Feature Article of Monday, 21 March 2011
Columnist: Transient Justice
After months of waiting and massive failure on the part of the UN, AU, ECOWAS and other bodies I think it is about time Atta Mills negotiated a solution for the Ivory Coast. I propose a panel of 4 individuals including Atta Mills, former President Kufuor, Former President Rawlings, and Nana Addo in a room with Ouattara and Gbagbo were the premise will be nobody leaves until a deal is reached. As it is, there are too many foreign interests along with other ills which are preventing the problem from being solved properly thus, this “radical” solution must be taken in order to get the country back on track, preserve peace, and give it back to who it belongs to namely, the people!
As it is, the situation in the Ivory Coast is difficult. Ghana is one of the few countries that has stayed neutral long enough to solve the problem and be seen as non biased by both parties. The other war mongers have long been discredited or proven to be puppets of more powerful states thus, they have no real ideas on how to end this in a relatively agreeable manner to all parties involved. Some out of pure selfishness have been looking to benefit off Ivory Coast misery while others refuse to think outside the box on how to solve the issue. Well, good news I have a solution that I want the 4 aforementioned individuals to negotiate.
The simple answer to solving the problem is a power sharing deal. At this point I am certain some are already screaming insults at me saying that this has been tried before and, Ivory coast has passed that stage but, follow my whole logic before you condemn the idea.
When I say a power sharing deal I am not talking about having a situation were Ouattara becomes the prime minister and Gbagbo remains president for one term, on the contrary, I am talking about a intelligent and systematic way to solve the problem which I will lay out in outline form.
1) Both must sign a document indicating they are not the president of the Ivory Coast. As it is, none of them have a legitimate legal claim to being the president and anyone trying to justify either of them being the president will have to over look many illegalities that occurred in naming an individual as the president. Let me keep it simple: There is no legal president of the Ivory coast. We are not in the Colonial Era anymore were the rules apply differently to those of us in developing countries. If any man claims to believe in law, sovereignty, and has an iota of dignity they will arrive at the conclusion that there is no legal president in the Ivory Coast.
2) A 7 month transition period must be agreed to in which several things occur: - All the rebels and thugs must disarm. As it is the former thugs/rebels are preparing themselves to create the type of environment that thugs/rebels thrive in. Namely, in an environment that typifies what is referred to as a “failed state”. Thus, this condition must be set and enforced. - The Ghanaian Electoral commission, one of the best and most credible in the world, must be given the task of organizing free and fair elections in the Ivory Coast and having the final call on who has won based solely on the ballots counted in what will be a free and fair election. - All poling stations must have both observers and cameras in which every minute of the voting period is captured. The observers can watch the election abut, no external interfering or condoning of illegalities. Simply put, observers sole role should be to ensure that a legal vote occurs and every ballot is counted. - Bring the economy back so the poor farmers and other masses within the Ivory coast can live. The people should not have to suffer for during this crisis.
- No witch hunt for what has happened within the last few months. In times like this everybody is a victim thus, a witch hunt is counter productive.
In the absence of a president, a transitional government should be run by the parliament of the Ivory coast and, it’s main objective should be to run the non military affairs of the state such as working on the economy and working in its capacity to help facilitate the up coming election. Keep in mind that both Gbagbo and Ouattara will not be involved in these decisions but, a governing body which represents the masses most.
Atta Mills must initiate the team of four and get started as soon as possible because, the longer things linger the worse they get. The main people being punished right now are those of lower socio-economic status while the political elites are still living as they were before the crisis started thus, the situation is urgent for the common people who are often voiceless. Lets give them a voice and solve this problem once and for all.