The editor of our esteemed paper and the author of this popular column is facing threats to his life from politicians, senior military officers and their agents.
We wish to assure our readers that in spite of the threats, this column and the author will survive by the Grace of God. We have a duty to inform, educate and entertain our cherished customers, and readers, both friends and foes. The column was started during the era of the NDC Administration of Professor Mills and Mr. John Mahama.
It had earlier been published in the Daily Searchlight from the first quarter of 2009. The column became extremely necessary owing to the vicious methods and strategies adopted by the Mills/Mahama Administration and the Military High Command at the time. Soon after the compulsory retirement of General JB Danquah in the last week of January 2009, the Mills/Mahama administration embarked upon a massive and intensive campaign of “purging the Armed Forces of senior officers perceived or suspected to be NPP sympathizers, members or collaborators.”
Several Brigadier Generals, Colonels and Lieutenant-Colonels were affected by this diabolical policy based on ethnocentrism and political vendetta. Most of the affected officers were from the Ashanti, BrongAhafo and Eastern regions (ABE Regions).
The likes of Brigadier Generals Okyere, Debrah, Nkrumah, Forkuo, Oppong Kyekyeku, Ocran, Adjei, Owusu-Ababio, Colonels Kumah, Damoah, Akyiaa-Gambrah, Appiah-Agyapong, Boampong, Opoku and Lieutenant Colonels Ababio Serebour and Ofosu-Anim, among others were hurriedly retired compulsorily.
It was in the midst of these developments and the sharp dichotomy of NDC officers against perceived NPP officers that our editor took it upon himself to investigate and report on those unhealthy and unhelpful developments. Thus, as a reporter of the Daily Searchlight then, our columnist embarked upon a crusade of redemption to protect the interests of the officers who were being persecuted by the NDC Administration and the Military High Command.
The hawks in the NDC who had elected themselves to work at the Castle without the prior approval of the outgoing Military High Command were calling the shots together with the likes of the Leba-Kamanyas, Nyakas, Agbekas, Gbebles, Adokpas, Adetis, Dovlos, Biekros, Iddrisus, Fuseinis, Akou-Adjeis, Seidu Adams, Komlagas and several others in destroying perceived NPP officers.
For instance, it is on record that between 3rd January and 6th January, 2009 when Professor Mills had become the President-elect of Ghana, then Lieutenant Colonel SK Adeti and Colonel Lawson both went to the Base Ordnance Depot (BOD) to collect ceremonial and other military uniforms and insignia signifying that both of them or at least one of them was to become the Aide-de Camp (ADC) of President JEA Mills. They had both made pronouncements to the effect that they had the authority to be the ADC.
Eventually, Colonel Lawson won the struggle by exploiting his previous attachment to the Castle in the Rawlings NDC when Nana Ato Dadzie was the Chief of Staff and Colonel Lawson was a Staff Officer.
These hawks in and outside the military were the ones who were determining the fate and professional careers of officers. They were callous, vindictive, treacherous and brutal.
Drawing on the main duties and responsibilities of responsible journalism (educate and inform), our columnist went to various barracks to check on the developments and to gather and articulate the reactions of the troops and to ventilate their concerns and the repercussions of those destructive policies and strategies on the cohesion of the Armed Forces, national unity and public interest.
Several publications were made in the Daily Searchlight starting from the initial suspension and eventual cancellation of the training of the four hundred and twenty (420) Army potential recruits. Press Releases from the Military High Command in the name of Colonel Nibo, the then Director of Public Relations, were published and analyzed. Appropriate interrogations of those press releases and subsequent radio interviews granted by Colonel Nibo exposed the hypocrisy, insincerity and fallacies in the policies and strategies of the NDC Administration of Mills and Mahama.
Our ace editor exposed the lies, falsehood and inconsistencies in the official position in the cancellation of the training of the 420 Army potential recruits. The answers provided by General JH Smith, the then Defence Minister, were exposed as ridiculous, incoherent, hypocritical and unsatisfactory. General JH Smith had been invited by Parliament to answer an urgent question on why the 420 Ghanaians were denied the opportunity to report for military training at Shai Hills on 31 January, 2009 as indicated in their invitation letters. The then Minister of Defence messed himself up so much in the follow-up questions to the urgent question in Parliament that he became a source of ridicule in the eyes of right thinking Ghanaians.
Our indefatigable editor, who was armed with all the relevant pieces of evidence on the previous procedures and decisions in the 2008 recruitment exercise, was able to educate members of the general public on the real intentions of the NDC Administration.
On the part of General JH Smith and others who claimed they suffered injustices at the hands of the NPP administration, it was time for retaliation and political vendetta.
General Smith had hoped that if Professor Mills had won the 2000 elections, he was going to be made the Chief of Defence Staff and General Anyidoho the Army Commander (Chief of Army Staff). Decisions and actions of the General Smiths, Koku Anyidohos were and are still actuated with malice because of the NPP’s victory in 2000. The NDC’s victory at the 2008 elections was an opportunity for those individuals to redeem all that they had lost.
Hence the atrocities, brutalities, vindictiveness and humiliations that were meted out to officers perceived to be NPP sympathizers. The mere perception of an officer to be linked to the NPP was enough grounds for the NDC to destroy such an officer. Officers who were lucky to survive the political genocide and were seen to be politically incorrect went through “hell”. They were in most cases sent to “Military Siberia” and stigmatized in very negative terms.
While this was happening to the “NPP officers”, the NDC officers were enjoying the “largesse of father Christmas”. The NDC officers were the heir apparents to the juicy appointments in the Ghana Armed Forces. All the sensitive and potentially lucrative appointments in the military went to those officers who were considered to be politically correct and ethnocentrically compliant.
By the negative theory of the NDC, all other officers who were not seen as active participants in the affairs of the NDC were classified as NPP members and had to suffer for that.
We could enumerate all the key appointments of the NDC in the military from the time of Professor Mills in January 2009 through Mr. Mahama’s injury time Presidency of July 2012 to January 2013 and the full time Presidency of Mr. John Mahama from 7th January, 2013 to 6th January, 2017 to show the extent of nepotism, discrimination, vindictiveness and victimization in the Ghana Armed Forces by then.
Our columnist, realizing the enormity of the task in informing and educating the general public and especially the NPP fraternity on the victimization of officers perceived to be NPP sympathizers, decided to break away from the Daily Searchlight to establish the “DAYBREAK” to show that we could no longer be in darkness when the pieces of evidence were readily available.
The objectives of the “new” newspaper was to draw attention to the occurrences in the military that were politically motivated in order to prop up the favorites of the NDC while destroying the career of officers considered to be sympathetic to the cause of the NPP. The struggle has been consistent and persistent.
The NPP was never spared in the NDC’s discriminatory practices in the Ghana Armed Forces. For instance, while officers belonging to the NDC could meet in the mess, offices and designated places to review their activities, strategies and tactics with impunity, they had set spies on officers and men perceived to be sympathizers of the NPP. Often times, these concocted reports compiled by the NDC apparatchiks were not vetted, not corroborated, nor verified and yet formed the basis of unfair decisions taken against officers considered to be sympathetic to the views of the NPP.
These “suffering NPP” officers had no “God fathers” to talk for them. They relied on the magnanimity of this column to articulate their concerns. That explains why a lot of officers and men on the “Exclusion List” of the NDC read this column to be abreast with developments in the military.
Most of our publications between 2009 and 2017 have cited specific examples to support the assertion that the NDC favoured its members, supporters, foot-soldiers, sympathizers, affiliates and their relations while it destroyed or frustrated the ambitions and career development of officers and men considered or perceived to be sympathizers of the NPP. Whereas it has always been easier for military members, supporters and sympathizers of the NDC to openly show their affiliation to and affinity for the NDC during the rule of His Excellency Mr. John Agyekum Kufuor and even now under the auspices of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the same cannot be said of officers and men who are perceived to be members or sympathizers of the NPP. NPP supporters, sympathizers or members (military and civilians) in the barracks have always been intimidated, oppressed, repressed and victimized by the NDC.
Consequently, the affected officers sympathetic to the cause of the NPP have been hiding and carrying the burden of being bullied and brutalized by the NDC.
To these oppressed and vulnerable members of the barracks community, the publications of the columnist provided satisfaction, succor, relief, comfort and a reliable mouthpiece for all their grievances woes and tribulations.
Imagine the mental torture that an officer goes through when his juniors are made his superiors in the same environment!!
Imagine the frustration that an officer goes through when all his colleagues (daft, average and below average) get promotions to higher ranks while he stagnates and gets humiliated in spite of the fact that this officer may be better in all respects (professional and academic) than the NDC “chosen ones”. There are instances where unqualified, undeserving, professionally inept, behaviorally and morally corrupt officers of the NDC fraternity are promoted to the enviable ranks of Colonel and Brigadier General and their equivalents while very upright, knowledgeable, experienced, matured and competent officers considered to be NPP sympathizers were marginalized. These practices by the NDC became the order of the day rather than an exception.
The publications by our columnist exposed the NDC and its propaganda to create semblance of equity, fairness, calm and unity in the Ghana Armed Forces in particular and the security services in general. The strategy used by the NDC, especially during the Presidency of Mr. John Dramani Mahama was spread through all the Security Services (National Security Secretariat, Bureau of National Investigations, Ghana Police Service, Ghana National Fire Service, the then Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) and now Ghana Revenue Authority). This ensured that most of the officers and men enlisted and recruited into the Security Services were predominantly NDC persons from the two major world banks of the party. This is a fact that is verifiable from records available at the Secretariats of all the Security Services.
It is not mere names that are used to assert these categorizations. It is from records provided by personnel of the respective Security Services that are used to establish these facts.
For instance, when Honorable Avoka, then Minister of Interior, decided to recruit over seventy people into the Ghana Immigration Service at the time that Ghana was training personnel for the Immigration Service of the Republic of Liberia, our ace columnist published it. Most of the people recruited were from Zebilla, Bolgatanga and Bawku areas of the Upper East Region. As the then Member of Parliament for Zebilla, Honorable Cletus Avoka ensured that he used his position as the Minister of Interior to maximum advantage.
The same strategy was used to inundate the Police Service, Fire Service and the Prisons Service, all as institutions under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Interior.
Appointments to positions of prominence and promotions associated therewith were done to the satisfaction of the NDC but to the chagrin and detriment of professionally trained personnel perceived to be sympathizers of the NPP.
The example of the current Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. David Asante-Apietu, was cited by our editor in support of the deliberate and demoralizing strategy of the NDC used against those considered to be sympathetic to the NPP. Mr. David Asante-Apietu had been promoted Deputy Commissioner of Police before 2008 and was by far senior to the Rose Bio-Atingas, Alhassans, Kudalors, Hamidus and others. Thus, those who were Assistant Commissioners of Police at the time that Mr. Asante-Apietu was a Senior Deputy Commissioner of Police became Commissioners of Police before him.
As an Akim officer promoted Deputy Commissioner of Police by the Kufuor Administration, Mr. Asante-Apietu was considered as a member of the NPP and was marginalized at the Headquarters at a time that the Alhassans, Hamidus and Rose Bio-Atingas were flying high.
A similar ill-treatment was meted out to Mr. AduPoku who was also a senior Deputy Commissioner of Police before some well-known NDC officers became Deputy Commissioners. Yet, just as happened in the case of Mr. Asante-Apietu, Mr. AduPoku had to mark time for the Atingas, Hamidus and others to be made Commissioners before finally he was also considered for promotion.
That explains why the Alhassans and Kudalors became Inspector General of Police before Mr. David Asante-Apieatu. But for the NPP’s victory in the December 2016 elections, Mr. David Asante-Apieatu, a very fine gentle, affable, knowledgeable and physically most suitable Commissioner of Police, would have been retired without getting the opportunity to rise to the most enviable position in the Ghana Police Service as its Inspector General.
Several examples abound in the military and have been cited by our editor in his numerous publications. The main objective of the editor was and is to ensure fairness and equity for those officers and men who were perceived by the NDC as NPP members and sympathizers. These officers and men have suffered incalculable injustices and ill-treatment at the hands of the NDC. It is only fair that they get restored to their appropriate and deserving appointments and promotions and not to lag behind their NDC colleagues who got accelerated promotions. That is proper and the right thing to do.
With the advent of the NPP Administration of His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo, the expectations had been that all those officers tagged as NPP sympathizers or members would be recognized, given their appropriate appointments and commensurate ranks.
Unfortunately, that was not to be. Those officers have had their dreams shattered. They are being frustrated all the more by the retention of the NDC appointed and promoted officers. The NDC officers are using their strengthened capacity (affirmation by the NPP Administration) to victimize the ever suffering officers perceived to be NPP sympathizers by the NDC and yet neglected and further marginalized by the NPP Administration owing to the unfettered freedom, authority and power that have been given to these known NDC officers operating from very sensitive and powerful positions given to them by the NPP Administration.
Naturally, a lot of officers and men are annoyed with the NPP Administration and are getting more and more dissatisfied, frustrated and disappointed in the NPP Administration of His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo.
So much has been done by the NPP Administration to improve upon the conditions and operational capacity of the Ghana Armed Forces within the relatively short period of time. The first major achievement of His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo is the payment of all the arrears on the Earned Dollar Allowances of Ghanaian troops on peacekeeping operations.Additionally, the allowances per day has been increased by $5 (five USD) by the Akufo-Addo Administration.
Several other packages have been provided by the President yet the “NDC saboteurs” are not bringing them into fruition. For instance, the President has directed that the salaries and allowances of the Civilian personnel of the Ghana Armed Forces should be enhanced and the expectations were that the amounts would be paid to the civilian employees before the end of August 2017.Unfortunately, as we write, that has not been done and the Civilian employees think that it is business as usual as the former President, Mr. John Mahama, made several of those promises but never fulfilled them.
We do not want that to happen to the NPP Administration of the His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo.
Again, on a couple of times, the payment of salaries and allowances of military and civilian personnel had been unnecessarily delayed up to points when the soldiers started agitating for action. When you have the Defence Financial Controller, the Commanding Officer, Forces Pay Regiment, the Chief of Staff (whose lawyer friend tells our editor that he is NPP), the Chief Director and the Accountant at the Ministry of Defence all being members of the NDC and hailing from the two major world banks, what reasonable inference could be made?
There is every indication that these NDC personnel holding very sensitive appointments in the Ghana Armed Forces and other Security Services are deliberately sabotaging the efforts of the NPP Administration. These revelations have to be made in order to draw attention of the appropriate authorities to them. The aim here is to ensure that the right things are done at the right time to make the NPP government favorable in the eyes of the Security personnel.
It is a fact that most of the security personnel who supported the NPP are not happy with the way things are going. These persons do approach our editor and volunteer information to be published. According to the personnel they have tried using the internal mechanisms but to no avail.
For instance, in the military, how can any right thinking member of the Ghana Armed Forces expect aggrieved persons to channel their grievances through Brigadier General Adu who is the Inspector General?
This is an officer who is dyed in wool member of the NDC, and was the Director General Defence Intelligence between July 2016 and March 2017, who did everything to help the NDC to win the 2016 elections. He is alleged to have travelled to the Ivory Coast to ferry Nzemas (Ghanaian and Ivorian) to cross from the Ivory Coast to vote for the NDC. He had the former Chief of Defence Staff, Lieutenant General PA Blay as the Ambassador in the Ivory Coast to collaborate with.
Moreover, this Brigadier General had compromised his integrity so much at the time that he was the Director Military Records that genuine sympathizers of the NPP will never feel comfortable to make any reports to him.
The most astonishing thing is that Brigadier General Adu, as the Director General of the Inspector General’s Department, is going round units asking them to furnish him with their grievances instead of channeling them through our Columnist and editor.
Now, the Minister of Defence, the Chief of Defence Staff and most of the NDC members of the Military High Command have made the columnist their target for elimination.
The Defence Minister last week threatened our editor. Our resolute editor would survive by the Grace of God, as he did during the NDC era when the Gbevlo-Larteys and the likes plotted to kill him.
It may seem ironical and paradoxical that in spite of all the good works, that have been done by our editor to seek the interest of the NPP and security personnel perceived to be associated with the NPP, it is during the tenure of office of His Excellency, Nana Akufo-Addo, the champion of press freedom that his minister, Service Chiefs and their agents would be looking for our editor to eliminate.
We want to ask the Honourable Minister of Defence to be thinking about the numerous unemployed youth in the Ashanti Region in particular (who voted massively for the NPP) rather than being obsessed about a party loyalist exposing malpractices and actions detrimental to the interest of NPP members and supporters.
You have allowed the NDC to be controlling the Armed Forces; you have NDC members and foot-soldiers filling all the recruitment and enlistment vacancies in the Security Services and you could not be bothered.
You have NDC senior officers looting public resources whose opportunity costs are huge but you could not be bothered. You have military lands in the hands of NDC officers and their business counterparts and you are not worried.
Yet you want to “reward” our columnist with DEATH. Please go ahead with your Chief of Defence Staff, Brigadier General E Okyere and co.
We are inspired by the words of the Duke of Wellington after he and his army were refused entry by a young man at a security crossing; that the young had resolutely stood by his master’s order not to allow anyone cross the territory. The Duke was disappointed but impressed by the boy’s display of loyalty. His remark then was that if he had only ten (10) of such teenagers in his army he would conquer the whole world. Needles to add that in our security enterprise, loyalty to the cause of the NPP is key and a precondition for all sensitive appointments.
As for death, both green and yellow leaves do fall but the LORD LIVES AND WILL SEE US THROUGH ONCE MORE.