Ghana’s former High Commissioner to Namibia and Botswana, Alhaji Haruna Atta, has revealed to Adom News that his relationship with his friend Kwaku Baako is not one that he would describe as cordial.
In an exclusive interview with Adom News’ political reporter, Frank Worlanyo Nyonator, about his life as a journalist, politician, high commissioner and author, the retired journalist said over the years, the two of them have drifted towards different political philosophies that view development through different lenses.
On July 23, 1998, the duo became the most famous personalities, making headlines both at home and abroad because they had taken on the wife of the head of state, Jerry Rawlings, following which they were both jailed.
They were sentenced to a 30-day jail term by an Accra High Court as editors of the ‘The Guide and the Statesman’ newspapers respectively.
Commenting on their arrest and jailing, Alhaji Haruna Attah said he remains convinced that their actions were for the good of society.
Over the years, Kweku and Haruna have helped in growing and shaping Ghana’s democracy.
In a strange twist of fates, however, the two personalities have found themselves aligned with the two major political parties.
While Abdul Malik Kweku Baako openly declares his support for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) even though he’s from a CPP background, Haruna ended up with the NDC.
Many political watchers were left surprised when Haruna Atta, for instance, accepted an appointment from former president John Mahama as Ghana’s High Commissioner to Namibia and Botswana, particularly when that political tradition was founded on the principles of late president Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings, a man he (Haruna) so much fought against when he was in power.
In years past, the mention of the name, Coffee Shop Mafia, sent shivers down the spine of many politicians or their associates because it was the perception that it consisted of a group of journalists who were mercenaries with the sole purpose of making sure their ‘arch enemy’ the Jerry Rawlings regime went off the scene.
With the passage of time, however, Mr Atta said he decided to stay away from such places as the Labone Coffee Shop, especially around the time when the political impasse between John Dramami Mahama and Nana Akufo-Addo reached its peak.
The retired journalist refused to answer questions directly on the leadership style of president Nana Akufo-Addo except to say that if he compares the former NDC administration to the current one, he believes John Mahama was a better leader.
He compared the former leader to the likes of Kwame Nkrumah and Jerry John Rawlings
The former editor of the Statesman and Accra Daily Mail newspapers also revealed that he is working on a book for publication soon.
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