When the member of parliament for North Dayi Constituency, George Loh, was given the opportunity to critique the manifesto of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), he decided to sink low. He was on Joy FM’s Newsfile programme yesterday, and when his fellow MP for Obuasi West, Kwaku Kwateng, had finished praising the manifesto, it was his turn to punch holes into the opposition party’s manifesto.
Mr. Loh started his submission with a claim that the NPP’s manifesto was premised on dishonesty. He had a long laugh, putting his fellow panelists and the audience in a suspense. He created the impression that he had a deadly blow, which could crush the manifesto. Then he pointed to the photograph of the NPP’s flagbearer, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
His issue? Nana Akufo-Addo’s photograph had been manipulated to look fairer than his true complexion. This was the reason he said the manifesto was premised on dishonesty.
The MP was right. Computer software can enhance the look of a photograph. Many political campaign photographs on billboards and posters have been edited to enhance their beauty. So what is the point in dwelling on an enhanced photograph when the substantive issues are waiting to be addressed? Suprisingly, he would later accuse the show host of not giving him enough time to deal with the issues.
Perhaps, George Loh also should pay a little attention to President John Mahama’s photograph on page 5 of the NDC’s manifesto. In an attempt to enhance the President’s looks for such an important photograph, the team decided to give the president a make-up.
While admiring the president’s picture, something caught my eyes – the incompetence of the make-up artist. The brown facial powder or whatever was used for the make-up did not stop at the skin of the President’s forehead. It covered part of the president’s hair. The make-up blunder is so obvious that it beats one’s imagination why that photograph was used. If the make-up artist had a problem with his or her eyesight, what about the photographer, the designer and the those who selected the photograph?
When I first saw the President’s photograph, I smiled to myself and wondered who at all did that funny make-up on the First Gentleman of our land. I didn’t think it deserved a comment on my Facebook wall until George Loh told the whole nation that the enhancement of a photograph is enough to render a whole manifesto dishonest. Is the President’s make up also a sign of dishonesty? Or incompetence, if one is permitted to use this forbidden word?
It’s about time to remind our politicians that we see the trivialities on all sides of the political divide. But when it is time for serious business such as analysis on Newsfile, we expect them to lift the discourse a bit higher. If you try hard to get at your opponent, you end up drawing unnecessary attention to the deficiencies of your own candidate.
And that is what George Loh did on Newsfile yesterday.