The Alleged Kumawuhene Displays Acts of Cowardice and Hypocrisy During President Nana Akufo-Addo’s Visit to Kumawu
Being the defender of the poor and the needy, and the speaker for the voiceless, I cannot let it be brushed under the carpet the failure to seize an opportunity presented on a silver platter to the self-styled Kumawuhene (paramount chief of Kumawu) Barima Sarfo Tweneboa Kodua a. k. a. Dr Yaw Sarfo, to air his honest views to His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, when he, the president, did visit Kumawu during his recent three days tour of the Ashanti region.
To be honest with myself and the wider Ghanaian public, Kumawu traditional area or district or constituency, has not had any fair essential developments yet, under the current NPP administration headed by His Excellency the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. However, it has benefited from the Free Senior High School educational policy enrolled throughout the country.
Being already aware of the fact that Rome was not built in a day but it took some years, so also will the president not be able to develop the whole country in his first or second term in office. It will take him time to fulfil his electioneering promises to every constituency, district or the nation. It is only little-minds who are not open to how a nation is developed or built that will expect the president to realise all his farsighted promises to the nation by the crack of his fingers or the wagging of a cow’s tail in his hand as does the fetish priests, to conjure total development for Ghana in his first term of four years in office. In the obvious presence of scarcity of monetary resource of our own but to be at the mercy of international lenders and donors, it will surely take time, pragmatism, dynamism and fortitude to realise all the promises.
Subsequently, I do not begrudge the president and his government too much for their inability to have satisfied the needs of Kumawu traditional area or district or constituency by now, as far as they use the little resources of the nation prudently without allowing any official corruption to creep in.
Nonetheless, their failure to continue the Kumawu Government Hospital or whatever it is called, to completion, is what baffles me. I understand the project which was half-way completed and was in active progress before the NPP took over power from the NDC, had fully been paid for. It was to be built, equipped with machines and supplied with a certain amount of drugs, all at the cost of US$20 million.
Why has the project been discontinued under the NPP government? I heard forensic investigations were to be conducted into its contractual cost which was deemed to have been inflated to benefit the NDC or certain government or party members, as the NDC were suspected to love easy money acquired through dubiously awarded contracts, and their infamous “create, loot and share” judgment debt payments. If it was so, has the investigation not been completed to allow for the work on the hospital to continue but to let the half-way completed project rot away?
Then let me go on to why Dr Yaw Sarfo is a damn coward and a hypocrite! I received a short recorded video of him which is still on my phone on a WhatsApp wall, sitting in a meeting with Kumawuhemaa, their elders and a journalist or a radio news presenter. In the video, he was daring the NPP in their absence that should they not complete the hospital project before election 2020, himself and Kumawuhemaa will vote against them. He turned to the queen and said, “I hope you know how we cast our vote”. He would have continued to say other things but a voice was heard saying, Nana, stop because we have a journalist present here.
Surprisingly, in another video recording made when the president visited Kumawu a few weeks later, thus after Dr Yaw Sarfo’s said private meeting, he was full of praise of the president, enumerating all the many projects Kumawu district or Kumawu traditional area has benefited from the NPP government under President Nana Akufo-Addo. He did not cough a word about the hospital, thus, not mentioned a word about it, although that is the greatest achievement he expects from the government. This tells you the level of his cowardice and hypocrisy.
At least, he could have cleverly copied what a certain chief in then greater Brong-Ahafo region said to then President J. J. Rawlings when he paid them a tour visit of the region. The chief expected a certain road to have been constructed of which the president had earmarked money for its construction long ago. The chief said, “My people and I are pleading with you to construct this road for us as it has been in a very bad state for long. I have one vote of which I will surely cast it for you at the election but those of my people I cannot assure you of. Most of them are saying they will not go to the polls if this road was not macadamised by then”.
Rawlings went back to Accra, summoned the Minister in Charge of Roads and Highways or whatever it was called, questioned him about why the road was not done whereas they had informed him that it had. He straightaway ordered the road to be done and lo and behold, they did it.
In the presence of the president, he was being overly smiley, praising him and his government while behind his back, he was being abusive and threatening.
I hate with passion people who are smiley on the face while being abusive behind your back. Why did he fail to tell the president what really bothers him and the people of Kumawuman to enable the president prioritise the needs of the people of Kumawuman or the Sekyere Kumawu and Sekyere Afram Plains districts? Why was he rather full of praise for the president, crediting him with some projects that are yet to be in the offing? How was he helping the president know about the truth and the concerns of the people if he continued to praise him as if the people are 100% happy with him, and are satisfied with what he has done for Kumawuman so far?
As I am not on the ground, I quickly forwarded the video clip on the president’s visit and all that Dr Yaw Sarfo had said to one of my contacts at Kumawu to investigate to confirm the veracity of Dr Yaw Sarfo’s assertions. The information that came to me was that some of the things said by Dr Yaw Sarfo are non-existent. If it were so, why should he lie just to shower praises on the president to barely turn around to castigate him when he departs from Kumawu? By his deplorable attitude, he has not helped himself. He has not helped the citizens of Kumawu Sekyere and Sekyere Afram Plains districts. He has not helped the president by way of not letting him know the truth to act appropriately to bring projects to Kumawuman, a diehard NPP stronghold.
Kumawuman is yet to get her fair share of the ongoing developments in Ghana. I know the president cannot realise most of his promises to the entire nation within three or eight years in office. However, he has to remember Kumawuman if he is sharing the national cake. Kumawuman deserves better than the cowardice and unhelpful hypocrisy depicted by Dr Yaw Sarfo, the unconventionally imposed chief on Kumawuman. Was he lying to help the District Chief Executive of Kumawu Sekyere District, Mr Samuel Addai Agyekum, who has constantly been lying about the NPP’s achievements in Kumawuman and also lying to prop Dr Yaw Sarfo’s position as Kumawuhene? What a, “You scratch my back, I scratch your back” or “One good turn deserves another”, going on between the DCE and Dr Yaw Sarfo at the expense of Kumawuman inhabitants.
I pray that Ghanaians understand that the president is steadily fulfilling his promises to the nation. Let us give him time and surely, most of his promises, if not all, shall be realised. I have a full trust in him, a modern day David, Joseph or Moses.
In all, Kumawuman deserves justice in her ongoing chieftaincy dispute but not any arm-twisting justice and no any judicial corruption to satisfy any strong or powerful traditional leader. As former American President Barack Obama said, “Africa needs strong institutions but not strong men” in order to advance. This can only be achieved if our justice delivery becomes fair and firm, respecting anyone’s human rights regardless of their status in the country, thus, whether rich or poor, educated or uneducated, tall or short, male or female.
I dedicate this publication to the discerning people of Kumawuman and Asiampa.
I hope I’m done.