As NPP Commentators seem to be Clueless
It is so annoying the way the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) is carrying itself about as if it is very innocent in the matter of the Ghana-US Military Agreement, blaming H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for a crime against the nation this same party committed when in power in the late nineties. It all began twenty odd years ago, Tuesday, February 24, 1998 to be precise, that the sovereignty of this nation was surrendered on a silver platter to the United States of America.
In an earlier letter to the Government of Ghana, dated November 24, 1997, the USA, in its Embassy Note 171, made certain demands and concessions for the establishment of a military base in this West African country, and that included giving US personnel working on the facility full diplomatic status. It concluded by stating that if Ghana accepted her demands, the document will be binding on both countries. The Government of Ghana, under the Jerry Rawlings’ administration of the NDC, in a response dated February 24, 1998, accepted what the US was demanding without even making amendments.
That was the day we sold our sovereignty to the USA.
It is from this legal document, binding on us to submit to the US’s demands in setting up a military base in this country that was the basis of the US-Ghana Military Agreement of 2018.
What is very amazing about the date, February 24, 1998, is that February 24 is already a well-known date in the annals of the history of Ghana. In 1966, it was the day when the immortalised Nkrumah government was made mortal and overthrown. Today, this day is viewed in two different lights; some claim it was the day when true freedom visited the land and the road to democracy was restored.
Others, especially pro-socialists and Nkrumahists, keep chanting in perpetuity that it was the day the Ghana Dream collapsed.
But, in truth, in an era where Ghanaians were forbidden to say anything against the president and government, and one would do so at the risk of an indefinite jail term; when chiefs must be enstooled/enskinned or destooled/deskinned only by express approval of the government; and when parliamentarians were appointed by the government and not chosen by the people, among many draconian laws which enslaved the Ghanaian on his own soil, the coup was hailed as God-sent. Even some prominent CPP party functionaries and government appointees openly denounced Nkrumah. In all this, however, most socialists continue to view February 24, 1966 as the darkest period in Ghana’s history.
In truth, the acknowledgement and unconditional acceptance of the US’s proposal in the African Crisis Response Initiative by the pro-socialists, pro-Nkrumah government of the National Democratic Congress, led by President Jerry John Rawlings, was the real dark day in the history of this country. We became recolonised, and truly so, because, when we were first colonised we had no say in the matter. First the Whiteman came with sweet words and then he used military force to subdue the resistance by the Asante Kingdom to claim authority over the land.
On November 24, 1997, the US came with simple words to decree to Ghana that all those to work at the base were diplomats, and must be treated as such and accorded that respect; that we should grant the US duty-free on every import and export, and internal tax exemption on any item to be import into and exported out of this country, and that claims on damages, loss and destruction of property were to be waived.
In summary, this was what the Americans presented to President Jerry John Rawlings, which he and his NDC government hid from Ghanaians and never informed Parliament. Exactly three months later, on February 24, 1998, this socialist, pro-Nkrumah regime of the NDC responded to the US demands in a letter stating… “The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the further honour to inform the Embassy of the United States that the proposals set forth in the Embassy’s Note are acceptable to the Government of Ghana, and to confirm that the Embassy’s Note and this Note shall constitute an agreement between our two governments which shall enter into force on this date.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Ghana avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Embassy of the United States of America the assurance of its highest consideration.”
Socialists will always trumpet into our weary ears that all citizens are part of government, yet when the opportunity comes, and obviously huge amounts of hard currency are to exchange hands, the people are not invited to partake in business. So, the NDC government took a unilateral decision to sell Ghana to the USA, an agreement which is binding on all of us, without going to the people first, through Parliament.
February 24, 1966 was the day the sovereignty of this country was taken from Ghanaians by Ghanaians and given to Ghanaians. February 24, 1998 was the day the sovereignty of this country was taken from Ghanaians by Ghanaians and surrendered into the hands of the United States of America. We have been colonised again, and there is nothing we can do about it.
The blame should be put squarely on the NDC, and on no other. When the opportunity came for Ghana to back out of this agreement, the law-abiding New Patriotic Party (NPP) government decided to use the people’s representatives in Parliament. And here too, the NDC did us in.
Before any document could be debated on the floor of the House, that document would first be discussed by the sub-committee which is designated to handle that field. So, the Parliamentary Sub-Committee on Defence went to work on the 2018 edition of the African Crisis Response Initiative on the USA Embassy Note 171. On this sub-committee, the opposition NDC out-numbers the ruling NPP members of Parliament (MPs), and so any majority decision would mean either all or some of the NDC MPs went that way. It must be made clear that under this circumstance the NPP could have their say, but the NDC would always have their way. The Parliamentary Sub-Committee on Defence voted by majority decision to support the 2018 edition of the African Crisis Response Initiative. So, in effect, the NDC still supports the February 24, 1998 sale of Ghana to the USA.
When it came to the debate of the sub-committee’s report on the floor of the House, the NDC MPs strategically walked out, because they do not want to be seen by Ghanaians to be in support of this colonisation of Ghana by the USA, which they effected twenty years ago, in 1998.
It is very straight forward: if the NDC MPs opposed the 2018 Agreement, they will be compelled to explain why they sold Ghana off in 1998, and if they supported the Agreement, they will be exposed as traitors. The best solution was to walk out, and this they did to avoid confrontation with the good people of Ghana.
Now that the Agreement has been rectified, we expect the NDC to keep their mouths shut and do well to think of solutions to undo what they did in 1998.
To Mosquito General Asiedu Nketia, the truth of the matter is that those to face treason charges are some members of the NDC: those who wholly endorsed the US Embassy’s Note 171 dated November 24, 1997, and those NDC MPs on the Sub-Committee on Defence, who also endorsed what their founder and others did on February 24, 1998.
Some so-called International Relations Expert, without carefully analysing the issues from its roots, was on air accusing the NPP government. He volunteered a solution in case the US soldiers go bonkers and kill a Ghanaian. All the MPs, he suggested, who endorsed the agreement were to be killed. Really? Was that the way issues are resolved in international relations? And now that it is very clear that apart from an NDC government surrendering Ghana’s sovereignty to the US, majority of the NDC MPs on the Defence sub-committee endorsed that treason, should we start by killing the NDC members, starting from ex-President Jerry John Rawlings?
The NPP government must be recommended for the way it went. The issue is now open in the public domain, and even though Parliament has endorsed the revised edition of the 1998 Agreement, the people are talking and someone is going to court. And, most importantly, the USA is listening and monitoring events.
Let us openly debate this and arrive at an amicable solution to resolve what looks like the sale of this nation to the US by a pro-Nkrumah and socialist government of the National Democratic Congress.
In all this, the commentators of the New Patriotic Party are a bit too silent for comfort. These are issues they must have access to and debate logically. The question is how many more deals has the NDC committed Ghana into without Parliament and the people not made aware of? We can name a few here: the $20 million gift offering to a certain Cotton who claimed she could grow rice; bringing terrorists into this country under cover of darkness at dawn, before announcing it to us at midday, and the changing of the status of these terrorists to refugees without Parliament and the people knowing anything about it, among others.
In all this, what is the fuse about? During the Nkrumah regime, we had a Soviet military base here, and during the Rawlings Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) regime we had Libyan military base here. No one complained then, and no one is complaining now.
Today, the NDC has allowed the USA to set up a base here in Ghana, and they are complaining – a secretary who takes down minutes of a meeting, and during Correction of Minutes time, raises his hand to correct what he had written.
This is the NDC for you!
Hon. Daniel Dugan