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13.04.2005 Press Review

EDITORIAL: The Coup Alert

By Accra Daily Mail

We (Accra Daily Mail) do not enjoy writing about unpleasant stories. We are as pained as any patriotic Ghanaian when we have to sound certain forms of alarm like coup d'etats. We have also never shied away from promoting our compatriots to the dangers people like Jerry Rawlings, the NDC leader posed to Ghana. Some people say he is mad. Others say he is a spent force. His followers believe that he is on a messianic mission. Whatever he is, he is the embodiment of a kind of problem, which other countries have had the misfortune of experiencing in history.

There is no need to belabour the details here but suffice it to say that we all know how Jerry Rawlings came to power and for how long he clung to that power. We will be exhibiting not only irresponsible naiveté but also criminal negligence if we downplay his intentions towards our democracy. We have often argued that it is not because we think that he is a superman, but because we understand what his type represents: Megalomania and its attendant dangers.

His attacks on the Kufuor administration in South Africa was not simply the reveries of an individual exercising his freedom of expression, but the clear threat from a dangerous individual who had plans to strike against the government of his country through an armed insurrection or coup d'etat. And we must remember that he has followers who will help light the power keg. We are afraid, but Ghanaians are playing with evil forces here and if care is not taken by our security and intelligence agencies with a lot of help from our civil society groups, Rawlings WOULD stage another coup. Ignore his disclaimers – he does not mean any of them.

The Christian Church leaders last week took a very positive decision when they registered their displeasure at the way Rawlings has been heaping disgrace on our honour and dignity as a nation. Now they have an even bigger task: Resisting Rawlings' coup plans. And here, we cannot leave it to them alone. We wish to appeal to all other identifiable public interest groups – teachers, doctors, chiefs, students, lawyers, business people, etc – to come out and send a clear message that Ghana has no place for coup makers. This is no joking matter. The survival of our nation is what is under threat…

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