Feature Article of Sunday, 8 April 2012
Columnist: Koduah, Reagan Adomah
As violence has began to show its ugly head long before the real 2012 election day, it is amazing that President Mills still finds time for mere words without corresponding action. We were all witnesses to the bi-elections organised under the watch of this Mills administration and how all of them were characterized by violence, intimidation and total chaos. Even Assemblymen elections, for the first time in history saw pockets of violence and unnecessary chaos for which even the EC had to appologise to Ghanaians. No registration for elections has ever met the level of violence that this 2012 one has seen.
Having built this bad record in just three years in office, President Mills should have learnt by now to start putting up pragmatic measures to stop what has already started showing hue and cry long before the real day. His failure to nip this in the bud will leave a bad image for his person and his leadership as a whole. It is disappointing that electoral violence has capitalized all minor elections under the watch of the man introduced to us as "Asomdwoehene", even district assembly elections. It is even unbelievable that mere registration has turned into a battle.
I can never say here that President Mills should be held accountable for any single mishap in this biometric registration. But if I will like to be very plain, president Mills and his administration has emboldened hooligans and criminals who have come to learn that causing any mayhem in the name of "NDC foot soldier or supporter" is not punishable.
We will vividly remember how criminals in party colors looted toll boots, lorry stations and NHIS offices and went free. Some burnt down their own party offices, unlawfully chased out DCEs and MCEs out of their offices. Some murdered perceived NPP supporters in broad day light. All of these people, many of them identified and recognized failed to enter the law books and are still the same people among others causing problems in our registration centers today.
Just three years back if they were able to kill people right in front of a police station and have walked free till today what will scare them from attacking innocent civilians who are just willing to register and exercise their right of franchise. It is even more worrying that in spite of all these the president has not issued a single statement to condemn these barbaric acts but will rather go about pretending holiness.
His claim on his registration day after confrontations with journalists that he does not like power stained with blood was another populist and hypocritical talk. It was a chance to energize the law enforcers to deal with those imbeciles ruthlessly. It was a time to throw his weight behind the police and enforce the red alert he has promised Ghanaians and not a time to tell which kind of power he like. The power he is handling is already stained with the blood of the dead in Agbogbloshie (Odododiodio), Chereponi, Akwatia, Tamale and The blood of the 12 year old who was shot in the foot in Kumasi.
I think it is about time the president put away the mask and begin acting with his real face. The cheap talk is long overdue.
What is preventing the president from condemning the evil acts going on. Even right under his nose, his own so called aid; Lantey Vanderpuye is brewing all kinds of violence and going ballistic even on air. Daring people to face him for a show down in Odododiodio, and the head of state is silent. Many like myself are beginning to believe that president Mills has approved of all these atrocities.
If our guess is wrong then he should spare us the talk and act now. Ghana is more precious to us than all the political parties combined.
Reagan Adomah Koduah. London, UK.