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21.11.2019 General News

Peace Council Resumes Dialogue On Vigilantism Today

By News Desk
Peace Council Resumes Dialogue On Vigilantism Today

Talks by the National Peace Council on ending political vigilantism between NPP and NDC is expected to resume today Thursday, November 21, 2019 at Peduase.

Today's expanded dialogue will focus on examining the draft roadmap and code of conduct prepared by the Technical Committee as part of steps to tackle the menace.

It will also bring together stakeholders such as the New Patriotic Party (NPP), the National Democratic Congress (NDC), the Ghana Police Service, Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), and the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center among others.

The dialogue was instituted by the National Peace Council following the events that unfolded at the Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency by-election.

Though there were initial disagreements between the NDC and the NPP, both parties say they're committed to ending political vigilantism.

Akufo-Addo signs Vigilantism Act; offenders to be jailed 15 years

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has given his assent to the Vigilantism and Related Offences Act, 2019, which bans acts of vigilantism in the country.

The Act also disbands vigilante groups, including political party vigilante groups and land guards.

According to President Akufo-Addo, “a person who directly or indirectly instigates or solicits the activity of a vigilante, facilitates or encourages vigilantism, or conceals a vigilante to avoid lawful arrest, commits an offence, and is liable, on conviction, to a term of imprisonment of not less than ten (10) years and not more than fifteen (15) years.”

Let's boldly deal with vigilantism to avert violence in 2020 – Asantehene

The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II had warned of imminent political disturbances in the 2020 general elections if existing laws are not enforced to deal with vigilantism and other related crimes.

He has therefore admonished national leaders to boldly to speak against issues that could destroy the peace and stability of the country.

“Is it not possible to identify those who caused the disturbances during the Ayawaso Wuogon by-elections or those who engaged in the shooting at the NDC party's office? We are all in this country and those people also live with us, so why can we talk the truth on those matters too? Even with all these, we still say we are making laws. Is there not already existing law in the criminal code that if someone should either shoot another person with a gun or use a machete on another they are arrested and taken to court? If we are discussing such issues, we need to approach them with the truth.