Ghana’s President, Nana Akufo-Addo last week came under heavy criticism for his choice of language at a political campaign rally.
Akufo Addo said while campaigning for his party’s Member of Parliament candidate in a by-election that his government has fulfilled its promises to Ghanaians.
The President said his government came to “fix Ghana” in two years and that it was only the “blind or deaf” who were not aware of the positive progress in the country.
But Ghana’s disability federation did not take kindly to the President’s metaphorical political statement.
The federation demanded that President Akufo-Addo apologized unreservedly for his comment. It said that the President’s comment has the “potential to portray the ‘blind’ and ‘deaf’ people in a negative light.”
The President heeded to the demands of the federation and issued an unqualified apology for his comment. He explained that he meant no harm to the disabled community.
President Akufo-Addo in a Facebook post said “Vis-à-vis the comments I made at the final rally prior to the holding of the by-election at Ayawaso West Wuogon, which was won by the NPP candidate so emphatically, I am glad the Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations recognizes it was a “political metaphor”.
“I did not intend any slight on Persons with Disabilities, nor would I ever, and I hope they know that.”
According to President if there had been any Government that has been on the side of Persons with Disabilities, “it is my Government.” “I apologize for any unintended slight from the ‘political metaphor’.”
Six people were shot during the by-election in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency near the capital Accra.
Gunshots and violence characterized the by-election in which voters were electing a new Member of Parliament (MP) for the area.
The seat became vacant after the demise of the incumbent Emmanuel Kyeremanteng Agyarko last year.
He represented the area on the ticket of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Ghana’s laws require that a fresh election is held once a sitting MP dies, resigns or is unable to carry out the required function.
The election was won by Lydia Seyram Alhassan, the spouse of the late MP on the ticket of the NPP.
Opposition rejects election results
The biggest opposition party the National Democratic Congress (NDC), boycotted the election after one of its MPs was assaulted.
The NDC MPs have subsequently refused to recognized the newly elected MP for the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency.
On Tuesday they walked out of parliament and besieged the national headquarters of the Ghana Police Service, demanding justice.