The opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) has criticized supposed ethnocentric comments made by the parliamentary nominee of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Tamale North constituency, Alhassan Suhuyini.
Suyuhini, who is also the host of Radio Gold’s ‘Alhaji & Alhaji’ show, called on voters in the region to turn out in their numbers to vote for President Mahama on election day as he was one of their own.
However, a Deputy Communications Director of the NPP, Anthony Karbo, has said the comments made by Suhuyini, although unfortunate, were unsurprising and indicative of his party, the NDC’s strategy for the elections.He believes that the NDC had often used tribal sentiments to coerce voters into supporting the party in the elections in order to ensure development in that part of the country.
“For Mr. Suhuyini to make these assertions, it only exposes the NDC’s long-held strategy of blackmail. They have blackmailed our people into believing that until a Northerner becomes president there is no way our problems of poverty and underdevelopment can be addressed,” Anthony Karbo said.
According to him, Suhuyini’s comments are condemnable and out of place as the Northern Region had historically supported other candidates who were not from the North.
“The comments of Mr. Suhuyini are quite unfortunate and must be condemned. They are reckless and in fact, goes to insult our very existence as a people and he must bow down his head in shame. He talks about the fact that Rawlings comes from the Volta Region and Voltarians voted for him but Northerners voted massively for Rawlings as well.”
Anthony Karbo noted that, the idea that development in particular depends on whether those areas have representation in government was misleading, as the problems in the north persist despite having had four years of the Mahama administration.
“It’s quite clear that the President repeated this same call and Northerners voted for him in 2012 to become president, and look at the kind of rot and embarrassment we have seen, the monies that have been squandered at SADA. Especially when the President comes from this part of the country and knows the problems and watched unconcerned how his fellow Northerners squandered the money. Nowhere in the President’s tour did he talk about SADA or account to the people for the over 250 million cedis allocated to SADA.”
“Many of the schools in the Northern Region are waiting for their feeding grants. We were always told that it was because we didn’t have a Northern president who knew the difficulties of our people. President Mahama has benefited from the school feeding grant and now as president, many years on, this school feeding grant is still a problem.”