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Working document to end political vigilantism in the offing — NPC

BY: Daily Graphic
Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Asante, the Chairman of the National Peace Council
Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Asante, the Chairman of the National Peace Council

The National Peace Council (NPC), with the support of technical experts, will within four weeks, present a working document on a road map for the eradication of political vigilantism.

The road map, which will inculcate the input of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the largest opposition National Democratic Party (NDC) will also take into account, the reports submitted by the various stakeholders at the just-ended dialogue on the eradication of political vigilantism.

This was contained in a communiqué which was jointly signed by Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo and Mr Freddie Blay, the chairmen of the NDC and the NPP respectively, and Nana Dr S.K.B. Asante, a Member of the Peace Council.

It was issued to the Ghana News Agency in Accra last Wednesday at the end of a national dialogue, facilitated by the NPC on Monday, May 27 and Tuesday, May 28, to consider practical ways of eradicating political vigilantism which has generally been condemned as a threat to national security and democracy.

Parties agree

The communiqué said the two parties agreed on the way forward, “Pursuant to their earlier communiqués signed by the parties aimed at disbanding their vigilante groups, prohibiting the utilisation of such groups and cooperating with state agencies and stakeholders to eliminate vigilantism in Ghana”.

In response to a national outcry against the menace, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, in delivering his third State of the Nation Address to Parliament, on Thursday, February 21, 2019, urged the two major parties to dialogue towards finding a permanent solution.

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The Attorney-General on April 11, also laid before Parliament, a Vigilantism Bill and related offences Bill to legislate against violent activities by party militants and land guards.

The communiqué said the draft Code of Conduct designed by the NPC would be considered as one of the deliverables in the preparation of the road map which would be presented to the parties for their consideration upon formulation.

The dialogue was also attended by the representatives of civil society organisations (CSOs), religious organisations and security agencies.

“The dialogue provided an expert overview of the nature, scope and dangers of political vigilantism, as well as the much-needed forum for the stakeholders to present their perspectives on vigilantism and articulate the challenges they face in their attempt to contend with the phenomenon.” — GNA