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The Kwesi Botchwey report on NDC’s electoral disaster is cathartic


The huge sigh of relief you just heard came from the thousands of NDC supporters who had waited patiently for Dr. Kwesi Botchwey’s post election report which comprehensively looked at the factors behind the party’s humiliating electoral defeat at the hands of the ruling NPP last year.

Suffice it to say that the report was long overdue. Why? Because the NDC had become a pitiful sight. It couldn’t get over its disastrous electoral loss. Consequently, the party descended into ugly personal battles which pitched party stalwarts against one another.

The infighting and accusations that usually follow such poor electoral performance had grown to intolerable levels, and the party was in danger of losing its soul, its direction. Truth be told, the party is in a funk, a post election depression that seems to have no end in sight.

So, it goes without saying that the report is timely, and cathartic and is exactly what the party, now in opposition, desperately needs to cleanse its soul. Though contents of the nearly 500 page report have not been publicly released, there is widespread speculation that no single individual was made a scapegoat for the party’s poor showing at the polls.

At its core, the Botchwey report lays to rest, once and for all, frivolous claims that the former president, Mr. John Mahama and his administration were entirely responsible for the NDC’s severe electoral beating.

I take issue with assertions reportedly made by one Dr. Ibrahim Zuberu, a member of the Botchway committee, on a radio station in Accra that the former finance minister, Mr. Seth Terkper and the former communication minister, Dr. Omane Boamah are to blame for the party’s defeat.

Dr. Zuberu’s pronouncements were outrageous and highly irresponsible, and do not help the party’s cause at all. You would think that as a member of a fact-finding committee, Dr. Zuberu would have been cognizant of the divisions in the party and elect to keep his mouth shut.

These two gentlemen, Mr. Terkper and Dr. Boamah, should not be blamed for the lousy performance of a party that had become complacent and swollen-headed, and wrongly thought the Ghanaian voter racked by poverty and deep financial problems will swing its way. That did not happen, and the party now finds itself in the minority.

This is not the time to point fingers. Rather the Botchwey report presents the party with an opportunity to put the past behind it and move forward with bold initiatives.

What outsiders like me would want the party to do, is to prioritize its goals by fine tuning, its vast communication machinery. The number of its communicators should be drastically reduced, and those fortunate to be employed as party mouthpieces should have the requisite expertise in a variety of fields. It clearly needs communicators who are capable of deconstructing complex issues in finance, economics and foreign affairs.

Watching the party’s communicators last year prior to the elections trying to sell the party’s message to Ghanaians was akin to watching your baby mouth his/her first words. It was, simply put, a disaster.  And you wonder why the party took such a trouncing at the voting booth.

To regain the support and confidence of the Ghanaian voter, the NDC should come up with a persuadable and comprehensive 2020 campaign platform that will take into consideration the plight of the people at the grassroots level, the marginalized Ghanaian who finds it difficult to clothe, shelter and feed his family, and the growing number of our unemployed young men and women, seemingly elusive problems that successive governments have failed to adequately address.

The NDC has a lot riding on its shoulders; it can ill-afford to fail. Ghanaians need a viable opposition party that is capable of giving the ruling party a run for its money.

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