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24 February 2017

Ghana Gas is not owned by Nzema tribal chiefs

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Well, they simply cannot “kick against” President Akufo-Addo’s recent appointment of Dr. Ben Asante as the Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana National Gas Company, because the seven Nzema Paramount Chiefs said to be protesting Dr. Asante’s appointment have absolutely no mandate for doing so.

For one, the Ghana National Gas Company is not privately owned by any Nzema Chieftain, just as the former Ghana Cocoa-Marketing Board (GCMB) was never owned and exclusively operated by the chiefs and people of the seminal cocoa-producing areas of the country.

We must also underscore the fact that in presuming to foist a candidate of their preference on President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the seven Nzema chiefs, reportedly led by Awulae Kwame Agyemfi, could not have more offensively insulted the intelligence of the man constitutionally mandated to select and appoint the CEOs of state-owned and operated companies and corporations. What is obviously clear in their imperious attempt to foist Professor Sagary Nokoe on the President, is the fact that Dr. Asante is a non-ethnic Nzema, and not primarily because these agitators are credibly informed or certain of Professor’s Nokoe’s being intellectually and professionally superior to the man presently named to the job.

The fact that the choice of CEO of Ghana Gas by these Nzema chiefs is both an ethnic Nzema and a member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), have absolutely nothing to do with the fact of whether Professor Nokoe “understands the sociocultural, economic, security, political and environmental dynamics of the terrain” any more than Dr. Asante, by the mere fact or virtue of his non-Nzema Akan ethnicity, makes him more conversant with the cocoa- and gold- and diamond-mining areas of the country than, say, an ethnic Dagomba or a Frafra appointed to the same job. Not only is such mentality unpardonably regressive and benighted, it is also criminally preposterous, divisive and corrosive to inter-ethnic and cultural harmony in the country.

It is also both amusing and insulting when these Nzema chiefs claim to be in possession of credible information pointing to the fact of Dr. Asante’s being less qualified for the job of Ghana Gas’ CEO than Professor Nokoe. It is both amusing and insufferably insulting because it presupposes that President Akufo-Addo’s appointment of Dr. Asante was purely based on ignorance. But, of course, the real fact of the matter is that as President and Chief Executive of State, Nana Akufo-Addo has access to far better counsel, reliable intelligence and expert advice than any of these Nzema chiefs could boast of.

You see, under the tenures of the Mills- and Mahama-led National Democratic Congress’ governments, these Nzema chiefs could facilely be granted their whimsical and capricious wishes because the political life-blood of the Rawlings-minted National Democratic Congress has been thriving on ethnic chauvinism or tribalism since its founding some twenty-five years ago. Under President Akufo-Addo, Ghanaians can rest assured of all major political appointments being squarely predicated on professional merit, rather than ethnic supremacy or one’s regional origin.

 

Source: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D. English Department, SUNY-Nassau | okoampaahoofe@optimum.net

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