A leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby, says in spite of evidence suggesting an official manipulation of the results of the 2012 elections, the NPP “should lick their wounds, circumscribe the legal effort and let sleeping dogs lie and prepare to put up a better performance in 2016 and beyond”.
His reasons are that the NPP put up an abominable performance in its monitoring and policing of ballot day events, especially the counting of the votes, and that the party was so confident of a favourable outcome that it completely ignored and wrote off all of the “manipulative machinations” of the Electoral Commission (EC) in the run-up to the elections, especially the EC’s “damning failures” on the verification of the electoral register.
“There is overemphasis on whipping up the party’s base into a frenzy of ‘we were robbed and we will retrieve our victory through the courts’, without explaining to the supporters that we left both the gate and the front door unguarded to make it easy for the burglars and that prospects of succeeding to dethrone President Mahama and crown President Akufo-Addo have minimal odds,” he contended in a statement.
“If only all the energies going into proving that we were robbed had been put into preventing the theft, especially as we knew the likely futility of compiling a list of lost items as evidence for taking the watchman to court on suspicion of colluding with the burglars,” he added.
According to Dr Wereko-Brobby, known in political circles as ‘Tarzan’, there was little doubt, based on “incontrovertible” evidence, of widespread official manipulation and massaging of both the voting process and the outcome of Election 2012 “to hand a first round victory to President Mahama”.
He said the widespread abuse of the electoral process was crystallised by the events in Dome-Kwabenya where, but for the diligence and persistence of the parliamentary candidate, Adwoa Safo, thievery would have been perpetrated.
“However, it is my contention that a post-facto proof of abuse of the process, even if successful, will not provide a meritorious and convincing case for the NPP to turn Stolen Verdict 3 into Victory 2012, even if this time it is in the form of an actual legal process instead of a book.
“We may succeed in bringing better performance and greater accountability to the EC. However, while this may achieve a moral victory for us, it will not be Victory 2012,” he submitted.
Dr Wereko-Brobby said with the declaration of the results and President Mahama being congratulated by the international community, including President Obama, Kofi Annan, David Cameron and Chancellor Merkel, there was an indication that all of Ghana’s allies in the Western democracies and other world leaders of note had accepted the outcome of the elections.
“Put another way, they may be telling Ghanaians, and especially the NPP, in the most diplomatic but pointed way, that Election 2012 is all over now; it is time to move on,” he reiterated.
He took the NPP back into history in 1996 when a court action to reverse the NDC victory in Ayawaso West Wuogon dragged on till one week before Parliament rose in 2000 “and our brother Amoo achieved a pyrrhic victory of becoming an MP who never took his seat”.
He said the NPP had long been aware of the fact that there had always been a big disconnect between the expressed will of the people and the outcome that was declared.
He said since the first elections under the Fourth Republican Constitution in 1992, when the party went through the emotions of early celebrations which gradually turned to the gnashing of teeth and the writing of the original ‘Stolen Verdict’, it had gone through similar experiences in 1996, 2008 and 2012.
“The people wanted and voted for an NPP government but were let down by the party as it failed to secure the victory through effective policing of the count. The failure is unpardonable and inexplicable and no amount of post-facto noise and bravado will atone for the cardinal sins of the NPP leadership,” he remarked.
“In trying to pull back the bolted horse, the NPP has to be careful not to allow that horse to kick out and gore innocent Ghanaians who may even be sympathetic to the cause,” he cautioned.
Dr Wereko-Brobby observed that the Ghana Journalists Association and some of its member bodies were angry with the unwarranted attacks on their members who were simply trying to cover the public protestations and exertions of the party, while people whose persons and vehicles were being attacked indiscriminately were rightly crying foul.
According to him, the main question that the NPP leadership had to answer truthfully to itself and more importantly to Ghanaians was, “What are the real chances of the party succeeding to reverse the results of the 2012 presidential elections in court?”
He said the decision to go to court, while it might add to strengthen the country’s democratic process, posed significant questions about the NPP’s current standing and future electoral prospects more than the very simple and emotional appeal to a sorely disappointed base.
He said the eerie quietness of post-election Ghana suggested that the majority of Ghanaians did, indeed, vote for change and were also very disappointed about the outcome.
“What we should avoid at all cost is to unconsciously highlight the demonstrated incompetence in the monitoring of the voting and counting that failed to turn their expressed wish into the actual change. Whatever we do, let us not compromise and jeopardise NPP’s future election prospects to satisfy the short-term desires of those who may have failed the party and the people of Ghana so badly,” he submitted.
Dr Wereko-Brobby said he had cautioned the NPP in a memorandum written to the party on October 23, 2012, six weeks before Election Day, to create an army of able, committed and unbribable supporters who would be willing to observe the elections at all the 26,015 polling stations and other centres on Election Day.
“As far as I am concerned, those who watched things happen then, instead of making things happen, and are now straining their credentials to prosecute Stolen Verdict 3 simply have no case. Their time will be better spent ensuring that the will of the people of Ghana in Election 2016 will be manifested in a victorious outcome,” he remarked.
Source: Daily Graphic