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Opinions of Sunday, 24 December 2017

Columnist: Isaac Kyei Andoh

Ban demonstrations on issues abroad in Ghana

In a little over a week ago, Bernard Mornah, Chairman of PNC and Irbad Ibrahim, the young man we have been made to believe is an expert in Security were thwarted from organising a rally to voice out concerns about the Togo crisis by Ghana Police Service.

The name of the group formed for this demonstration was Ghana Togo Solidarity Movement.

From their account, the police behaved in an unprofessional manner in spite of giving them the leeway to do the rally at Kawukudi Park and that should be condemned.

Just a couple of days ago, Ras Mubarak, Member of Parliament for Kumbungu Constituency alongside Ibrahim and others held a demonstration in solidarity with the Palestinians on United States’ decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

What is happening is that all these so-called solidarity rallies and demonstrations on issues involving other nations are exposing us to security threats and infractions on our diplomatic relationships with the said countries.

The worst part is, most of these phantom groups usually bears the name of Ghana as a corporate body in spite of the fact that they are always sanctioned by individuals who don’t represent Ghana in anyway. Most of the people who go the extra mile to do demonstrations in the country in relation to matters in other countries are people sometimes paid by factions to the issues to use our peaceful nation to do their bidding.

We cannot look on for people to use something each of us represents to advance their interest and subject all of us to danger in the long-term.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one issue that common sense should teach every nation to be cautious about making their stance known publicly.

Irbad Ibrahim should know this if he is not just a google security expert. Ras Mubarak, for a Member of Parliament who needs to focus on advancing the interest of people in parliament and develop Ghana at large, he should never be allowed to be involved in these campaigns because the nation cannot give him the platform to be doing the bidding of other nations.

For the most part of the week to the said demonstration, he went to parliament dressed like a Yasser Arafat.

What authority does Bernard Mornah and Irbad Ibrahim have to use the name Ghana to pursue their individual interest?

If a stop is not put to these demonstrations, a few Ghanaians will be making enemies for us at home and our compatriots in the said countries.

This is one reason why I am very uncomfortable with the decision of government to vote against Israel instead if recusing Ghana from the whole process due to our diplomatic relations with the countries involved.

In the 21 Century, it is so easy to make enemies without knowing and therefore this is never the time to take advantage of globalisation and interfere in the affairs of other sovereign nations.

If the need be and our input can resolve issues, it should be handled by the people mandated to represent our interest in such matters.

Demonstrations in Ghana won’t solve problems in other countries but rather make enemies for us.

Even though I disagree with government decision to vote against the US and Israel, in the same way, I’d have questioned their decision if they voted in favour of them, it better to handles these things at that level than to see individuals trying to make names for themselves at potentially our collective peril.

That said Ras Mubarak and Irbad Ibrahim have no right or let me say should never have been given the right to do what they did.

Recently, when it was revealed that the rights of blacks were being trampled upon in a burgeoning slave business in Lybia, none of these people thought it wise to demonstrate in solidarity with our compatriots in the North African country.

This was an issue that was in Africa with the lives of many Ghanaians at risk but they chose to ignore it because possibly, no one gave them that contract.

Ghana should never be a place for international political vigilantism

We have always been a humble nation that stays away from murky international issues that call for factional alignment. This is why we are friends of our friend’s enemies.

When two friends have issues, it is not so smart for the third party to take sides.

Forming solidarity movements to advance the interest of one nation over the other endangers all of us and therefore the state should guard against.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is largely fuel by religious differences: this is why Ghana, a country that has Christians and Muslims living together peacefully should be tactful in our role and how we react to such things.

Clearly, those who took party were influenced partly by religion, it is not coincidental that the conveners are Muslims. What if Christians in Ghana who were clearly behind the US and Israel decided to do same to back Israel?

We need to tread cautiously, we are becoming too loud globally.