Call Wontumi to Order – Feminist CSOs calls out NPP attacks on Prof. Naana Jane

The Alliance of Feminist Civil Society Organisations (AFCSOs) has condemned derogatory remarks against Prof. Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, by the Ashanti Regional Chairmanof the New Patriotic Party, Bernard Antwi Boasiako, aka Chairman Wontumi.

Chairman Wontumi, who spoke on one of his radio stations in the Northen region suggested the 2024 Running Mate of the NDC was secretly married to Mr. Mahama and that she originated from the Northern Region, not the Central Region.

The Feminist CSOs have condemned the unsavoury attack have issued a strongly worded statement calling on leadership of the NPP to bring Chairman Wontumi to book.

In a statement issued by its Executive Director, Alimatu Issahak, the Alliance expressed “great concern” Wontumi’s comments describing them “completely unacceptable”.

It said, attacking the personality of Prof Naana Jane Opoku Agyeman, a former Minister of Education and the first female Vice Chancelor of the University of Cape Coast, is simply indicative of backward views and stereotypes against women, particularly those aspiring to high political leadership.

The statement also expressed surprise at the silence by the NPP leadership since the unfortunate comment was made.

Praising Prof. Opoku-Agyemang for demonstrating that leadership was about competence and the ability to serve one’s nation with the utmost integrity, the Alliance described her as a distinguished scholar, a conscientious public servant, and a role model.

Read the full statement below:

The Alliance of Feminist CSOs has noted with a great concern the utterance made by the Ashanti Regional Chairman of NPP Bernard Antwi-Boasiako (Chairman Wuntumi) against Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang on her marital status and region of origin completely unacceptable and therefore call on the party’s leadership to call him to order with immediate effect.
These unacceptable comments seem to be coming from members who hold key leadership positions in the party’s hierarchy.
First it was the Majority leader and now no other person than the party’s Ashanti regional chairman. It appears to us that a deliberate orchestrated attempt to discredit the personality of the Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang is being executed. Since Chairman himself is a discredited individual occupying such an important position we have nothing to tell him directly except to fall on the leadership of the NPP to call him to order.
These comments by chairman Wuntumi not only unfortunate but condemnable and goes further to confirm his backwardness and stereotype against women especially aspiring greater heights in political leadership. It appears that some functionaries within the NPP such as chairman Wuntumi do not want to run an issue-based campaign even with an accomplished female Professor who remains one of Ghana’s longest public servants with unblemished reputation and enviable track record as a public servant.
While the vile attacks against the female running mate of the NDC continues, so far the NPP leadership have said nothing about the conduct of these members. Are they in support of the conduct to deliberately run down her personality or they want to have an issue based campaign? We caution them that these attacks if not stopped will be met with an equal measure from the Alliance of Feminist CSOs and its members across the country.
Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang has shown so far that leadership is about no other but competence and ones ability to deliver service to ones nation with utmost integrity. A woman described as a distinguished scholar, a conscientious public servant and a role model. Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang is known by many as a woman who embraces all regardless of ones background. Her nomination which she has earned barely on merit further serves as an inspiration to lots of Ghanaian young women. Therefore any attempt to tarnish her image will not wash.
It is completely unacceptable that a whole professor of such great accomplishment who has served Ghana with utmost dedication and commitment in her entire adult life will be met with such baseless and demeaning attacks in a public space in her quest to further serve Ghana in a bigger capacity. A comment about the professor’s marital status and regional origin by chairman Wuntumi is baseless and has no merit on her competence and her impactful track record. This is not the first time such disrespectful comment is coming from chairman Wuntumi he made similar comment against the Professor on 10th July, 2020 and up till now no apology has been rendered to the Professor. This simply cannot be the way to go in 21st century politics with such backwardness.
We therefore call on the party leadership to call Chairman Wuntumi to order and advise party members to desist from making such unguided comments in the future.
We also call on all well meaning Ghanaians to disregard his comments and treat it with all the contempt that it deserves.

Yours faithfully
Alimatu Issahak
Executive Director

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