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General News of Saturday, 22 February 2020


It’s wrong to use words like tyranny in our democracy - Kofi Bentil to Minority

Senior Vice President of IMANI-Africa, Kofi Bentil Senior Vice President of IMANI-Africa, Kofi Bentil

Senior Vice President of policy think tank IMANI-Africa, Kofi Bentil, has stressed that no reason is enough for the National Democratic Congress to use words like ‘tyranny’ in reference to the government and president.

According to him, such words can’t be used in a democratic country like Ghana since the people elected Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as president, thereby giving him the powers he possesses.

“You can have many reasons why you feel aggrieved but words like tyranny cannot be properly used in a democracy like this. The people of this country decided to elect president Nana Akufo-Addo and give him the powers he has,” he said when he appeared on this week’s edition of Newsfile on JoyNews.

The Minority told journalists at a press conference that the president has “conducted the affairs of state with the kind of tyranny, despotism, and authoritarianism that frightens many objective observers” since assuming office.

This was after the parliamentarians who were clad in black attires walked out of the house of legislature minutes before the president gave his 2020 State of the Nation Address.

The leader of the side, Haruna Iddrisu, revealed at the press conference that the act was in protest to a number of issues which include the government’s failure to release some five percent of the District Assemblies’ Common Fund, attacks on journalists, the Electoral Commission’s bid to create a new voters’ register as well as the president’s handling of the report by the Emile Short Commission on the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election violence.

But reacting to this, Kofi Bentil said if the NDC feels their concerns are being ignored and wish to change that, they should work hard to win more seats in the coming elections.

“It is nation-building if you feel you are not being heard go and campaign hard, regain your Majority in Parliament, become the President next time but words like tyranny cannot be properly used in a democracy like this.”

The legal practitioner further urged politicians to elevate some national events about partisan bickering and remember that whatever they do or say has a level of impact on the country as a whole.

“you may have a reason why you are upset and want to protest but I want to let them reflect on the fact that this is not just about them, it has an effect on the rest of the nation.”

He added that they can also seek redress in court over their grievances.