The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has called off a planned demonstration by its youth wing following President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s condemnation of post-election violence Tuesday.
The NDC in a statement released Wednesday charged the President to disband the governing New Patriotic Party’s Invincible Forces to give credence to his call for peace.
“We intend to view this belated call by president Nana as a genuine effort on his part to rein-in the rampaging and marauding members of his party and it is our expectation that his gesture will restore the peace Ghanaians enjoyed under the NDC,” the statement read.
Delivering his first State of the Nation Address, President Akufo-Addo was strong in his condemnation of violence that erupted after the December 7, 2016 presidential elections.
“Certain incidents occurred during the transition period that are matters of concern to me, and should be to every Ghanaian, as they marred an otherwise dignified and successful transition.
Wrongdoing has no political colour, and I do not subscribe to the lawlessness of political party supporters simply because their party has been elected into office,” he said.
He said he instructed former Inspector General of Police (IGP), John Kudalor when the incidents erupted to apply the law regardless of the political affiliation of the suspects involved.
“This instruction was also carried on to his successor, David Asante Appeatu. Both of them acted upon it, which helped to bring the situation under control.”
Although the NDC functionaries welcomed the call by the President, they believe he could have condemned the events when they begun rather than a belated action.
“In our last two press conferences, we had cause to demand from Nana Akufo-Addo; a swift call to stop his lawless Invisible Forces from engaging in their beastly and barbaric acts.
Our calls went unheeded and the brigandry of the Invisible Forces resulted in injuries, destruction of property, and the loss of precious lives,” the statement said.
Nonetheless, the “This call, though belated, is welcome news for the NDC and indeed all peace-loving Ghanaians.”
Read full Press Release
President’s Assurance Of NPP Post-Election Violence Cessation
The National Democratic Congress notes with a lot of hesitant interest that President Nana Akufo-Addo in his maiden State of the Nation Address, eventually called on the lawless rampaging members of his party to stop all acts of violence and brigandry that they have been consciously unleashing on innocent citizens, especially members or perceived supporters of the NDC, with the tacit support and goading-on of the Acting National Chairman of the NPP, Mr. Freddie Blay, as well as other leading members of the Party.
This call, though belated, is welcome news for the NDC and indeed all peace-loving Ghanaians.
In our last two press conferences, we had cause to demand from Nana Akufo-Addo; a swift call to stop his lawless Invisible Forces from engaging in their beastly and barbaric acts.
Our calls went unheeded and the brigandry of the Invisible Forces resulted in injuries, destruction of property, and the loss of precious lives.
The inability of the security forces to protect lives and property compelled us to ask our members to employ the first law of nature, which is, self-defense: as the only way of fending off the fiendish attacks of the Nana Akufo-Addo’s Invisible Forces.
In as much as our call to our supporters could have escalated the violence, that was the only option available to us.
We intend to view this belated call by president Nana as a genuine effort on his part to rein-in the rampaging and marauding members of his party and it is our expectation that his gesture will restore the peace Ghanaians enjoyed under the NDC.
It is our hope that the President is not only paying lip service to his call for the IGP, Asante-Apeatu and his men to crack the whip and deal mercilessly with all forms of lawlessness.
In this regard, we wish to request the President to disband and demobilise his illegal vigilante group, the Invincible Forces with immediate effect.
On our part, we are calling off the planned demonstration of our Youth Wing against NPP violence scheduled for February 24, as a sign of good faith.
We believe in peaceful coexistence and we see the President’s call as an important precondition for peace in Ghana. We therefore urge him to walk the talk.
Johnson Asiedu Nketia
(NDC, General Secretary)
February 22, 2017.