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Opinions of Saturday, 1 August 2015

Columnist: Adofo, Rockson

Violence Indeed Begets Violence, But…..

Is it not a natural phenomenon for violence to beget violence? Is it not a fact that when a coward is persistently pushed too far to the wall; to a tight corner so to speak, he may one day muster courage to fight back? What have been the causes of revolutions and the numerous instances of violence throughout the world, both in the past and at present? Have, or had, the causes not been the fact that some privileged ones had sought to molest, maltreat or suppress others for a reason or the other?

Perpetration of selective justice begets injustice, and injustice begets violence. When one feels discriminated at, constantly oppressed and denied their rights, what will they do when they come to the conclusion that enough is enough with that nonsense? Again, does poverty not beget hunger, and hunger begets crime? Do we not have the moral justification to first blame whoever caused the hunger before blaming those engaging themselves in crimes because of the hunger? Yes, we do.

If there had never been the natural principle of action and reaction, there would never have been that Mosaic law of "An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth". However, two wrongs do not make a right; retaliating in a like manner may not always be the best method to resolving a serious problem hence Jesus admonishing us to do otherwise.

The Interior Minister Mr Mark Woyongo in his attempts to dissuade Ghanaians from initiating acts of violence to avoid retaliation in like manner however made a cock-up. Instead of being fair and honest in the delivery of his analytical advice, he rather allowed his political affiliation to influence his judgment. He insinuated that the NPP was at fault. They started the violence and in so doing, they had better expect an equal measure of retaliatory response from the NDC, he opined.

What a joke was his response that was eclipsed by the usual NDC propaganda attitude. To point out to him he was totally wrong, biased and presumably not the right person for his post, thus, a misfit, he had better know that it was the "Azorka Boys" from Tamale who either started, or were about to start, the violence, that occurred in Talensi.

Are the "Azorka Boys" not based in Tamale? What did they go to Talensi in the Upper East Region to do during the Talensi by-elections? Did they not go there with the aim of causing violence? Neither the Minister nor anyone can adduce reasons to convince me that the Azorka Boys had gone to Talensi to simply beef up security to ensure the by-election went on peacefully. They had rather gone there to cause trouble to guarantee NDC victory in the by-election and indeed, they achieved their objective.

It was normal that the "Bamba Boys" or the "Invincible or Invisible Forces" would retaliate. Who first started the troubles, Mr Interior Minister? Was it not the "Azorka Boys?" Why then did you make allusion to "All die be die" and "Atiwa" in justifying your "violence begets violence", that although is truism? Why did he not cite the 6th National Congress of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) at Koforidua held at the Hotel EREDEC on Thursday 21 December 2005 where Dr Obed Yao Asamoah and others were threatened by these same "Azorka Boys" gangsters? Did the violent incident not cause the resignation of Dr Obed Yao Asamoah from the NDC party?

What about the most lawless stance taken by then NDC parliamentary aspirant Nii Lamptey Vanderpuye at Odododiodoo Constituency in Accra? Was he not alleged to have ordered his supporters to beat, maim or kill any Akan-name bearing persons who tried to register to vote in that constituency during election 2012? Did his supporters not do exactly that? Were they not causing violence, walking bare-chested with machetes, sticks and other such harmful weapons in hand?

Why would Mr Woyongo not mention them but "All die be die" and "Atiwa?" Did the utterance of "All die be die" ever culminate in any violence in Ghana unlike the callously uncivilized behaviour by Nii Lamptey Vanderpuye? The "All die be die" mantra is simply a reactive statement intended to counter a persistent provocative action by some shameless political bullies.

How did the current NDC National Chairman, Kofi Portuphy, come to possess a loaded AK47 assault rifle with thirty rounds of ammunition in his car when the car was stopped and searched at a roadblock in Talensi? The argument of his Spokesman has been the weapon does not belong to Kofi Portuphy but a government Security agent assigned to protect him. This is news to me. Does the Ghana government assign government security agents to every National Chairman of a political party in the country? If the answer is a no, then why only Kofi Portuphy is assigned one?

Please Mr Woyongo and your NDC party, do not always seek to underestimate the intelligence of all Ghanaians all of the time. That can't be possible.

The NDC were the first to cause problems in Talensi during the by-elections yet, you sought to twist the truth, claiming the NPP started it. Why can't NDC the folk man up and own up, at least for once? Why can't you stop seeing everything through your opaque-tinted political lenses?

Ghana has no future if such is the calibre of leaders we have. Their attitude sucks!

Come again, Mr Woyongo. Even though "Violence begets violence", the way you explained it, apportioning blame to the otherwise innocent party, has rather defeated the objective and the sense in that saying.

Rockson Adofo