- John Dramani Mahama says some NPP government officials are intolerant of critique from political opponents
- According to the former president people who trade insults in political discourse have poor upbringing
Ex-President John Dramani Mahama has teared into Land and Natural Resources Minister, John Peter Amewu, for referring to him as a “conman”.
Mahama was unenthused by the diction used by the Minister to describe him after he criticized government’s handling of the fight against galamsey.
The Lands Minister was visibly incensed by the ex-president’s criticism and opted to go in hard on him by labeling Mahama as dishonest and a “conman”.
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“It is rather unfortunate statement that is coming from some political leaders. I am talking about the former president John Mahama… He cannot use galamsey at this time, thinking he can come back to power. I respect that man so much but for today I am disappointed in the kind of words he used in Kumasi … I am telling the small-scale miners this gentleman is a conman; he is deceiving them. If they dare go for him just because of galamsey this country will go down,” Amewu ranted.
However, Mahama has hit back insisting the Lands Minister’s comments only indicate that he did not have a proper upbringing.
Speaking at the opposition National Democratic Congress’s (NDC) 9th unity walk held in Bolga, the ex-President said it is sad that Amewu had to result to name-calling.
“I was not brought up to use unprintable names against my political opponents. The language you use in your political discourse is a reflection of your upbringing. If you were brought up well, it must reflect in the language that you use in your political discourse, and, so, you can call me any name,” Mahama responded.
He said he has noted that the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) government cannot stomach criticism from their political opponents.
According to him, officials of the current government are quick to use unprintable words on people who do not agree with their decisions and policies.
“Unfortunately, it looks like the current people in government cannot take criticism. When you offer any decision, they call you all kinds of unprintable names,” Mahama added.
“The simple point I made was that we have tried it before, we have gone after these young people with soldiers, it didn’t work, and, so, the best way to go is while you stop them from doing illegal small-scale mining, be working on providing them with alternatives.”
Explaining why he criticised government’s handling of the illegal mining issue, Mahama said he was only trying to prevent the current government from using a tactic that is bound to fail.
“The tactics of deploying military men to arrest illegal miners is not the way to go because my government has done it before but it failed. The solution is to bring a new mining [law] that will regulate the activities of the miners,” he remarked.
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