The People’s National Convention (PNC) has said activities of political militia are criminal and their members and financiers should be dealt with under the law.
According to the National Chairman of the PNC, Mr Bernard Mornah, it is high time the government put its feet on the ground and ensured the enforcement of laws, adding that once people acted against the law, they must be made to stand prosecution.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, in an interview he asked “Why must National Democratic Congress (NDC) and New Patriotic Party (NPP) go to a meeting to dialogue on what is already wrong.”
He described the ongoing dialogue between the NPP and the NDC to disband political vigilantism in the country as a waste of time and resources.
He said the nation should not waste resources on the ongoing dialogue explaining that the country already had an existing law to deal with the hooliganism which “the NPP and the NDC parties are perpetrating”.
The NPP and NDC are making headway in their dialogue on dealing with politically motivated violence.
The two parties have already agreed on the scope of participation and the modalities on how to disband the groups which carried out the acts of violence on the parties’ behalf.
The talks began almost two months after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo directed them to do so on February 21, in his third State of the Nation Address.
The President’s call followed the violence that erupted during the recent Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.
The violence received a lot of condemnation from many Ghanaians, including civil society groups and organisations, which described the incidents as dangerous and called for a national dialogue to address the issue.
As part of efforts to disband vigilantism, the President also directed the Attorney-General, Ms Gloria Akuffo, to prepare and submit to Parliament specific legislations to deal with the phenomenon of vigilantism in the country and to provide appropriate sanctions.
Few days after, a bill to disband vigilantism was laid before Parliament for consideration and approved under a certificate of urgency.
The PNC Chairman expressed the fear that allowing the two political parties to dialogue on “something that is already criminal will create a dangerous precedent”.
In his opinion, should the NDC and the NPP fade out, the succeeding political parties might repeat exactly what “they are doing today and simply use dialogue to solve criminal matters”.
“This is why I do not believe we need a Vigilantism Bill to act on criminal behaviours that ought to receive outright punishment,” Mr Mornah said.
“This is the only way to halt any future acts of violence that occur during elections,” Mr Mornah added.