Osafo Maafo accused of making ethnocentric comments
Presidential advisor claims Akyems played bigger role in independence fight
Ashanti youth group lambasts him over comments<>
Former Finance Minister, Yaw Osafo-Maafo has come under attack for comments deemed tribalistic, as contained in a leaked audio that went viral last week.
A group calling itself Bantama Youth Association issued a statement lambasting the Senior Presidential advisor who is said to have questioned the contribution of Ashantis to Ghana’s Independence struggle.
For members of the group, the comments were unnecessary and distasteful and must be retracted and an apology rendered to Ashantis.
In an interview with TV3, the group’s spokesman, Kwame Awuah Nimfour, said they were disappointed but not entirely surprised that such comments had come from Osafo-Maafo.
“We are not surprised that the contents of the alleged audio are coming from Yaw Osafo-Maafo. We are aware he has a history of making supposedly tribalistic comments.”
He added that his shock, however, was that, “Asantes will be drawn into an issue that is purely partisan and should not be tribalized.
“Hon Yaw Osafo Maafo is a tribal bigot. And I don’t understand why he opens himself up for insults from many people including the youth. If you are dealing with your party issues in your region, why must you attack Asantes?” he quizzed.
What Osafo Maafo said in the leaked tape
In the controversial leaked tape, the presidential advisor during a meeting with delegates of the New Patriotic Party in the Eastern Region, questioned the contribution of the Ashanti people while touting the Akyem tribe as having led the fight for independence.
Mr Osafo-Maafo who was speaking to the delegates ahead of the NPP’s recently held regional elections entreated the delegates to vote for an Akyem candidate while emphasizing the contributions of the tribe to the party.
His comments have since attracted harsh critique including from Nana Bonsu who is the Ahene Nana Hene of Asantehene Nana Otumfuo Osei Tutu.
The sub-chief in comments on a local radio station said it was an act of insanity for Mr Osafo-Maafo to suggest that the people of Akyem led the fight for Ghana’s independence while seeking to belittle the contribution of Ashantis.
“He is mad, very mad. Just tell him that he is mad. I say he is mad, what would Kwame Nkrumah also say? I am asking you. If he claims their grandfathers fought for independence what will Kwame Nkrumah also say?
“If Ghanaians have to be grateful, we should be grateful to Ako-Adjei. He was the one who went and brought Kwame Nkrumah. Ako-Adjei was the one who brought Kwame Nkrumah.
“If we are to give all the credit to Akyems for the fight for independence it means we won’t have to appreciate all the other tribes; Northerners will not be mentioned, Ashantis and all the others,” he fumed during an interview on Power FM.
The sub-chief in turn spelt out the impact of Ashantis in the formation of the governing New Patriotic Party, that gave Osafo-Maafo the chance to become an MP, a Minister and now a presidential advisor.
“The NPP he joins, was it the Akyems who formed it? NPP is not for them, they don’t know anything about its formation.
“Their UNC where did it go? Where did it travel to? When we vote how many votes does the NPP get from Akyem? Humans are just ungrateful. After a hungry man has been fed, they tend to lose their sanity,” he added.