Politics of Saturday, 11 February 2017
A senior lecturer at the University of Ghana Faculty of Law, Prof. Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu, has called on Ghanaians to guard jealously the peace the country is enjoying.
She said peace was a priceless and fragile commodity which must keenly be guarded. “There is the need to properly relate with people, especially in the post-election period to avoid conflict,” she advised.
Prof. Mensa-Bonsu made the call at the Second Annual Peace Lecture organised by the Rotary Club of Accra West, in collaboration with the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), in Accra last Wednesday.
Emphasising peace as a critical basis for national development, the law professor said; "This is why there is always the need to nurture peace. We should not wait till the need arises for peace before we go for it."
Prof. Mensa-Bonsu, who was the guest speaker at the event, spoke on the theme; “Growing our peace - peace management and humanitarian action.”
Prof. Mensa-Bonsu further explained that the creation of a new sense of community - social media - had enhanced access to information on the global plane.
She indicated that technology had enhanced the concept of freedom of association such that persons in far-away areas could bring pressure to bear on political office holders to respond to particular concerns.
“Politicians can reach their electorate in chat rooms by tweets, and so eliminate those who block access to office holders for their own political gains,” she added.
Prof. Mensa-Bonsu noted that although the technological world had created avenues for governments to find solutions to problems, there was still the need to include civil society organisations in promoting dialogue on peace.
“The concept of conflict management explains that conflict is dynamic and must be assisted, but can not completely be eliminated,” she noted.
Consequently, she advised the government and civil society groups to build more strategies to solve conflicts.
In an interview after the ceremony, the General Secretary of the Christian Council of Ghana, Rev. Dr Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong, suggested that national reconciliation should be made a permanent feature in national politics to promote peace.
He expressed concern that many civil society organisations had stopped spreading the word of peace after the election, which, he said, was counter productive.
“I realised that many people have grievances over the years and so they are now retaliating.
“They just wait for an opportunity to express the pain that has been within them for some years,” he said, adding that that was why there was the need for national reconciliation to become a permanent feature in the body politic of the country.