A Kumasi-based pressure group, Movement for Change (MFC), has charged President John Mahama to sack the Interior Minister, Mark Woyongo, over his remark that ”violence begets violence.”
In justifying the atrocious acts of violence initiated by the Azorka Boys in the just-ended Talensi by-election, the minister is said to have told a Kumasi-based radio station, Ultimate Fm, that the thuggery meted out by the Azorka militia on some New Patriotic Party (NPP) stalwarts was not without provocation.
In a statement jointly signed by its chairman, Dr. Anthony Nsiah Asare; head of operations, Odeneho Kwaku Appiah; Justin Koduah Frimpong; head of communication, Nana Boakye and head of research, Moro Kabore, the MFC described Mr. Woyongo’s remark as reckless and offensive to his office as minister of the interior who had sworn the oath of allegiance to protect the lives and properties of Ghanaians.
”It was therefore no coincidence that the police, a state institution under Mr Woyongo’s ministry, looked unconcerned as the Azorka boys sprayed gunshot bullets and initiated pandemonium during yesterday’s [referring to Tuesday’s] by-election in Talensi without any arrest,” the group noted.
This is the latest in a long chain of offensive remarks by ministers of state under Mr. Mahama’s presidency.
Outraged by unending media probing of the budget for the African Cup of Nations tournament in Equatorial Guinea, the former Minister of Youth and Sports, Mahama Ayariga, chastised Ghanaian journalists and asked them to stop asking ”useless questions. ”
He remains in Mahama’s administration as the current Minister of Science and Environment, to the chagrin of Ghanaian taxpayers.
The pressure group said the latest obnoxious remark by Mark Woyongo could not be taken lightly as it promotes violence that can disturb the peace of the country.
With barely 16 months to the next general elections, the MFC asserted that the nation and its people need a responsible interior minister who would be seen as an embodiment of peace to foster a culture of peace and tranquility in the country.
For the pressure group, a man like Mark Woyongo had displayed his dislike for peace, and that he could not be trusted with a highly sensitive ministry like that of the interior.
The MFC averred that the interior minister’s continual stay in office would undermine the peace and security of the state, and therefore must be shown the exit door to engender confidence in the security services as neutral state institutions working for national interest.
”His continual stay in office will not only threaten the peace and stability of our dear nation Ghana, [but] will also indicate that the president is in approval of Mr. Woyongo’s institutionalization of violence in national politics,” the statement said.
The MFC called on the president to immediately dismiss Mr. Woyongo or the remark would be seen as a state-sanctioned chaos and anarchy by the Mahama-led NDC government towards the 2016 elections.
The group also urged the National Peace Council and civil society groups to take keen interest in this matter and condemn ”these evil utterances,” asking them not to wait for the worse incident to happen.
From Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi
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