Editor of the “New Crusading Guide” newspaper, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako says he is profoundly hurt at the behaviour of Mr Koku Anyidoho, former Communications Director in the erstwhile Mills administration to put up a semblance of camaraderie whiles harbouring deep hatred for him.
Koku Anyidoho on Tuesday accused the Senior Journalist of spewing falsehood against his father; one of the situations which led him (Koku) into politics in the first place.
Per his investigations at Ghana Telecom, Koku Anyidoho deduced that Kweku Baako contributed to the early retirement of his father, General Anyidoho by “President Kufour and his cohorts” with various articles he (Kweku Baako) published against the former military officer.
According to Koku, Kweku Baako “busied himself publishing falsehood about my father just to destroy him…the extent to which they spent a lot of time destroying people in this country. I just couldn’t take the falsehood, the lies…the deliberate attempts to destroy people’s careers just because of politics and for political expediency…”
But an emotional Kweku Baako, speaking candidly to Kwami Sefa Kayi on Wednesday’s edition of “Kokrokoo” on PeaceFM, appeared extremely astounded by Koku’s posture, particularly so when he thought the once frosty relationship between them had thawed.
Kweku Baako admitted that previously the rapport between him and the former Spokesperson for the late President Mills had been strained and sour, but believed it had changed for the better as the years rolled by.
He read a text message from Koku Anyidoho to him (Baako) dated 28th April 2013, to buttress his point.
“Thanks big brother, honestly, I recall and really appreciate the silent and mutually respectful brotherly relationship between us. Please count me as one of your younger brothers. God bless you”, the message read. He therefore found it difficult to understand how Koku could go on air and at such a time (one year anniversary of Prof. John Evans Atta Mills), and act as if he (Baako) was his greatest enemy on earth.
According to him, the text messages and other indications from Koku Anyidoho gave him reason to believe that their relationship had improved for the better; “but I am surprised at this turn of events”.
“He captured what he said about me within the commemoration of the death of President Mills and that is my difficulty. Why did he choose to bring that in at this material moment? As we speak, I have a very good relationship with Mr. Koku Anyidoho. Formerly, it was that of hostility and I didn’t understand. I was wondering what the problem was…then step by step our relationship started improving; even though I was surprised, I accepted it in principle. When I heard it (interview on Radio Gold), I asked where it (Koku’s outburst) was coming from…” he stated.
Kweku Baako then chronicled the relationship between General Anyidoho and himself. According to him, his newspaper, then Crusading Guide, wrote a publication on Ghana Telecom and the ‘fat allowances’ given to its board members including General Anyidoho, board chairman.
“It had nothing to do with the personality of his father,” he indicated.
He narrated that the dispute between himself and Koku Anyidoho’s father started in 1999 when an industrial action took place at Ashanti Goldfields Company (AGC).
“ The issue between his father and I was occasioned when an industrial action took place at AGC in 1999… we (Crusading Guide, the Weekend Statesman and the Independent) took a stand against what government was doing and then government set up a committee to look into the issues being raised. The chairman of the committee was General Anyidoho (father of Koku Anyidoho). He granted an interview to the BBC and made statements that we considered prejudicial to the work given to him. We also followed up with stories that apparently some of the workers who took part in the strike action were not from AGC”
Subsequently, Kweku Baako said he was invited by the Committee chaired by General Anyidoho to answer questions on their stand. The letter dated 4th July 1999 and signed by Lieutenant Col S. Odai reads:
“Investigations Into Ashanti Goldfields Company-Obuasi Industrial Action”
The three-man fact finding committee set up by the government to investigate the recent industrial strike action at Ashanti Gold Fields Company Ltd, Obuasi is currently sitting in Accra.
It will be appreciated if the Editor of the Crusading Guide can appear before the committee on 8th July 1999 at 10 am in the conference room of the Ministry of Employment and Social Welfare to assist with the ongoing investigations.
Your cooperation in this regard is highly anticipated.”
Kweku Baako said he declined the invitation because according to him the Chairman of the Committee, General Anyidoho had already made statements ‘prejudicial’ to the work of the Committee.
“When I received the letter, I replied, declining the invitation to appear before the committee. This was because of the interview granted by the chairman of the committee on BBC. The interview indicates that they had already found the AGC management guilty and if that was the case, I don’t see how I can assist...They then recommended to the National Media Commission to institute a disciplinary action against the Editor of the Weekend Statesman and me. That was the problem my paper had with General Anyidoho…If you take Ghana telecom out, the rest were basically political and the role a senior serving military officer was playing and that role was legitimate target for scrutiny and critic; which I did and I have no regrets,” he recounted.
...In the year 2000 ACDR organized a forum in Kumasi as part of campaign matters and it was nothing but politics and General Anyidoho was the chairman of the occasion while serving as a military officer. Everything they said and did there was political…and the Crusading Guide said no way! It was a complete violation of the military law. We quoted the Armed Forces Act. I didn’t fight a battle just talking by heart…I wrote an editorial challenging General Anyidoho that I disagree that we should have ACDR in the Armed Forces of Ghana. Wherein lies my wrong if you mount such platform and talk politics and I write an article about you," he asked rather rhetorically.
He urged the former Communications Director to gather his facts properly so that they (Kweku Anyidoho and Kweku Baako) can have a ‘meaningful debate’ because there is indication that the findings he made at Ghana Telecom is not his only basis for making such comments.
“If it was just because of the files he found at Ghana Telecom he would have realized that it was only about allowances and nothing else,” Kweku Baako added.
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