Denis Andaban writes.....

Many students are bombarding us with unusual motivational messages as they announce their hopefulness in the upcoming elections. Many, per their postures, think that the one who posts the more attractive pictures or messages is the one who merits to be elected to whatever position they do seek to be elected into.

Frankly speaking,  some of the messages are monotonous and exclusively excruciating,  to say the least. One may have to consider using a mountain of phone batteries if you really want to stay alive on student social media pages these days.

Candidature is becoming more of beauty contest.  I believe one day,  SRC will organise photo beauty contest for these people to show the skills of their editors,  of course not themselves since some of them physically look differently from what we see being circulated.  Hehehe.... that is on a more humorous note.

 If I were a candidate,  I would act differently but since am not,  all hopefuls may consider my piece as free political counselling for lack of expression. Or will you call it a political strategy?  No I think it cannot be a political strategy once it is exposed to the whole student populace. That not withstanding, the smart ones can satisfactorily feed on it.

First and foremost,  I would have been thinking of the cause of this seeming unending leadership nemesis in student leadership. It is an indisputable fact that every now and then, we, students complain of poor leadership. In fact,  every SRC leader who had been elected, use "poor leadership" as a propaganda tool which worked effectively in their favor. Considering that fact,  it means, the most cheapest political strategy is to make a hell on incumbent leadership.  Well,  this is common in national politics too. In politics,  I always say that existing weakness is the strongest missile to power desperados.

Ironically,  hopefuls in my view have never taken time to research into the failures of our past and incumbent leaders but they are quick to research into the effective winning strategy here in campus. They understand tribalism,  religion, departments and physical outlooks and what they contribute in any election victory. That is the very simple reason why there is a cyclical leadership predicaments in students' leadership front. Understanding this simple analogy by any candidate that knowing the weaknesses and strengths of past and incumbent leaders, put them in a better political psych not only to win but to deliver to expectations.

Again,  hopefuls need an imaginary on the dichotomy between lofty ideas and the reality. The fact is that,  you may have the best of ideas but if the environment doesn't meet your ideology,  be sure of becoming the most incompetent and incapable leader.  This, the larger student body may not understand and hence the constant bastardization.

Such bastardization may be justifiable though because when you create a short path to the village market,  be sure that others will find convenience in using it too.  This is why sometimes I don't have sympathy for some student leaders who are under verbal attacks.
If I were a candidate,  I would have studied the environment and my ideology to understand the compatibility and otherwise
of same. It would help you estimate your failures and successes. That is the best confidence you can ever get as a politician.

If I were a candidate,  I will not be recycling or repeating some of the promises and strategies made by past leaders or present leaders we see as failures if that is true. It simply means that we are going to trend on same path and expect same results. Recently,  in one of my casual chats with my very good friends,  Hon Adingo and Hon Raphael,  a beautiful lady came and greeted and told us that she is a hopeful for SRC WOCOM.  I congratulated her for that bold decision since few ladies have the heart to withstand this scary, expensive and exhausting political game. We asked her to mention just one major campaign promise she has. Hmmmm..... Politicians. She gave us a very lofty and sugarcoating promise, that she would offer a sponsorship package to those who are poor.  When I pushed her further,  she gave me a very scintillating and romantic smile as an answer. You see,  what I want to say is that,  campaign goes with unique and creative ideas. We cannot always choose to follow the crowd. No!

I remember how my good friend, His Excellency David Kojo Acheampong used to be very loud in LA meetings. Today am sure if you consult him privately,  he might say it is not that easy. If I were a candidate,  I would have approached current leadership and ask to know of the realities before making my promises.  It is only when we understand  the current situations that we can make a positive change. If we continue to make political capital out of issues, then our problems will keep on escalating like wildfire. Isn't the current state of leadership an opportunity for potential politicians to learn lessons and begin to envisage alternative remedy to our contemporary challenges as an institution?

I am not discrediting any candidate but I can say without mincing words that some of these hopefuls do not even know the institutional structures and I wonder what they can do should they win by their beauty or tribal and religious affiliation.  A student recently asked me what we do in student parliament. According to the student,  he doesn't know what goes on in student parliament and Local Assembly.  You might think I'm exaggerating but that is the undiluted reality. I believe the likes of such students are many and some are hopefuls. Hmm..
Why can't such students learn these basic structures just by involvement and participation?

If I were a candidate,  I would have been thinking of going beyond mere greetings and unusual dressing to fighting for students and participating in students' activities. Unnecessary handshakes and very tempting hugs are what others use to lure gullible students to support them. Such people also, are the worse performing leaders when they get power.  That is needless to be copied by any candidate who wants to bring in creative and innovative ideas to bare. They are a good number of colleagues who started fighting for students' interest right from level hundred. If I want to mention names, people might think I am being selective but we know ourselves.

Lastly,  candidates must stay clean from any dirty propaganda.  Real leaders stay clean and focus in projecting themselves through pragmatic and realistic policies. Propaganda has taken a centre stage of politics on campus. In fact,  it is sometimes effective as indicated in my earlier rendition but I always say that it is also the conduit for needless opposition after getting power. It is the only investment that gives back incompetence and failure as returns. Take it or leave it.

I urge all students to critically dissect and digest the promises of candidates who will soon visit us in our hostels.  Don't allow beauty or handsomeness to compromise your dreams of seeing COLTEK a better place to be.

"Guantanamo team" is readily available to draw any political strategy to you on request.

Shall be back..........

Denis Andaban.


I dedicate this article to all parliamentarians of UEW-K.

Author: Denis Andaban

Denis Andaban is a young writer and practising journalist. He is also a young teacher who has an unrepentant passion for writing. He has written feature articles ranging from politics, social issues, academic and relationship. He also writes news for many online media portals. Currently, He is reading B A English Language Education at the University of Education, Winneba, Kumasi. Denis Andaban is a native of Fian in the Upper West Region

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