to bring them in line with the modern trend of affairs. Because of the zeal with which he has been pursuing these challenges, Chieftaincy, together with most of its attendant practices is no longer looked upon as being anachronistic.
But that does not mean that I will join the band of sentimentalism that is hovering around Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11. The Public Relations Outfit at Manhyia has not helped matters at all. A few years ago, a similar incident involving the use of Otumfuo ?name surfaced in the country and the Manhyia PR Outfit did not live up to expectations.
On that occasion a fraudulent Organization used Otumfuo name to dupe hundreds of unsuspecting Ghanaians who had wanted to go and study abroad. I did a write up on the issue.
You see, the actions taken by people very close to Manhyia as well as the rebuttal issued by the 15 Ashanti Chiefs were in a very bad taste. Why should Manhyia send thugs to go and manhandle the journalists at Kessbeen FM? What was their crime? That they had chosen to bring up the matter of Danger Boy Mahama using the Otumfuo as a conduit for bribing some Supreme Court Judges?? And the worst aspect of it all is that till date Manhyia has not deemed it fit to distance itself from the unprovoked attacks on two journalists.
Are the perpetrators of that barbaric act insinuating that we have reverted the State of Nature where might was the only instrument used to settle dispute? But were we all to revert to such barbaric way of settling scores the human race would be extinct within a matter of decades.
The irony of the whole situation is that a few years ago, Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11 publicly threatened to ?capture? the Techimanhene for ?arresting? and molesting the Tuobodomhene in the latter?s palace. I did a piece on the subject and strongly condemned the Techimanhene for such uncouth behavior. What about the threatening text messages those cowards sent to the ?condemned? journalists?
And again I ask ?what crime did the journalist commit?? That they had the guts to include Mahama?s alleged use of Otumfuo as the conduit for distribution of money to some supposedly corrupt justices of the Supreme Court on the just concluded Presidential Election Petition on the their newspaper review segment for that day!! And the Management of the FM Radio Station thought the most appropriate thing to do was to suspend the ?erring? presenters of their jobs.
It is a known fact that Otumfuo has been playing some laudable roles behind the scene, and unless some highly placed person told you, you would not believe it. We know for a fact that Otumfuo Osei Tutu attempted without success to broker peace between Ex-President Rawlings and the late President Mills. This fact was attested to by Ex-President Rawlings himself. We commend him for that laudable attempt.
Ex President Rawlings also narrated an incident in which the late ethnocentric Professor Kofi Awoonor had replaced the late President?s choice of an Ashanti for a particular position with somebody from the late Kofi Awoonor?s own tribe.
But as for this one dee, ibi as ibi ooo. I find it difficult to understand. I have been having serious arguments with some colleagues about the propriety or impropriety of using a Presidential jet to run errands for the Government. Is the Asantehene now the errand boy of a government which had earlier made frantic attempts to vilify and humiliate him?
Is it also true that Otumfuo had travelled aboard the private jet of Ibrahim Mahama, the President?s kid brother?? What time did the event take place, and for what purpose?
It is painful to staunch and vociferous followers of Otumfuo Osei Tutu II to hear that the person they very much admire is engrossed in one form of controversy or the other. ?One would have thought that our revered Chief would exercise a little bit of circumspection when the offer of the Presidential jet for his use was made. The issue is not as simple as some people would like to portray it to the outside world. It therefore cannot be waved away with a mere wave of the hand. The allegation of Otumfuo complicity in the bribery of the Supreme Court Justices touches on the very soul of our dear country.
Now, let us analyze this simple scenario. You?ve just been accused of being the conduit through which huge sums of money have been given to some justices of our apex court. The alleged ?ex-gratia? was looted from the state treasury by the Presidency and given to our revered chief for onward transmission to those involved in the miscarriage of justice, so goes the allegation. One would have thought that Otumfuo Osei Tutu would distance himself from the Presidency for the time being so as not to give credence to such an allegation which borders on treasonable felony.
But no, Otumfuo and his Ahithophel of advisers without caution jumped into the fray of controversy and swallowed the bait by first travelling aboard the personal plane of the President?s kid brother who is alleged to be responsible for the collapse of Merchant Bank. Not satisfied with that act of indiscretion, he travelled aboard the Presidential Jet, which in the real sense of the word, belongs to the Ghana Air Force. It was the mother of all ?recklessness? and this broke the back bone of the numerous admirers of the Ashanti over-lord. Then we all fell and what a great fall it was!
Why, Nana? Why should you break our hearts? Why, I ask the question again. Was it expedient for you to accept that Greek Gift when it was offered you by a discredited government headed by a man who has resisted all attempts to allow any investigation into the mysterious death of his Predecessor? Why, Otumfuo? Have you forgotten so soon the numerous orchestrated attempts to cut you to size and reduce your level of influence amongst your subjects?
Nana, remember how the late Ignatius Kutu Acheampong attempted to use your predecessor, Otumfuo Opoku Ware 11 to foist the Union Government concept on Asanteman and the whole of the country. This fact is not lost on Ghanaians and it would do well for you to tread carefully on the dangerous terrain that you have unwittingly fallen into. One walks cautiously in the midst of one?s enemies. Is that not what the Holy Books teach us? After all, the death of former President Mills under mysterious and bizarre circumstances has proved to us that brotherhood does not exist in the dictionary of the Nefarious Destructive Cancer.? In that contraption, dog eats dog. Nothing more!
Yes, we must delve deep into the alleged bribery issue in other to arrive at the heart of the matter. ?If it is ascertained that something uncanny had taken place to pervert justice, perpetrators of such heinous crime against mother Ghana should be punished. Yes, Ghanaians must insist on that. Lets all put aside all sentiments and partisanship to ensure that never again shall we allow a band of brigands to hold the entire country to ransom. After all, as the people of Warri in Delta State of Nigeria would say, ?they no de garri us? (They do not feed us). If anyone stages a constitutional coup against mother Ghana, that person, no matter how highly placed he/she is must be made to face the full rigours of the law.
Now, there are few posers for Manhyia to answer in order to set the records straight. Refusal to provide answers will not do the Palace any good. ?The Palace would do well to explain to Ghanaians whether or not Otumfuo?s Osei Tutu travelled aboard the private jet of the President?s kid brother and for what purpose. Couldn?t Otumfuo have chosen an alternate means of travelling? When was the trip? Was it before or after the Supreme Court verdict?
Again, which of the two parties first initiated the idea of putting the Presidential jet at the disposal of Otumfuo? Was it the Presidency or Manhyia? Was that the first time such an offer had been made? If Manhyia had rejected similar offers why did it accept this particular one? Was there any string attached? What was the purpose of the trip? ?Did Otumfuo seek advice from Asanteman Council before embarking on such a trip? By accepting to go on an image cleansing mission for the President, was Otumfuo not usurping the offices and trappings of powers of some of the President?s Ministers and advisers? Would that not breed bad blood between the Presidency and the Palace? Was that fact pointed out to the Otumfuo by his advisers and Council members?
I am disgusted at the fact that Management of the FM Station did the unthinkable by suspending the presenters. What was their offence?? ?An allegation has been made against Otumfuo. The onus is on the Otumfuo to prove his innocence. After all, was it not what they told ex-President Kufuor when he asked his accusers and those of his ministers to provide evidence? What did the NDC then in opposition not say about that statement? They said that was the first axiom of any first year law student that the accused person should give reasons as to why he is not guilty.
I am happy that the originator of the allegation says he has facts to buttress his allegation. The same applies to the Editor of the Free Press Newspaper. I used to channel my writings through the paper for publication. The paper was the first to give me a platform to publish my articles 2005. At that time, the Managing Editor, Mr Claude Decker told me of the financial crisis he was facing to keep the newspaper afloat.? Baby Ansabah of the New Punch also expressed similar sentiments. When the NDC came to power, the two made overturns to the new Government which gave them some life line. ?That was when the split came. They two went to the stables of the Nefarious Destructive Cancer while I chose to remain with the New Patriotic Party.
The last time I saw Mr Claude Decker and Emma Lawson, his wife, the two had done well for themselves. I told them so.
Would Manhyia be honest to let Ghanaians know the number of times the Palace had been in touch with the Presidency, Rev Asante Antwi, Chairman of the National Peace Council, Justices of the Supreme Court on the Election Petition and finally, Dr Afari Djan?? We would also be interested in knowing when such conversations took place and their duration. If the conversation amongst these interested parties had become rampant particularly the period just before the verdict, the palace and the parties would do well to explain to us why it was so.
I would also like to use this medium to appeal to the National Communications Authority to let us have a record of conversations amongst/between all or any of the interested parties. We would want to get to the root of the matter and the regulatory body should not be a clog in our progressive forward march to rid the country of all parasites and elements of Boko Haram in our midst.
Again, the Regulators of our Communications Networks should also unravel the identities of the scallywags and Al-Qaeda members who sent out threatening messages to the Presenters of Kessben Radio Station for daring to fish in troubled waters. This would send strong signal to those who choose to hide under the umbrella of anonymity to threaten law abiding citizens in the country for daring to tread at places where angels at times refuse to go. I have been there before and so know what I am saying.
The Sim Card Registration Exercise was meant to check such things and if the National Communications Authority wants to be doing a decent job, they would do well to fish out these criminals in our midst. I therefore challenge the body to act very fast and bring such criminals to book. ?No Sim card can be registered in the country without the presentation of any one of these documents – National Identification Card, NHIS Identity card, Ghanaian Passport or Drivers License. So the identities of those who sent out such threatening messages could be easily ascertained from the regulatory body.
My humble appeal goes to those highly placed personalities in the society who are alleged to be involved in the bribery scandal. Please, for the sake of humanity and the one True God whom we worship, spill the beans and let us know the truth. Ghana belongs to all us all.
Otumfuo Osei Tutu, before the sacred stools of your ancestors which you swore to always speak the truth, an opportunity is hereby presented you to tell them how faithful you have kept that oath. There can no longer be any such opportunity. The time to do so is now!
And to our President, you too have sworn an oath to abide by the Constitution of the land. Offering bribe to pervert the course of justice is an anathema to the very constitution you swore to abide and defend. Ghanaians want to know your role in the bribery saga? Did you send Otumfuo to deliver money to some justices of the Supreme Court?
Afari Djan has a big question to answer, for he is ?the troubler of Israel?. If he had acted in a sincere manner, we wouldn?t have been in the quagmire we found ourselves. He is therefore the solution to our electoral impasse. But would he be bold and tell Ghanaians the truth ? nothing but the whole truth? Can he look Ghanaians in the face, thump his chest and shout, ?Yes, indeed I have done the job that was entrusted into my care without any fear or favour?.
And to our Justices of the Supreme Court, would they also come out to tell Ghanaians to the face that they discharged their responsibilities with a clear conscience and that they would readily defend their judgement when summoned before the people?s court.
And to our Reverend Minister who doubles as the President of the Methodist Church of Ghana and also Chairman of the National Peace Council, the onus lies on him as a most faithful subject of the most High God not to be led by the devil to recreate an ignoble scenario similar to what befell biblical Ananias.? Reverend Asante Antwi, like the Asantehene, Otumfuo 0Osei Tutu 11 has ample opportunity to put smiles back on the faces of Ghanaians by telling them the truth, nothing but the whole truth. Reverend Asante Antwi, would you be able to stand before Baba god and say ?Lord, I have faithfully discharged the assignment you entrusted into my hands without fear or favour. I have no knowledge of any bribery or attempt to bribe anybody by any earthly power or authority. I have and will always abide by your commandments to always speak the truth?.
?The path crosses the River and the River crosses the Path. Which is the elder? Our elders found the River when they were making the path?. Our elders also say that ?A house built with spittle will not stand?.
A word to the wise is enough. I have spoken.
Daniel Danquah Damptey (0243715297) [email protected]