Posted: Monday 26th May 2014 at 2:30 am

A Case for Gun Ownership Protection in Ghana

All of a sudden there appears a need to control gun ownership in Ghana. Why? Could it be that the NDC government’s plan to Lord it over the rest of us and maintain its illegal hold on power is threatened only by individual gun ownership in the country? Or do they fear Ghanaians turning their guns on them as a last resort if they cannot remove them from power?

Yesterday the National Commission on Small Arms and Light Weapons posited that “suspects found guilty of owning an unregistered gun or a light weapon could soon be handed life sentences.” Just yesterday I was pulled over at Achimota and the police officer searched my car for weapons without a warrant. For 57 years since independence, there has not been the need to control gun ownership. What changed now?

This is the first time in our country’s history that Ghanaians feel desperate. They are being told they are in a democracy now and that the decision on the leadership of their country resides with them. But on two occasions, the clear public sentiments and preference have failed to reflect in the declared results by the Electoral Commission. Particularly frustrating is the fact that even the Supreme Court was cajoled into sanctioning what was clearly proven to be a sham election.

After the sham elections, the government has grown more and more insensitive to the needs of Ghanaians. Fuel prices, taxes, tolls, fees, and a host of other things that Ghanaians pay have all skyrocketed while incomes have fallen. Jobs have dwindled, and the value of their beloved currency, the cedi, has plummeted.

Yet every pronouncement by officials from the president to Tweeaa DCEs is made with arrogance and insults signifying a government that simply does not care about the needs of the people. To compound that arrogance, these same officials boast about how assured they are about their victory come 2016. If this is not oppression, then the Pope is not Catholic.

The only thing Ghanaians now have to protect themselves against tyranny both by Ghana’s illegal government and armed robbers is defensive ammunition. Gun ownership by people with no criminal records should be protected rather than suppressed. Contrary to mythical fears in Ghana that our peace will be disturbed by individual gun ownership, the evidence supports the opposite.

The doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD), supported by Nash Equilibrium states that once both sides (in this case, government versus citizens, or armed robbers versus citizens) are armed, neither side has any incentive to initiate or visit conflict on the other. It works in adversarial relationships such as what is developing between the Ghana government and Ghanaians.

Our Coat of Arms proudly touts the inscription “Freedom and Justice.” In Ghana today justice is gone. The Judicial system has been corrupted all the way to the top. The only thing Ghanaians have left is their freedom, which includes freedom to defend themselves. Every attempt to take that away must be thoroughly resisted.

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