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Opinions of Wednesday, 21 September 2005

Columnist: Adofo, Rockson

Are The Government And NPP Serious About ....

..Democracy And The Rule Of Law?

The grey-hair man, though " grey hair is not a repository of wisdom", has emerged from the cave into which he withdrew in consultation with his inner conscience, to share his views, throwing light on the dangerous political and economic path needlessly being towed by President Kufuor and his government. One just wonders the Ghanaian interpretation, understanding and application of Democracy, the Rule of law and the Human rights laws. It baffles any curious mind to see the incessant twisting; straightening and breaking of the very qualities of a system of government we crave, in our tentative attempts to live as a people of a free country. No doubt, the Ghanaian proclivity to go the usual "extra miles" when offered the opportunity, in their delusive minds to outrun the authors of an idea, may explain why this unethical perception towards things. The exaggerated signal to the world that Ghanaians can also fit into the term "modern", shaken off the shackles of intimidation and slavery under the very hands of their own kind, make them break the rules of the game to prove how assertive, but deceptively free indeed, they are. The unfortunate perpetuation of the misapplication, abuse of the system, is in continual perpetration by the very people we however, have entrusted with the onus to oversee to its successful implementation.

The NPP government of unseasoned politicians, technocrat-lawyers with rabid view of letting translate in verbatim, the fullest theoretical implications of democracy, the rule of law and human rights laws into practice, will not only bring about the failure of the much touted ideology, but the fall of the country. Do we know that the rule of law and human rights laws are a two-way flow traffic, simultaneously bestowing certain freedoms and requiring of the people some duties and obligations, to safeguard the peace, safety and protection of the citizens and the nation? Do we accept the fact that the practical implementation of the theoretically ascribed tenets of democracy and the rule of law can hardly be attained 100%? For a well- meaning government to run smoothly, to ensure the maximum practical attainment of the rule of law, human rights laws in a democracy, the requisite duties and obligations of the citizens must effectively be enforced side by side the enjoyment of the freedoms inhere. Having their heads done in, walking the fine lines of the theoretical stipulations of the rule of law in a democratic dispensation, as "the gentle ones", will surely let culminate in the diabolic aspirations of the tyrant murderer Mr. Jeremiah John Rawlings; the violent seizure of the reins of government by our now professional soldiers once again becoming unprofessional, dabbling in politics as the usual misfits.

The reality of the looming threat posed by Rawlings through his intentional tantrum ranting, designed to incite usurpation by the Ghana armed forces, cannot be underestimated yet, the docile over-humanitarian President and the NPP government and party, without political clout and charisma to foresee and forestall impending doom, keep sitting on their laps as if no storm is gathering in the cup. The actions of Rawlings are miles away from the parameters of the rule of law. They do not constitute freedom of speech and expression as some ignorant warped minds do claim but treason, in its highest degree. It is laughable to hear from some quarters that Mr. Rawlings is bold, frank and outspoken, behaving in the obvious most ill-mannered dangerous ways as he does. He is rather being selfish, indirectly pursuing some personal hidden agendas as done in his two previous revolutions, but pretending to be serving the interest of the people. Is he broke in less than five years after embezzling so much and therefore needs to replenish his coffers through the usual coup, whipping up sentiments against the government?

The inaction of the government in dealing decisively with Rawlings for fear of the appropriate action manifesting in civil uprising is even more dangerous than having him drastically dealt with. It encourages every Tom, Dick and Harry to emulate the reprehensible attitude of Rawlings with impunity, which in the end will be regrettable for the entire nation. Should he not stage a coup himself, he is not only encouraging but directly inviting others to do it. The government believe in the act being committed before taking action. What an illogical reasoning." Prevention they say, is better than cure" and "a stitch in time saves nine" What about "had I known is always at last?" When he commits the act, having taken the reins of government, chasing people in the deposed government to kill, suspending the Constitution, on what legs do we then stand to deal with him? It would be too late to prosecute him. Now is the hour to do him the honourable duty and favour putting him in place and his right senses, arresting and prosecuting him like what exactly would happen to anyone else, if they had done all that he is doing? Democracy, rule of law and human rights laws do not offer us unlimited liberty and freedom to act anyhow. .Presently in Britain, one cannot discuss ones views freely on terrorism as the least erring on the wrong side, favouring it, leads to ones arrest, imprisonment and if a stranger, then your repatriation to your home country regardless. In the George Bush's USA of today, playing hoax about bombs and or terrorism, leads to your arrest and imprisonment. Are these not the two most powerful democratic countries in the world? Are Rawlings' daily actions towards the government and the nation not very similar? These are preventive acts done to protect the people, ensure the stability and the integrity of their countries. Why not in Ghana, where one person's actions are able to hold us incapacitated? Rawlings has done it twice so please don't let it happen for the third time. The President of the Republic should please have lectures in politics on "open and close democracy" to better read his political directional bearings and then govern properly but not blindly lost in the democratic political arena as it now seems.

The government should not be deceived into thinking that detailing Secret Security Officers to monitor him will do the trick. It won't. How do you get to know who might have been given the hope and expectation to stage a coup, by the deplorable acts of Rawlings, let alone monitoring them? The Military Police did same to Kojo Tsikata at Limann's time. When Rawlings took over power as usual coup maker, appointing Kojo as his National security advisor, Kojo did not only dismantle but nearly wiped out physically all the Military Police personnel in what was a revenge for shadowing him, though they acted on the orders of the then government. Does history serve any lesson to the NPP? I hope not!

On the economic front, it is wrong for the government to desire to entrust the totality of the creation of jobs and investment in the hands of the private sector, even though such wishful thinking is not yielding the desire goals. They are rather cunningly but covertly pursuing the unhealthy divestiture of State properties' policies initiated by the PNDC/NDC. Even in some advanced countries, the governments hold on to, and finance certain public investment considered indispensably vital for the public. The private investors are cautious investing in a corrupt country like Ghana, where nothing or the least said about the justice system in terms of fairness, speedy dispensation of justice, and the bureaucratic red tapes, the better. How then can jobs be found if the government insist on not creating any job but still leaving them to the private investors? People are crying for jobs so please help. It is dangerous to ignore the people's wants and cries. Dr. Nkrumah on learning about his overthrow, said, "If I knew Ghanaians preferred milk and sugar to investment, I would have provided every home in Ghana with a running tap of milk". If he had understood the people, he would have been in power much longer. Any lesson learnt from this, Mr. President? Deny the people their most aspired dream of the provision of the basic necessities as jobs, affordable food, and your party goes into oblivion for good.

Though distraught with grief at the loss of my mum, the love and concern for my country Ghana spur me on to come out boldly with my views in case they will will be given the appropriate ears. It is always in the general interest of Ghana and Ghanaians that I write though others may see it differently.



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