The national chairman of the opposition National Democratic Congress, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, who is popularly known as “General Mosquito”, escaped assault at a party meeting in Tamale where the Northern Regional treasurer of the NDC, Hajia Shamima Yakubu, was assaulted by party members in the region.
Though Asiedu Nketiah was quickly evacuated to safety, the violence shows the deep-seated division and exposes internal strife within the NDC.
The chaotic incident happened at a stakeholders’ engagement organised by the party in Tamale.
The gathering, intended to foster peace and unity in the run-up to the 2024 general election, took an unexpected turn with dramatic twists, including a frantic chase, jabs at key figures and a physical altercation resulting in the severe beating of the regional treasurer, Hajia Yakubu.
The NDC treasurer is said to have sustained injuries to her face. She has been treated in hospital and discharged.
Reports suggest that she received punches during the confrontation. The victim has reported the incident to the Northern Regional police, who confirmed they have initiated an investigation into the matter.
The event, held at Golden Dream Hotel on 6 January 2024, began after the arrival of Chairman Asiedu Nketiah, who had travelled from Accra to Tamale for the stakeholders’ meeting.
The recent turmoil in the Northern Region of Ghana has sent shockwaves through the NDC, as Asiedu Nketiah found himself caught up in a whirlwind at the party engagement.
The regional NDC meeting took an unexpected turn when supporters expressed grievances over the treatment of Honourable Haruna Iddrisu, who was ousted as the Minority leader in Parliament a year ago.
The meeting quickly descended into a maelstrom of chaos, amid expressions of deep-seated discontent among party rank and file with the leadership change in the Minority Caucus of Parliament.
The situation grew tense as irate supporters brandished machetes, prompting General Mosquito to flee for his safety.
Machetes on show
The scenes of violence and the emergence of machetes in Tamale evoke a sense of déjà vu from the NDC. In 2019, the former president John Dramani Mahama purportedly warned that no one could beat the NDC in unleashing violence.
More recently, party members were captured in clips that went viral, wielding machetes around the office premises of the former president in Cantonments, Accra.
The NDC is struggling with the challenge of shedding this image of violence. The recent events in Tamale present a formidable obstacle to the party’s quest for unity and coherence.
Internal discontent, violent altercations and the flight of party leaders paint a disheartening picture of intensified discord and strife within the NDC, calling into question the unity narrative that party leaders earnestly seek to project.