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General News of Tuesday, 13 February 2018


What really led to the breakaway of Citizen Ghana Movement from OccupyGhana

Legal Practitioner Ace Kojo Anan Ankomah play videoLegal Practitioner Ace Kojo Anan Ankomah

A leading member of OccupyGhana Ace Anan Ankomah has taken the lid off events that led to the exit of some key members of the group to form an entirely new group; the Citizen Ghana Movement.

Attributing the breakup to discrepancies as far as the vision and operations of the newly formed group was concerned, Mr. Ankomah said it was necessary that members who had different philosophical underpinnings found themselves like-minded persons to share in their ideas.

The formation of Occupy Ghana from the onset he explained was informed by the desire to keep up the momentum after the Occupy Flagstaff House demonstration organised by Nana Kwasi Awuah-led Concerned Citizens for Responsible Governance, an idea not all members were comfortable with hence the need for them to form another group that suits their school of ideas.

“You must remember that nobody went out to set up an organisation called OccupyGhana. We met at an event organised by another group. The Occupy Flagstaff House day was not called OccupyGhana, it was Occupy Flagstaff House, organised by a group called Concerned Citizens for Responsible Governance. We all met there, then after that, a few of us who met there said we need to sustain this momentum so we formed a back office group that was supporting the people who started that work. Along the line, it crystallised and became OccupyGhana. So OccupyGhana itself was formed about three months after the event, it wasn’t immediate” he recounted.

Ace Ankomah clarified that “you can understand that for a people who were thrown together by an event, our understanding of how to proceed will differ. We can do all things but I think that at some point some people need more expression. There are people who are activists per their various ways of being activists and so for me it was a philosophical difference as to the mode of operation. And at the end of the day, it is important that we allow everyone the opportunity to express himself or herself in the way the person considers best.

I didn’t want for example my view of pushing the Ghana agenda to limit somebody’s view and I didn’t want to be limited by somebody’s view. So when the philosophical underpinnings got to a head, it was only fair that [we say] you proceed this way, we proceed that way”.

Ace Ankomah refuted suggestions that the Citizen Ghana Movement broke away because Occupy Ghana was becoming increasingly political. On the contrary he said, Occupy Ghana was open to persons of all divide and was in no way partisan in its operations.

“Absolutely we are political. The organisation is not partisan and if anybody said that’s what led to it, that’s untrue. Citizen Ghana is political. We are all political, we are dealing with the politics of our nation but speaking for my group, we refuse to be partisan individuals are allowed to be.

Just that if you take a partisan position you lose your position and become a common floor member so those of our members who went into politics, we still kept them because we want to be able to influence decisions” he retorted and admitted that deputy Communications Minister “comes for the common floor member meetings but he won’t attend the directors meeting. He no longer holds the directorship”.

The Managing partner at Bentsil-Enchil, Letsa and Ankomah chambers was convinced that despite the splitting up of the two groups, the impact being made on the governance process by the two groups is positive and noteworthy.

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