Today, he sits in Parliament pretending to be representing the people of Builsa-South, in the Upper-East Region, where he was born, on the ticket of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC). But for the past 4-plus years, Dr. Clement Apaak was a bona fide and stentorian spokesman for former President John Dramani Mahama, whose Presidential Staffer he had been named.

             In the period that he sat in the Flagstaff House with the self-proclaimed “Northern Star,” playing Divine Providences with inscrutable wisdom pots – a la Kwaku Ananse – a lot of things were going wrong, including the rampant and indiscriminate lynching of people arbitrarily branded as witches, mostly elderly and middle-aged women. At absolutely no time did Dr. Apaak launch any campaign, either local or nationwide, to call attention to this veritable existential menace that had been ravaging the country for as long as anybody can remember.

 

            Back then, as Presidential Staffer, and easily the most prominent and recognizable member of these largely presidential hangers-on and boondogglers, Dr. Apaak had enough influence and power to have crafted a comprehensive policy initiative and caused the same to be implemented to give more teeth and bite to the Mental-Health Act of 2012, which was passed under the watch of his then-boss, Mr. John Dramani Mahama, President of the Democratic Republic of Ghana. But he didn’t. Instead, the now-Builsa-South NDC-MP preferred to staunchly back the inordinate political nuisances of Ms. Akua Donkor, the self-proclaimed farmer and boon travel companion of President Mahama and the rest of the hoodlum pack of parasites at the Flagstaff House, in the cynical name of democratic cross-sectional representation of Ghanaian citizens at all status levels and endeavors.

 

            The real objective here, of course, was to use Ms. Akua Donkor in a tactically ethnocentric manner to harass the Akufo-Addo-led New Patriotic Party’s electioneering campaign. One of these days, an executive-mandated investigation may have to be ordered into the assets acquisition and bank accounts of the leader-founder of the so-called Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), vis-à-vis her very public and flamboyant relationship with former President John Mahama. Recently, Ms. Donkor publicly accused the main political opponent of her former political patron and benefactor of having designs to have her physically liquidated or assassinated. Akua donkor is definitely a prime candidate for the sort of state-of-the-art mental health facilities, all across the country, that Dr. Apaak, the latter-day pontiff of mental patients is advocating.

 

             The advocate himself does not have much credibility, which pretty much explains why he has been trucking with Ms. Akua Donkor who, by the way, has also bitterly complained that then-President-Elect Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo deliberately refused to offer her an official invitation to attend his presidential inauguration at the Independence Square. If 50-something-year-old Ms. Akua Donkor is not a prime candidate for the sort of cutting-edge mental-health facilities that Dr. Apaak is advocating for, then I don’t who else is. Don’t get me wrong, dear reader, there is absolutely nothing wrong with Dr. Apaak’s advocacy for evenly distributed modern healthcare facilities across the country. But, like Akua Donkor, the man lacks credibility and so one begins to wonder if his advocacy is not backed by any ulterior motives.

 

He has no credibility because Dr. Apaak recently claimed, very publicly, that he could provide hardcopy evidence backing the patently mendacious claim that then-President-Elect Akufo-Addo had specifically instructed the key operatives of the then-outgoing Mahama regime to order some 43 armored cars for the express and especial use of the members of the incoming Presidency at the humongous cost of $ 9 million, GH 40 million-plus. Well, more than a month later since his claim was made, Ghanaians have yet to be provided with the promised evidence that is intended to put the members of the Akufo-Addo Transition Team to shame.

 

But that the Builsa-South NDC-MP would opportunistically use two tragic occasions involving the suicides of two young female undergraduate students, separately, at the University of Ghana (UG) and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), to luridly and cynically drive home the need to increase and upgrade the country’s mental healthcare facilities, is all the more to be pitied. Why, for instance, couldn’t Dr. Apaak have used the more realistic and closer-to-home example of the savage mob-lynching of a perfectly healthy and normal Madam Yenboka Kenna, at Penlugu, in the same Upper-East Region where Dr. Apaak was born and raised, as the most relevant and fetching case in point?

 

I mean, here we have a whole village and its chief callously stoning to death evidently the most sane and diligent of their citizens. I bet Dr. Apaak could even be a prime candidate for examination and treatment in the sort of psychiatric facilities that the former Mahama policy wonk is advocating.

 

By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

English Department, SUNY-Nassau

Garden City, New York