By Abdul Razak Bawa
Once upon a time, his voice was the most sought after and listened to when he wheezed into town with not only his American, but cowboy accent.
Listening to him back then, he was among the few brave men around, who dared to criticize the administration of Jerry John Rawlings.
Kofi Wayo, was your typical American returnee, who insulted the leaders, as well as the lead. Like many we have heard before, they make the problems of Ghana and by extension Africa look like, with a wave of a hand, it could go away.
Kofi Wayo, is a showman and a lover of cigar and did not shy to flaunt it anywhere he was, including on national television.
His level of confidence, bluntness, skills and political sagacity are all factors that have contributed to giving him an advantage and easy-go with what he does.
Kofi ‘Chuck’ Wayo, unlike others was different, he put his money, where his mouth is, when he jumped in the ring to contest in the parliamentary election to represent the people of East Ayawaso on the ticket of the New Patriotic Party, unfortunately he failed to win.
After losing to represent the people of Nima, he noisily resigned from the the NPP to join the People’s National Convention (PNC).
His intention for joining the PNC was so he could become the running mate to Dr Edward Mahama, when that did not materialized he later left the PNC, describing it as ‘chinchinga (khebab) party to form the now defunct United Renaissance Party (URP).
Chuck Kofi Wayo, simply by sheer political sagacity become one of the most sought after politician in the country. The public love him, the media is in a frenzy where ever he goes.
But, unfortunately the man who has kept public office holders accountable in the past is missing at a time, he is needed the most. The pervasive corruption, which has become a principle of state policy and waste of public funds that the country is witnessing under the Akufo-Addo government is unprecedented.
Men of valor, who found their voice when John Dramani Mahama was in office, have been cowed into seclusion and became the proverbial monkey “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil”.
They no longer see the wrongs that is going on in the country, the principles that got them talking in the past, should get them talking now, but no! they cannot be bothered because most of them are sitting at the dining table and enjoying the spoils of power. In other words, they are observing table manners; you don’t talk whiles eating.
Few men in history, have stayed true to their conviction regardless of who is in power and Kofi Wayo, is certainly one as far as Ghana is concerned.
This is because when it comes to the matter of personal conviction and the courage to stand firmly on one’s principles, I know for a fact that there are few persons dead or alive that match the towering height of Kofi Wayo’s candor and courage.
When he first made his entrance in the 90’s, he criticized the government of ex-president, Jerry John Rawlings, his disdain for that regime was what motivated him to join the New Patriotic Party (NPP). He was of the considered conviction that, the country under Jerry Rawlings was going in the wrong direction.
He was not only interested in criticizing, as many do, they sit in the comfort of their homes or offices to criticize every decision of the government, but he actually laced his boots, folded his shirt and join in bring about the change of government. He campaigned with former president John Agyekum Kufuor, he went round the country, preaching the message of change.
When Kufuor won and things were not going the way, Kofi Wayo, had envisaged, he jumped ship and started to take on the government. He actually resigned from the NPP, a party on whose ticket, he almost went to parliament. What drives him is not about self-aggrandizement, it is not about enriching himself at the expense of Ghanaians, if he was after any of these things, he would have gotten more than necessary.
Kofi Wayo, was an unrepentant Ghanaian, his love for his country, is what made him a household name. He can’t see his people suffering and look the other way, even when doing so, will mean, he getting his share of the loot.
He is perhaps one of the consistent politicians, I have come to know and admired. He will be with you today and when you deviate from that shared vision, he will be the first to call you out and tell you his peace of mind.
He spoke truth to power, no matter who was in power and how close they were once upon a time. His silence as I have mentioned earlier, at this critical hour is deafening.
Chuck Kofi Wayo, wherever you, Ghanaians need now more than ever. The 2024 election is not just any election, but a call of duty. The many voices of reason have all gone to sleep, when the rest of Ghanaians suffer in silence. Many Ghanaians have slipped into poverty, Ghanaians are suffering, taxes are suffocating them, they can no longer meet their basic needs, human dignity has been thrown to the dogs, Akufo-Addo and his few cronies are feeding fat on our collective heritage, when we complain they tell us to shut up, please Sir, if you still have the benefit of your tongue and legs, you have the work of God to do this year.
This is because, with the way things currently stand in the country, it is money, not performance, integrity etc, which win elections.
Ghanaians need you back, your silence has emboldened cronies of this government to think, they are no men in this country.
Gone are those good old days when the fear of Chuck Kofi Wayo, was the beginning of wisdom for Ghana’s power grabbers.
For your efforts at exposing the falsehoods of our leaders, for the privations you have suffered in this pursuit, for your many struggles and the attendant challenges that come with them, Ghana is thankful.
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