Kennedy Agyapong
Kennedy Agyapong

Kennedy Agyapong
Kennedy Agyapong
He was the man who so ingeniously exposed the unconscionable scam-artists who constitute the cream of the National Democratic Congress’ leadership and the latter’s neck-deep involvement in the epic Woyome heist. And so one was easily tempted to invest his declaration of having been reliably informed that Mrs. Charlotte Kesson-Smith Osei had offered sexual favors to President John Dramani Mahama in exchange for her post as Electoral Commission’s Chairperson with a modicum of credibility, however inexcusably scandalous such accusation might have seemed. Matters were also not helped that the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC) had been adamantly stonewalling the Supreme Court’s order to have the names of all voters who had registered to vote in the 2012 general election by the use of their National Health Insurance Scheme-issued ID cards deleted from the current National Voters’ Register.

To be certain, many avid students and scholars of contemporary Ghanaian political rhetoric were always fully aware of the fact of such accusation’s being utterly devoid of merit, or credibility, although we were also fully aware of the fact that the corrupt practice of sex-for-jobs did exist in Ghanaian society and was alive and well. We need to also quickly point out that this indefensibly immoral practice is not peculiar to Ghana; it is a global practice and a crime against the salutary advancement of women in the workplace, as was recently proven right here in the United States in the Roger Ailes Case. The latter, until he was recently forced to resign as CEO of the Twentieth-Century Fox Television Network, had been accused of rampantly and, some say, riotously subjecting female employees of Fox and other media organizations where Mr. Ailes had worked in senior managerial capacities of pressuring vulnerable female subordinates to offer him sexual favors, if they wanted to keep their jobs.

Of course, the fact of such practice being globally riotously rampant did not give Mr. Kennedy Ohene Agyapong the right or license to malign and defame any woman in Ghanaian society. The New Patriotic Party’s Member of Parliament for Assin-Central, in the Central Region, by his scurrilous accusation, definitely reached far beyond the person of Mrs. Osei. We often forget that the EC Chairperson’s husband and children, as well as her relatives, had been inexcusably scandalized by such scatological act of slander. In short, any apologies would have to take due cognizance and account of all these emotionally and publicly injured persons. I am also not sure that a mere public apology would adequately remedy the far-reaching harm caused the victims involved. And so maybe some form of a combination of discipline and material/monetary compensation ought to be worked out among the major parties involved.

And on the foregoing score, I am thinking of some form of parliamentary censure or even suspension of some form. Which is not, in any way, to imply that Mr. Agyapong is the only Ghanaian politician who is guilty of such grossly abusive use of language. Some form of fine would also be quite in order, the way it would have been done in Akan Common Law, for example. Generally, I found the massive outcry for Mr. Agyapong to be eaten alive, largely by critics of National Democratic Congress’ affiliation, to be unacceptably hypocritical, because this was not the very first time that any Ghanaian politician had impugned the chastity of a high-profile woman. For instance, when Mr. Maxwell Kofi Jumah, the former Mayor of Kumasi, intemperately accused Mrs. Patricia Appiagyei, also a former Kumasi Mayor, of having secured her mayoral appointment by offering sexual favors to then-President John Agyekum-Kufuor, scarcely any prominent members of the National Democratic Congress raised any voice in dissent.

Perhaps politicians like Nana Oye Lithur and Ms. Hanna Tetteh presumed such scandalous accusation to be the internal affair of the members and supporters of the New Patriotic Party. Our great Akan philosophers and thinkers of old were fond of the maxim that “If it touches your heels, it also touches your butts.” In essence, our destinies as Ghanaians, irrespective of ethnicity or ideological suasion, are intertwined. It is hoped that some edifying lessons have been learned here. May God bless the diligent and longsuffering Ghanaian woman. May God bless our homeland Ghana.

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, 2016
E-mail: [email protected]

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