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Mahama’s Do-Or-Die Statement Not Good For Our Democracy – Yaw Gyampo

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Associate Professor at the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana Ransford Yaw Gyampo says former President John Dramani Mahama could have used a different expression than ‘Do or die’ in referring to his party’s disposition towards the 2024 elections.

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Prof Gyampo said as a leader, Mr Mahama failed to communicate effectively because one mark of leadership is “to say what you mean and mean what you say”.

Therefore, if a leader has to come out to provide further explanations over what he says, he failed the first time, he noted.

Prof Gyampo was speaking as a panelist on The Keypoints on TV3/3FM on Saturday, September 11.

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He was speaking in reference to Mr Mahama’s pronouncement in an interview on Techiman-based Akina Radio on Tuesday, September 7 at the start of the second phase of his Thank You tour.

“We have learnt our lessons from happenings during the 2020 polls,” he said.

“The 2024 elections will be won or lost at the polling station. It will be do-or-die at the polling stations. The right thing must be done during the polls. We will win the elections at the polling station and won’t wait for collation centre results nor petition the Supreme Court if aggrieved,” he added.

He later stood by the statement, which many considered incendiary, and said it was only an idiomatic expression and those who did not understand it should go grab their dictionaries and find the meaning for themselves.

“Those who don’t understand English should stop the school interpretation,” he stated.

But Prof Gyampo claims already people whose education is not that high are taking the meaning as it is.

“I talk to people to be able to write [and] to be able to earn a living and if you speak to people, this statement which is supposed to be harmless in the English Language has fired them up and all of a sudden, they are beginning to assert themselves and be talking about certain things that makes you believe that tomorrow if they say ‘Jack’, they will fight and they will want to do all manner of things.

“And I am saying that this is not quite good for our democracy.”

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