The Minority in Parliament on Thursday pulled a sly one on the House and the Speaker when it staged a walk-out just when President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was just about to deliver his State of the Nation Address.
The Minority welcomed the President into the Chamber and stood for the national anthem but afterwards marched out singing the last stanza of the anthem ‘…And help us to resist oppressors’ rule with all our will and might evermore.’
At a press briefing to explain its action, Minority leader Haruna Iddrisu stated that his side walked out to mourn the threat to democracy by the Akufo-Addo regime.
The opposition, he said, will not show apathy to threat to democracy and stressed that if the President continues to turn deaf ears to his opponents, the Minority also reserve the right not to listen to his delivery.
Mr. Haruna Iddrisu observed that the Akufo-Addo government is executing an elaborate agenda to weaken the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in a clandestine plot to make Ghana a one-party state.
According to him, the President has conducted the affairs of state with the kind of tyranny, despotism and authoritarianism that frighten many objective observers since taking over the reins of power.
“The democracy we all toiled and sacrificed to establish is now threatened by the highhandedness of President Akufo-Addo.”
“The man who in opposition styled himself as a champion democrat has turned out to be a nightmare and an existential threat to our fledgling democracy,” he said.
The President, he said, has blatantly refused to disband the illegal SWAT team populated with hoodlums belong to his vigilante groups in flat violations of recommendations by the Emile Short Commission.
Many more of these blood thirsty hoodlums, he alleged, continue to be trained at national security installations and are being armed ahead of the 2020 elections.
He accused the government of plotting with the Jean Mensah-led Electoral Commission (EC) to compile a new Voters’ Register despite overwhelming public opposition from Civil Society Organizations and political parties.
This, he stated, is a sinister agenda to rig the 2020 elections as unwittingly disclosed by the Majority leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, when he stated if the NPP is successful in compiling a new voters register, the NDC will never come back power.
“President Akufo-Addo also goes down in history as the only President in the Fourth Republic to supervise the cruel removal of the chairperson of the EC Charlotte Osei to pave the way for the elaborate scheme to rig the 2020 elections by compiling a new Voters Register,” he added.
The Minority leader lamented that media freedoms and free expression have also come under unprecedented attacks leading to the cold-blooded murder of Ahmed Suale whose killers are yet to be apprehended.
The government, he said, continues to close down radio stations affiliated to political opponents and added, “Only last week, his administration after the Gestapo closures of Radio Gold and Radio XYZ, and many others, closed down Radio Tongu and Fox FM, Takoradi in the most bizarre of circumstances.”
He stressed that the growing culture of impunity and tyranny that has reached alarming proportions was exhibited again when agents of National Security demolished Ghanaian businesses located at the Ghana Trade Fair Site.
He said, “Not even notice was served on the owners to take out their valuables ahead of the barbaric demolition.”
According to him, the walkout is a bold protest against tyranny and to sent clear message directly to President Akufo-Addo that enough is enough.
“We shall no longer accept the growing levels of impunity and unconstitutionalism masked by duplicitous and hollow rhetoric.”
“Ghana belongs to all of us and so shall we all stand to defend the democracy we have all laboured for,” he stated.