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05.03.2019 Feature Article

Why The Call To Ban Political Vigilante Groups Will Not Work.

Why The Call To Ban Political Vigilante Groups Will Not Work.

It is a fact that the incident at Ayawaso West Wagon has intensified the call to ban political vigilantism in this country. From the President of the Republic to media houses, several calls have been made to political parties to put a stop to party vigilantism, a group or an insurgent with the tendency of causing mayhem and curtailing the peace of this nation.

The Justice Emil Short commission of inquiry has made bare some intriguing facts about political vigilantism and ways of ending it. However, it is sad that all the people who have spoken and still speaking about the ban of the group have not been able to tell us who these people are and how they even work.

HOW ALHAJI TALL BECAME A POLITICAL PARTY VIGILANTE

I grew up loving ABC as a political party. No one ever approached me to sell the party to me but I just love the party. I don't care who becomes the flagbearer, all I want is for the party to win election and be said that my party is in power. I don't care whether I'm rewarded or not. In fact I'm a die-hard supporter of the party. I follow the party and its leaders to everywhere they go and I love to support in any way that the party would rely on me. Whether to be called upon to arrange chairs for party activities or directing the movement of people and vehicles, I'm ever ready to support. My love and dedication to the party made the organizer like me and would always want to call on me if there are anything to be done. On election 2013 I was tasked to ensure our party agent is secured and the right needs given him to enable him do his work. This I did so well that the polling station recorded no incident or attempt of confusion or disagreement among the various political parties as compared to previous elections which were mud with ballot-box snatching and fighting. Since then, I have become reliable and serviceable to the party and the party organizer. Anytime the party is having a program I would even be there before my "friend" organizer would call on me. There was a time the party was having an internal election and the organizer thought it wise to brand me and other liable young men with a uniform to make it easy for everyone to identify us. So he gave us a T-shirt with the inscription THE GUARDS. We were directing the movement of people and vehicles, arranging chairs for dignitaries, etc. I supported the party in this regards for a long time, some big men have rewarded me others have not but I have never stopped voting for the party and supporting the party.

From the case above, it can be concluded that getting faithful, reliable, serviceable die-hard individuals in a political party to offer "crazy" support/service to the party is inevitable. This is a pure fact and we ought to accept it. People will do anything for the party they love even if they are not paid or rewarded for it. Like a football team, die-hard supporter will always support their team even when the team is performing poorly and supporters stand no chance of being rewarded. Players are paid huge weekly wages even when they play poor but the supporter would even fight each other for nothing.

Again, from the case above it is clear that political party officials are just a few but the supporters are more. Party organizer alone cannot arrange chairs for party activity, they cannot control the movement of people and vehicles, they cannot provide security for people and properties. They will definitely call on others to support. The likes of Alhaji Tall will be there to support.

Banning people like Alhaji Tall is not possible. Even if political parties agree to do it, they are just going to redress these people with different attire. What should be done is legislating (laws) to contain these party (vigilante/militia groups) people. All political parties should annually file at the police station the number of these people who they would want to be performing security duties for the parties. Basic security training be given to them and annual audit be conducted on them. On election day, parties can send one delegate of their security agent including an official from the Ghana Police to monitor election proceeding.

God Bless Our Home Land Ghana.
[email protected]
Accra.

Radson Abraham
Radson Abraham, © 2019

This author has authored 6 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: RadsonAbraham

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