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Feature Article of Sunday, 17 June 2012

Columnist: Thompson, Kofi

Ghanaian Politicians: There Will Be Consequences

- If Your Actions Or Inaction Results In A Breakdown Of Law & Order In December

By Kofi Thompson

Every time there has been a military coup against a democratically elected regime in West Africa, I have written a piece asking the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to demand that the coup makers - in Guinea and Mali, for example - are forced to hand power back to the civilians they overthrew swiftly.

I thank the following who posted comments on www.ghanaweb.com: 'Cantankerous' who posted the comment with the title "DAFT. DAFT. DAFT" (2012-06-16 01:22:43); 'Tommy' who posted (2012-06-16 03:44:40) the comment entitled "FOOLISH IDEA. ARMY BEST IN BARRACKS" and 'Bumbebo' whose comment (posted from London 2012-06-16 09:14:15) was entitled "GAF not Needed", for sharing their opinions when commenting on my article entitled "December Polls: If Need Be The Ghana Armed Forces Must Act Swiftly To Save Ghana From The Consequences Of Electoral Violence".

I suggest they re-read the article again. I was neither calling for a military coup nor asking the military to mutiny. Far from that. Actually, I was hoping that the military has prepared plans to step in to prevent a breakdown of law and order - not take over the country (God forbid!).

Yes, in our democracy the army operates under civil power. And one hopes that the present Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) will rise to the occasion, were there to be a break down in law and order as a result of widespread violence over election results.

However, it is better to be safe than sorry. It is said that coming events cast their shadows. The posture of the hardliners in the biggest two political parties in Ghana, the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), does not inspire confidence.

For that reason, for the safety of the Republic, and to protect Ghanaian democracy - from the machinations of the greedy and ruthless plutocrats in our midst who masquerade as democrats - one hopes the Ghana Armed Forces is prepared for any contingency that will warrant their having to intervene swiftly and deal ruthlessly with those who resort to violence.

Ghana's political parties and politicians who lead them, must understand clearly that they will not be allowed to get away scot free, if their actions or inaction result in a total breakdown of law and order on polling day or its immediate aftermath. There will be consequences for them personally.

Tel: 027 745 3109.

Email: peakofi.thompson@gmail.com

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