Feature Article of Monday, 29 August 2011

Columnist: Mensah, Nana Akyea

Ghana Must Not Rush To Recognize Rebels!

Feature Article, Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro.

Whilst the Ghanaian President Professor John Evans Atta-Mills, could be
counted upon as a voice of democratic Africa, his recognition to the
Alassane Ouattara junta and the role he played in getting the head of the
Constitutional Council, Dr. Paul Yao N'dre to rescind his decision to
declare Alassane Ouattara the winner of the contested elections, went too
far, in my humble estimation, in helping to legitimise an illegitimate
regime and a puppet of imperialism.

So far, the only thing Ghanaians are aware of is that the Ghanaian
government would not rush to make any decision to recognize the rebels in
Libya. It is thus alarming to read from wikipedia that: "On 24 August Gwede
Mantashe, secretary general of South Africa’s ruling African National
Congress, said that Ghana is considering recognition of

I think peace-loving Ghanaians must raise their voices to stop the President
in his track. It must be mentioned however, that we recognize the immense
pressure African governments must be facing in this concerted onslaught by
the former colonialist nations and the US in this grab for recognition for
their darling rebels in Libya.

Unlike Nigeria, the very decision not to recognize Libya before the AU Peace
and Security Meeting on Friday, was in itself, an important victory.
"Nigeria broke with the 53-member African Union to extend recognition 48
hours ahead of a meeting of the union’s high-level panel on Libya. Ghana is
also considering recognition. “Nigeria is jumping the gun in recognising the
rebels as representatives of Libya,” stated Gwede Mantashe, secretary
general of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress." See: Michael
Jansen (24 August 2011). "Contact group to discuss aid to rebel
Irish Times.

President Mills must not bow to international pressure and help carry the
voices of millions of Ghanaians who stand in principled objection to the
role used by the NATO forces to illegally support a rebel army to take
political power in a sovereign African country, and member of the African
Union whose Constitutive Act does not allow the AU, even to recognise
governments that come to power by illegitimate means.

*Attacks On Black Africans*

Meanwhile, reports coming out of Tripoli tell of horrendous massacre of
Black people at the hands of the rebels. I just read an account of what
Black Africans are facing at this very moment in Tripoly, and it disturbs me
a lot that the recognition of these murderous rebels rather seem to be a
priority than the safety and security of our fellow compatriots.

In today, Sunday, 27 August 2011 edition of the Independent,* *
http://www.independent.co.uk/ Kim Sengupta writes in "Rebels settle scores
in Libyan
from Tripoli:

"They were shooting at us and that is the reason they were killed," said
Mushab Abdullah, a 35-year-old rebel fighter from Misrata, pointing at the
bodies. "It had been really tough at Abu Salim, because these mercenaries
know that, without Gaddafi to protect them, they are in big trouble. That is
why they were fighting so hard."

His companion, Mohammed Tariq Muthar, counted them off on the fingers of his
hand: "We have found mercenaries from Chad, Niger, Mali and Ghana, all with
guns. And they took action against us."

But, if the men had been killed in action, why did they have their hands
tied behind their back? "Maybe they were injured, and they had to be brought
to this hospital and the handcuffs were to stop them from attacking. And
then something went wrong," suggested Mr Abdullah."

They must have stabbed themselves in the back seven times! Here is another
"Come and see. These are blacks, Africans, hired by Gaddafi, mercenaries,"
shouted Ahmed Bin Sabri, lifting the tent flap to show the body of one dead
patient, his grey T-shirt stained dark red with blood, the saline pipe
running into his arm black with flies. Why had an injured man receiving
treatment been executed? Mr Sabri, more a camp follower than a fighter,
shrugged. It was seemingly incomprehensible to him that anything wrong had
been done."

The following observation must make anyone contemplating a recognition for
these rebels make a pause and say "Wait a minute, are these not murderous

"It is also the case that the regime has repeatedly unleashed appalling
violence on its own people. But the mounting number of deaths of men from
sub-Saharan Africa at the hands of the rebels – lynchings in many cases –
raises disturbing questions about the opposition administration, the
Transitional National Council (TNC) taking over as Libya's government, and
about Western backing for it.

The atrocities have apparently not been confined to Tripoli: Amnesty
International has reported similar violence in the coastal town of Zawiyah,
much of it against men from sub-Saharan Africa who, it has been claimed,
were migrant workers."
Here is also another extract, as we contemplate their recognition:

"The killings were pitiless.

They had taken place at a makeshift hospital, in a tent marked clearly with
the symbols of the Islamic Crescent. Some of the dead were on stretchers,
attached to intravenous drips. Some were on the back of an ambulance that
had been shot at. A few were on the ground, seemingly attempting to crawl to
safety when the bullets came.

Around 30 men lay decomposing in the heat. Many of them had their hands tied
behind their back, either with plastic handcuffs or ropes. One had a scarf
stuffed into his mouth. Almost all of the victims were black men. Their
bodies had been dumped near the scene of two of the fierce battles between
rebel and regime forces in Tripoli."

*Forward Ever! Backwards Never!!*

*Nana Akyea Mensah, The Odikro*