The chiefs of Ekumfi have expressed worry over comments made by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for denying them development because they voted against the New Patriotic Party (NPP) candidate, Kingsley Ato Cudjoe.
The chiefs say they are worried that the President who knows better regarding the position of the constitution on development could make those comments merely because their people exercised their democratic rights against his preferred candidate.
In a statement issued by the chiefs to set the records straight on their supposed involvement in the demand for an autopsy report of the late former President, John Evans Atta Mills, the Ekumfi chiefs after advising the two families to settle the matter amicably, criticised the president for saying his development priorities are influenced by voting patterns of any community.
They want President Akufo-Addo to commence all stalled projects in the constituency to show his remorse for making those unwarranted remarks.
“We are deeply worried about the statement made by the President as it has called into question the people’s democratic “right to vote freely.” After all, the tenets of democracy include the ability of the people to freely elect who they deem fit to be their representative in Parliament.
“We therefore wish to draw the President’s attention to the unfortunate statements; asking him to revisit his notes, and ensure that all stalled developmental initiatives in Ekumfi start in earnest, so we could assume that the President regrets making those displeasing statements,” they expressed.
Read below the full statement from the chiefs.
PRESS RELEASE FROM EKUMFI TRADITIONAL COUNCIL ON LATE PROFESSOR JOHN EVANS ATTA MILLS AND MATTERS ARISING
In 2008, the late Professor John Evans Fiifi Atta Mills, a proud Fantse won the General Elections and became the President of Ghana. As we are all aware, Professor Mill’s victory made all Ghanaians proud as his father for all mantra and leadership qualities united Ghanaians and was loved by all.
The good people of the Central Region became extremely happy that for the first time since the country’s independence through to the inception of the 1992 Republican Constitution, the region, which is well noted for being the citadel of quality education, has been able to produce a full bright scholar to lead Ghana as President.
As a matter of fact, we the people of Ekumfi are exceptionally proud that our dear brother, father, uncle and son who had always been selfless, humble, respectful, and duly respected by all and sundry regardless of how they voted in national elections, and earned him the accolade “Asomdwee Hen.”
Like any other great leader in history, Professor Mills could not have ruled forever, but he definitely paid his dues to the country as a true statesman who had to sacrifice himself, and laid his dear life for the nation even when it became obvious that his health was failing.
We all remember vividly how the entire nation was plunged into sadness when his untimely demise occurred about twelve years ago, and the way Ghanaians across the world mourned him, could amply bear an indelible testimony that indeed Ghanaians truly loved and cherished this charismatic leader. This is why Ghanaians collectively held a befitting burial to honour his passing and prayed to God and our ancestors to continue to keep his dear soul at peace.
There has been an emergence of controversy surrounding the whereabouts of an Autopsy report on his death.
Ordinarily, since Professor Mills died while still serving the country as a President and also as a statesman, with immediate siblings and families still alive, we the Nananom of Ekumfi would have loved to stay back and allow his family-clan and particularly his siblings to effectively collaborate with the state to put the issue to rest, so our dear Professor could rest in peace. But it does appear that some narratives and aspersions do robe us in, and often cast some innuendoes that directly and negatively affect us as Nananom and people of Ekumfi.
In view of this, we the Nananom of Ekumfi believe that if the extended or any member of the family has issues with the report, they could jaw-jaw with the immediate family to have their disagreement settled once and for all, instead of the recurring media banter. Nananom wish to state that the raging back and forth wrangling is not just appalling but also disgraceful and disgusting; projecting the family as a disintegrated one.
To set the records straight, the Paramount Chief Odeefo Akyin VIII has not elected nor delegated anybody nor any group of persons to His Excellency (H.E.) the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo or any other institution to demand an Autopsy on the late Professor Mills for us, or on behalf of the family. We therefore want to state emphatically that any attempt to link the Chiefs of Ekumfi to any such action is malicious, untrue and mischievous, and must be treated with the contempt it deserve.
Ekumfi Nananom led by the Paramount Chief Odeefo Akyin VIII also wish to send a strong signal to anyone or group of persons purported to come from Ekumfi or elsewhere, and who allow themselves to be used to perpetuate such disgraceful and malicious act, may have to prepare to face the wrath of Nananom.
The late Professor Atta Mills must be allowed to rest in peace!
(Having said that, let’s look at the substantive issue)
We the Nananom of Ekumfi and our people have become aware of a highly disappointing and regrettable remarks made by H.E. the President when a family Queen mother and others inferable to be members of the late Professor Atta Mills’ family visited him at the Jubilee House to demand an Autopsy report of the late President.
In a video which has since gone viral, the President categorically and emphatically stated that he has decided to ignore the people of Ekumfi and deny us of developmental projects, because we did not vote to retain the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP’s) Parliamentary candidate for the constituency during the last General Elections.
We are extremely shocked by those statements and struggle to believe same to be true because we particularly did not believe that the President who is mandated by the Constitution to be responsible for the development of the country could politically segregate the country and treat others with disdain and dislike; and vehemently deny us development because we did not vote for his preferred candidate.
Per our understanding of the very Constitution which recognizes free and fair elections, one of which made His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufu-Addo the President, there is no provision in the 1992 Constitution which mandates the President to decide who the people of Ekumfi or for that matter any other constituency must elect to represent them in Parliament as their legislature.
We therefore cannot fathom why the President has abandoned all ongoing developmental projects in the constituency, particularly the construction of roads in Ekumfi, so the people of Ekumfi would suffer simply because we chose not to vote to retain Honourable Ato Cudjoe as Member of Parliament was not retained.
If this is the reason the President has neglected and denied us of developmental projects, then we demand scientific data to illustrate what the former MP did for the people of Ekumfi, before he ceased to be the MP for the people of Ekumfi. Our belief is that an accurate data would justify the President’s claim that Honourable Ato Cudjoe should have been retained by the people of Ekumfi.
Our call comes on the heels of the fact that the same Honourable Ato Cudjoe who is preferred by the President and whose exit from Parliament has become the reason the President has neglected Ekumfi, has once again lost miserably in the NPP’s internal party primaries to elect a parliamentary candidate for the 2024 General Election. If the President’s own party folks could reject Honourable Ato Cudjoe, why must the Chiefs and people of Ekumfi suffer for his exit in 2020?
We are deeply worried about the statement made by the President as it has called into question the people’s democratic “right to vote freely.” After all, the tenets of democracy include the ability of the people to freely elect who they deem fit to be their representative in Parliament.
The people of Ekumfi only exercised their democratic right during the last election and this right must never be used as a tool for punishing, by the very President who is enjoined by the 1992 Constitution and his own Oath of Office to uphold the Constitution of the country.
We therefore wish to draw the President’s attention to the unfortunate statements; asking him to revisit his notes, and ensure that all stalled developmental initiatives in Ekumfi start in earnest, so we could assume that the President regrets making those displeasing statements.
Having critically examined and analysed the President’s statement, we appreciate the various valid concerns raised by our people. We take this opportunity to appeal to the good people of Ekumfi particularly the youth who are calling on Nananom to respond in equal measure to remain calm and understand the fact that no matter how unfortunate the statement was, and the kind of pain it has caused all of us, H.E. the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufu-Addo remains the President and must be respected as such.