That the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) is perplexed at the nomination of Professor Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang as running mate to Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is no secret.
And it does not seem that the series of attacks, often in the form of bare insults, on the personality of the former Vice Chancellor (VC) of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) would end soon.
The Minister of Communications in the Nana Addo government and the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ablekuma West Constituency, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful took her turn in Kumasi to repeat the Wontumi insult of witchcraft against Professor Jane Naana Opoku Agyemang. Speaking this Thursday on the punch radio show on Kessben FM the outspoken Minister claimed that the running mate of the NDC and former Minister of Education Professor Jane Opoku-Agyemang was full of witchcraft when she failed to stop the cancellation of teacher trainee allowance.
The Chairman of her party in the Ashanti Region Mr Bernard Antwi-Boasiako, also known as Wontumi speaking on a radio show a week earlier described the former Vice Chancellor as a witch. This received the condemnation of leading public figures and women’s groups. Captain Smart of Angel FM Morning show called the comments of Wontumi “disgraceful” and asked that he be called to order. This does not seem to have perturbed Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful.
Just as the public support for Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang appeared to have weakened the assaults on her personality, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful entered the fray in Kumasi with a claim that she is a witch.
It would be recalled that the Mahama government introduced a loan scheme for the Colleges of Education which removed the 40% quota system and increased the intake of teacher trainees by 60%. This allowed a lot of new teachers to be trained thus reducing the perennial teacher shortage and increasing quality education. The records show that it was a cabinet decision far removed from Professor Jane Naana Opoku Agyemang.
But Ursula Owusu would not have any of that, and having a unique opportunity on Kessben chose to squarely accuse the first female Vice Chancellor in Ghana of being a witch for failing to stop a cabinet decision and let the teacher be paid. Ironically, her government has failed to pay teachers and teacher trainees for several months, but she does not find anyone to be a witch for so doing.
This was not the first time Mr Ekuful has come to media attention for the use of witchcraft as an insult against Ghanaians. Responding to wide public claims that the ruling Akufo-Addo government failed to develop Ablekuma West, she emotively said that anyone who made that claim is a witch. This did not go down well with the public. Yet again she went on to make the “yɛa gye yɛ mæn” taunt on radio.
It comes as no surprise that the same frontline NPP woman who was active with the women groups who rose against the chances of Hajia Alima Mahama for consideration as the running mate of Mr Akufo Addo in 2008 now appears in another cloak of opposition to the rise of another woman, Professor Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang.
By Kingsley Lakle.