Looking closely at the former President John Mahama’s behavior and criticisms of everything about Nana Akufo-Addo government, one can think of a wasteful soccer player who out of sheer luck or through tragic accident of history got the chance to play in a striker’s role many people initially thought he did not deserve but still couldn’t prove his doubters wrong, either. In other words, like a sluggish or consistently wasteful soccer striker who has just been substituted to the bench, ex-president Mahama is screaming from the sidelines, complaining bitterly to the technical team that he could have done better if he had not been replaced sooner…excuse me?
The cold truth about “footballer” Mr. Mahama is that he wishes Ghanaians never remember he was just in the high-tempo “soccer game” he couldn’t keep up with. He was shooting aimlessly all over the field: Missing clear penalty shoot-outs; endlessly shooting over the bar; getting caught in numerous off-side positions, and as a result the “Ghanaian technical crew” smartly decided to bring in a more effective substitute to prevent further damage to the overall strategy of the team. Let’s not forget that before his substitution, “striker” JDM had been shooting blank in front of the goalpost for the past seventy minutes of the 90-minute game, which greatly explained the reason team Ghana was losing badly during the former NDC leader’s marksmanship.
Ironically, as soon as the team had made changes to introduce more creativity and potency into the losing Ghana side, the substituted and lethargic striker, JDM started yelling unstoppably from the bench toward the “football pitch,” pointing out he strongly believes he is better than his replacer (President Akufo-Addo) because the substitute is also shooting over the goalpost more than when he (JDM) was playing.
We all know Ghana is soccer-crazed nation; so, one is confident Ghanaians will get this soccer analogy better to understand ex-president Mahama’s deep-seated political machinations as we speak. “Striker” Mahama has just been replaced in the fast-paced game for his poor performance—remember he lost abysmally in the 2016 elections. Rather than sitting down, get some needed rest, and allow his substitute time to warm up into the game he himself couldn’t handle well, Mr. Mahama is shamelessly protesting to the coach/technical team (Ghanaians voters); while at the same time screaming at his substitute. One of his main complaints is that he should not have been substituted in that his replacer has just hit the crossbar instead of scoring.
The simple message one is conveying is former President John Mahama is behaving almost similar to an inefficient number-nine striker many soccer fans already know is not competent or lethal in front of the goal. Yet, he is trying hard to persuade Ghanaians as though he is the only person who has what it takes to salvage the country from its economic doldrums. Mr. Mahama was in this game for a considerable length of time, and the Ghanaian spectators saw his awful striking abilities; that was why he was substituted.
So, whatever socioeconomic hardship the country is going through under the relatively infant administration of President Akufo-Addo, the hope is that Ghanaians will not be too naively forgetful to fall for the pranks and the honey-filled-good-old-days political campaigns ex-President Mahama and his cabals keep rehashing and spreading around. More so, this column wishes that Ghanaian electorates will be thoughtful enough and more important, put on their critical thinking caps to enable them remember clearly the socioeconomic “inferno” the people experienced not long ago during Mr. John Mahama’s eight-year (?) amateurish presidency.
Undeniably, former president (JDM) and his NDC underlings have no iota of shame for their poor handling of Ghana’s hitherto encouraging economic trajectories in the post-Kufuor regime. From Mr. Mahama’s ongoing political posturing, none of us need rocket scientists to help figure out that the ex-president takes average Ghanaians for political fools. In fact, Mr. Mahama has a reason behind his political manipulations, because it is this same person who was reportedly quoted as saying Ghanaians forget things too easily, perhaps to the point of amnesia.
In actuality, what Mr. Mahama means is that no matter his abysmal track record, the amnesiac Ghanaians will soon forget everything as if dumsor, big-time corruption, or galamsey did not happen, so long as he keeps muddying the water by telling the country how bad Nana Addo-led government is. It is why the ex-president keeps talking cynically about the Free SHS—one of the most landmark social intervention programs the nation has ever had since independence. Again, like a slow soccer striker, Mr. Mahama was underperforming long time on the pitch prior to his replacement. Even though he seems to have found his “striking voice” now, yelling at another player who has just taken his place, Mr. Mahama ought to surrender to the reality that he still is a wasteful “soccer striker” who lacks the quick-witted skills regarding how to strike accurately at the goalposts. Brother Mahama, the politically-savvy Ghanaians have had enough of your empty striking antics.
Bernard Asubonteng is a US-based writer. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
By Bernard Asubonteng