General News of Monday, 23 January 2017
The Convention Peoples’ Party (CPP) has called on the Ghana Police Service to deal with politically tainted crime to restore the sanctity of the democratic dispensation.
“We must immediately depoliticise crime and deal with all breaches of the law without fear or favour.
“All those illegal takeovers of government properties, forceful eviction of public servants from their lawful state bungalows due to their purported association with the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, seizer of tollbooths and toilets, dents our democratic credentials.
“The police must immediately arrest and prosecute the culprits…these elements are not working in the interest of the state, democratic change of government is not a coup d’état”, Professor Edmund N. Delle, the CPP Chairman told the Ghana News Agency in an interview in Accra last Wednesday.
Speaking on recent warlike annexation of state properties by elements purported to be associated with the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Prof. Delle said: “Democratically transfer of power from a defeated government to opposition party, which won an election, is not a military invasion of seat of government, it is peaceful transfer of power.
“We are, therefore, under obligation to continue to engage and work in the interest of the state. We must not plant seeds of fear in outgoing presidents and government functionaries that when they are out of power they will be harassed unduly and disgraced in public. That will amount to preparing the grounds for a defeated government to refuse to hand over power in the near future in Ghana.
“On the other hand, any person in government now or previous must understand the need to judiciously use state power vested in him or her through the will of the people. Those who trespass the laws must be dealt with thoroughly through legal means…we are a country built on the principles of the rule of law, freedom and justice…”
The CPP Chairman, therefore, condemned the recent takeovers, stressing that the possibility of criminal elements within society taking advantage of the transitional process to steal and loot public property could not be ruled out while other elements might want to take political advantage of the environment to “teach their political opponents some lessons and exhibition of power”.
Prof. Delle, who is the leader of the CPP, also tasked the media to stop painting crime with political colours; “the media quickly jumped to link people with political parties and influential people, a situation which created enforcement challenge to the Police Administration.”
“If the media removes the political robe they most often dress people with, the law enforcement bodies would have the courage to deal with crime professionally without looking behind whether a political super power or a big man/woman is coming to interfere”.
The CPP Chairman also called on the leadership of the NPP and the NDC to restrain their members and send strong signal to all, especially the foot soldiers that “leadership of the parties will not protect those indulging in illegality and criminal activities whether for the party or not”.
He said political party executives – from the polling station level through to the national leadership, must exhibit a high sense of leadership, direct affairs in the various parties and condemn unpatriotic behaviour of their supporters.
Prof. Delle noted that the new government needed the goodwill of all Ghanaians both home and abroad irrespective of their political, religious, ethnic affiliation, or status in society to govern effectively for accelerated development.
“We must, therefore, reduce political antagonism, character assassination and media prosecution and conviction…governance is not propaganda but serious business and the new government need conducive socio-economic environment to deliver on its campaign promises,” Prof. Delle noted.