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Opinions of Saturday, 1 January 2011

Columnist: Atta-Boakye, Ken

Ivorian Crisis – Ineffective ADR!

In the present Ivorian political crisis, I don’t think any form, shape, or size of any military intervention will bring a peaceful solution. Ecowas should kindly stay away from military action. The Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) personalities that met President Ghagbo on Tuesday by the West African sub-region (Ecowas) leadership from Sierra Leone, Cape Verde and Togo was not well positioned to do the mediation. By passing judgment and making their stance publicly known long before they set foot on Ivory Coast they had already compromised their stand. It shouldn’t be a surprise (though not right) that Ghagbo refused to oblige to step down. They don’t need to go back on Monday as they have again publicly stated. History has taught us that West Africa doesn’t need any military intervention if that is still on their mind.

Ghagbo is claiming that he won the election by the provision of another institution that also monitored the elections – The Presidential Commission. I wonder what party the people who served on the Presidential Commission are affiliated with. Quattara is also claiming that he too won the election by the provision of the Electoral Commission that was sponsored by the international respected entities. Ex-President Jimmy Carter and Ex- President Kuffuor were a party to the UN observers in which Ghagbo refused to honor. The bigger question here is why were there two bodies to declare the election results? There should have been only one agreed upon election monitoring committee before the election took place. It is moments and events like these that keep providing the rest of the world with ammunition and reason to always look down upon the continent of Africa. The emphasis now should be on the genocide and the catastrophe that lie ahead. That they (the leaders) are or will be protected shouldn’t be enough reason for innocent souls to be lost.

We fear for the whole of West Africa, especially Ghana (since we share border) and have a lot to lose if rebels decide that Ghana was a party to the on-going quagmire. Not to mention, the recent oil discovery along the shores with Ivory Coast as a target. Even if a neutral ADR is unable to resolve the crisis there should be series of public debates for the masses to understand that the leaders together with their government officials would be protected and the people would suffer the consequences as the cow to be sent to the slaughter houses (war zones). It is not right and should not be accepted. The Ivorian masses have to reason together and act together. Our only hope now should be that Ghagbo will eventually come to his senses and peacefully give up the Presidency (no one besides him no longer recognizes him as the President) or we will be heading for a genocide in another country in Africa.

Ken Atta-Boakye
Woodbridge, Virginia, USA.