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News“Konongo Kaya”, the tribal insult Martin Amidu will never forget

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“Konongo Kaya”, the tribal insult Martin Amidu will never forget

Former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, has entered the fray surrounding recent commentary on the use of tribal invectives in front-line politics, expressing dissatisfaction with what he perceives as selective quoting and hypocrisy.

The controversy was ignited by Fifi Fiavi Kwetey, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) General Secretary, who labeled Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia as a disgrace to northerners. Kwetey’s remarks triggered harsh reactions, particularly from the opposition.

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Nana Akomea, a key member of the Bawumia for President 2024 campaign, condemned Kwetey’s rhetoric, citing its misplaced nature. Akomea referenced Amidu’s 2015 attack on former President Mahama in a radio interview, highlighting the NDC’s silence on similar invectives directed at their candidate at the time.

However, Amidu expressed discontent with Akomea’s response, accusing him of deliberate misrepresentation of the context in which he made the comments in 2015. Amidu emphasized Akomea’s silence when he himself faced tribal insults from an NPP Member of Parliament, Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi, who derogatorily referred to him using a colonial Akan insult on northerners.

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Amidu’s rebuke of Akomea’s apparent hypocrisy was articulated in a piece dated February 22, where he warned both the NPP and NDC against selectively quoting him during the upcoming campaign season.

“When Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi, the NPP Member of Parliament, an Ashanti, pejoratively referred to me using a colonial Akan insult on northerners as ‘Konongo Kaya’ on Friday, 19 August 2022, the tribal undertones were not lost upon many northerners generally and reasonable patriotic Ghanaians. Almighty Nana Akomea endorsed the tribal insult by his NPP party colleague with his eerie silence,” Amidu’s piece read in part.

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Amidu’s intervention underscores the contentious nature of tribal politics in Ghana and the need for a more responsible discourse among political actors. He called for an end to the selective use of his past remarks for political expediency and urged both parties to refrain from exploiting his words during the campaign season.

Read full story:

NANA AKOMEA SHOULD BE CAREFUL WHAT HE GETS BY QUOTING MY 

INTERVIEWS OR ARTICLES WHEN CANDIDATES NANA AKUFO-ADDO/ 

BAWUMIA WERE GHANA’S PERCEIVED ANTI-CORRUPTION MESSIAHS & REDEEMERS: BY MARTIN A. B. K. AMIDU 

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) should be careful about quoting what I said or wrote in the past out of context to spuriously support allegations of corruption or mismanagement against each other for the purely propaganda purpose of deceiving the electorate for their votes and abandoning them thereafter. I hope that when eventually I determine by a considered examination and analysis of the facts and evidence the most corrupt of the two political parties they will each accept my verdict without question since I have become their authority on this issue.   

Modern Ghana reported on 22 February 2024 with its source as Citinewroom the reaction of the NPP’s Nana Akomea, the Deputy Campaign Chairman for candidate Mahamudu Bawumia to alleged tribal remarks made by Fiifi Kwetey, the General Secretary of the NDC in which the latter described Mahamudu as a “disgrace to northerners.”  Mr. Fiifi Kwetey is an Ewe from Southern Volta and to call Mahamudu as a “disgrace to northerners” evokes a legitimate question of using tribal pejoratives against Mahamudu.  

When Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi, the NPP Member of Parliament, an Ashanti, pejoratively referred to me using a colonial Akan insult on northerners as “Konogo Kaya” on Friday, 19 August 2022, the tribal undertones were not lost upon many northerners generally and reasonable patriotic Ghanaians. Almighty Nana Akomea endorsed the tribal insult by his NPP party colleague with his eerie silence.  It does appear to me to be the height of hypocrisy that when Fiifi Kwetey uses a similar pejorative insult on the person Nana Akomea is hoping to win the 2024 presidential election and appoint him to a juicy position, his reposit is to refer to a senior northerner warning his junior brother of the consequences of his conduct on the north.  

I continue to see myself first and foremost as a northerner because I was born in the British Protectorate of the Northern Territories of the Gold Coast Colony (NT) to British protected persons deprived of the rights enjoyed by the British colonial subjects in the Gold Coast and Ashanti. The entire natives of the NT were pejoratively referred to as Northerners which our forebearer internalized and accepted as a distinct mark for the anti-colonial struggle and exhibition of a culture of honesty and integrity which the British found in all the tribes in the NT. The original pejorative reference to the people of the NT as northerners came to symbolize a culture of honour, integrity, valour, hard work, and unquestioned loyalty to the British Crown or whosoever the worker from the NT served in the colony. The pride of being a northerner from the NT found expression in the Northern People’s Party, the Northern Study Group, and the Northern Student’s Union for which I was the Secretary General in 

1976/77 academic year. The concept of northerners became so accepted by the people of the NT to the extent that the scholarships created by Kwame Nkrumah to accelerate education and development to enable the NT after independence catch up with what had been the privileged colony was named the Northern Scholarship Grant.  

It does not matter how many regions the Northern Region at independence is divided into to balkanize it. We of the old stock still see ourselves first and foremost as northerners, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters and each other’s keeper, politics notwithstanding. I, therefore, had an inherent right as John Dramani Mahama’s northern senior brother to warn him about the consequences of treading a path which was non-northern in my view.  What I said was culturally permissible as every senior in our culture has a right to warn every junior not to bring the north into disrepute. Nana Akomea cannot, therefore, honestly quote what I said or wrote about John Mahama in 2015 as an answer to what Fiifi Kwetey, a nonnortherner and junior in age to Mahamudu said about him except to deceive the unsuspecting electorate of an analogy, where none exits.     

One ardent NPP supporter of Akan origin holding dual nationality resident in the comfort of the United States of America has referred to several northerners, including myself, who disagree with the NPP Government’s unprecedented corruption as “Frafra native from the Upper East Region.” He has consistently referred to John Mahama as “Okogufuo 

Yagbonwura Kwame Gonja” without any objection or rebuke from the likes of Nana Akomea. The NPP’s gaping sycophant dual national sitting in the comfort of the USA went to the extent of describing the 1992 Constitution thus: “….the irredeemable travesty that is the largely National Democratic Congress-drafted and enacted Ghana’s 1992 Republican Constitution…” But now that Fiifi Kwetey has called the integrity of Nana Akomea’s future employer should Mahamudu win the 2024 presidential election into question, I, Martin Amidu, have become opportunist Nana Akomea’s bartering ram against Fiifi Kwetey and the NDC without the context and environment in which I spoke to Joy FM. 

Where was the sense of propriety of opportunist Nana Akomea when Daniel Bugri Naabu (Northern Regional Chairman of the NPP) was reported on 21 November 2015 to have said that President Mahama is a disgrace to Northerners? See:Has President Mahama outwitted his political opponents? (ghanaweb.com). In picking on me, Nana Akomea is corruptly and hypocritically hiding the facts and evidence from the electorate that Bugri Naabu was between 1996 and 2000 a card bearing and leading member of the NDC. (See: Ghana: Prodigal Bugri Naabu Quits NDC for Good – allAfrica.com). Nana Akomea is also wishing away the fact that the electorate knows that the NPP Government appointed me as the first Special Prosecutor and I discovered the massive, suspected corruption and procurement malpractices offences in the 64-page Agyapa Royalties Transaction Report. Nana Akomea must be dishonestly pretending to be unaware that Fiifi Kwetey might just have been transferring by repeating what Bugri Naabu said in November 2015 to fit the circumstances and role of Mahamudu Bawumia as Vice-President in today’s Ghana.   

Politicians like Nana Akomea may assume naively that Ghanaians are forgetful of the context, the circumstances, and the environment within which I spoke to Joy Fm and MultiTV’s news analysis programme, Newsfile, on or about 14 November 2015 which supported the Nana Akufo-Addo/Mahamudu Bawumia pretensions of being incorruptible and the messiahs to stop corruption, nepotism, cronyism, and use our natural resources for benefit of Ghanaians. Ghanaians believed their pretensions and false promises only to find us swindled as a nation and brought to hunger and deprivation by the duo. Corruption and cronyism have reached an apogee never witnessed in the history of this country. It, therefore, smacks of dishonest opportunism to quote what I said in 2015 in the hope of a better alternative offered by the deception of Ghanaians by the Nana Akufo-Addo/Bawumia duo. 

I have stated elsewhere that the 2024 presidential election is going to be a contest between the lesser of two evils under the 1992 Constitution. In making that decision the non-sycophantic reasonable electorate may have to weigh the effects of the biblical and koranic edicts on punishment and repentance, and continued sin camouflaged with polished deception. John Dramani Mahama and Mahamudu Bawumia are both my northern brothers and it is dangerous for both the NDC and the NPP to seek to use what I said or wrote before the Nana Akufo-Addo/Bawumia Siamese twins assumed the governance of this country on 7 January 

2017 to date. Remember that I worked with this regime and may be privy to things Nana Akomea and his like cannot fathom. Nana Akufo-Addo knows how lethal I could be if the NPP puts temptation in my path.  

I wish the better of the two, John Mahama and Mahamudu Bawumia, win the 2024 presidential election through decent campaigning and speaking truth to the electorate. Should both sides drag my name into their affray and compel me to speak out as a senior northerner those who baited me should not blame me. I need nothing from John Mahama or Mahamudu Bawumia when either of them wins the 2024 elections just as I took nothing from the Nana 

Akufo/Bawumia governments. “A word to the wise,” we use to jokingly say at the Bawku Middle Mixed Boarding School in the early 1960’s, “is in the North.” 

Martin A. B. K. Amidu 

23 February 2024              

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