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Opinions of Monday, 7 February 2011

Columnist: Donkor, Daniel

Diplomacy At Its Worst!


Right before this government was voted to power, they resulted to a lot of claims and allegations which Ghanaians bought into them which earned them power in 2008.But even after the NDC came to power, the propaganda, unnecessary claims and sometimes empty talks have become their buz-words during radio and tv discussions. Sometimes I ask myself why a group of people that has been voted to power to better the lives of Ghanaians should act as an opposition whose business is it to talk why the incumbent executive walk the talk, that is ACTION.

This is exactly what our current government has done with the Ivorian political crisis. As a graduate of Political Science and as such diplomacy, I know that every nation has its interest first when any international matter arises. In seeking to ensure that ones interest is attained, care must be taken in order not to loose friends and allies and more importantly, create enemies for the country in question. It is therefore prudent to be careful, tactical and strategic. Hence the need to be very careful of public utterrances! What the NDC government has done is the opposite and by so doing created enemies for Ghanaians internationally.

There is a saying in our local parlance that silence is golden and I thought the LAW PROFESSOR will adhere to such tenets especially with respect to Cote D’Ivore because of Ghana’s special interest as a bordering nation whiles he lobbies underground, for some of us to be convinced that he earned some of the accolades that are been showered on him but now he has confirmed our suspicion that those accolades were forced on him. The president may have good intent but executed it poorly and this could have resulted in review of our foreign policy experts and advisors in a serious democracy. The disservice he did to all Ghanaians that fateful 7th January, the day he met the so called SENIOR EDITORS was the attempt to answer the question posed concerning COTE D’IVOIRE. I believe if he had not answered that question Ghana would have been done a lot of good than our current image now. Though I understand the media was very much pressing for Ghana’s position on the crisis, a simple that we support the ECOWAS position was enough to calm nerves and to also give the president 80% and all these insults that the country has received from fellow Africans, courtesy BBC, won’t have occurred.

Let’s be objective hear because this is not NPP or NDC matter. Even if the position of Ghana was that we are not going to provide soldiers to intervene in Cote D’Ivoire when a call is made, the president could have kept it to himself and the top echelon of power and then act so when the time is due instead of putting it before the public.

Though he may not support former president Gbago, the truth is that his claim could give him that needed psychological support that at least he has some level of support from his neighbours, who has a lot of weight in African affairs if not the world as a whole like Ghana. But Outarra may also be suspicious of our president and this may create diplomatic problems for the two countries when he eventually becomes the president. What therefore will the president and his cronies achieved for Ghana by this outburst?

Whiles Gbago still hangs onto power, Ghana will face diplomatic isolation and those who even get close to us will then be skeptical of our intent. Fellow African leaders cannot freely discuss everything with our president because of the perception his outburst has created for him.

Secondly, our citizens in other West African countries will suffer mal-treatment because of a single question that could have been ignored easily.

Thirdly, the stature of Ghana in international politics that has been higher under the two former presidents will be eroded and our presidency will lose its respect. In any case, all the former two presidents either earned a position in AU or ECOWAS and we live to see if this NDC unguided outburst and diplomatic blunder will cost the president such prestigious positions on the African continent, by so doing him enough time to ‘di ni fie asem’(be concerned of his national issues) or not.

When it comes to President-Elect Outarra, the possible situation should he assume office is that the relationship between Cote D’Ivoire and Ghana may be worst. One can imagine two bordering countries that are not on terms, with all the Oil field concerns lingering on. Then the two countries could be sitting on tentahoods as they nurture the fear of each country sponsoring mercenaries into either country.

Please, the truth is that NDC should mature or else they will cost the country a lot. The way a manner they talk about issues of security concern in the country could spell doom for all of us one day. Should they answer any question posed to them directly? Where are the foreign policy advisors of this country and what good are they doing us as a nation. It is not a matter of someone wants peace and another person does not? What a lot of people have not realized or either deliberately sweeping under the cappet or have deliberately failed to tell the president is that his outburst that legitimate force is not the best and that Ghana will not be able to provide soldiers does not make him a peacemaker. Rather, it makes him the opposite as Gbago may feel more secure and will therefore hold on to power whiles innocent people continue to die. Is this how to make peace, for which reason people are calling him king of peace? I believe only shallow minds will ascribe to this.

Again, the NDC outburst reveals great ineptitude of the countries foreign policy set up. It is either they lack the requisite knowledge in diplomacy or does not want to heed to advice.

The continuous attempt to defend this diplomatic blunder to the extent that the apologies of the government want to vindicate the president with AU resolution reveals arrogance, pride and in-sincerity. I think what most groups like the NPP is complaining about is not Ghana’s diplomatic stance but rather the fact that the outburst was unnecessary and tends to do us more harm than good. DIPLOMACY IS NOT DONE IN THE MEDIA.THE PUBLIC IS EVEN NOT INTERESTED IN THE DELIBERATION STAGE BUT RATHER THE OUTCOME !