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Don’t Blame Politicians, Blame Yourselves, Blame the Law

botchway February 25, 2019

The recent violence and disturbances in Ayawaso West Wuogon has got some people out of their nests, and they have come out blaming politicians for the weakness of the security structure in this country.
The other day, some gentleman appeared on social media angrily insulting and blaming politicians and, to a larger extent, attacking the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the kind of security structure which is operating in this country. Unfortunately, his name did not appear on screen in that TV 3 studio, other than that I would have addressed him directly.
These are the kind of people who would take advantage of a national problem, select a group of people, and blame them for it and incite the nation against the system. And when the inevitable happens and the system is overthrown and they assume the leadership role due to their electrifying speeches, they will mess up big and still turn round blaming others. We have living examples
The man on the screen said: “Shame unto politicians” a number of times, and went on to remind the NDC and NPP that without floating voters, none of these two parties will ever win elections. He advised that the floating voters should turn their backs on these two largest parties.
This is where he had boldly failed to understand what he was talking about. Yes, assuming that the floating voters would all vote for the minor parties and the NPP gets 45% with NDC getting 42%, meaning only members of these two parties voted for the party they belong to; the election will be thrown into a run-off. Assuming the 13% who did not vote for either of these two parties decides not to vote in the run-off, the 87% which voted NDC and NPP will now represent 100% at the polls, and the party which gets 50%+ x number of votes will win the presidency. Instead of finding a solution to the problem, he was rather exhibiting his lack of understanding of the electoral system, and calling on the Minority to dump the NDC and the NPP.
His problem was rather all about the constitution, and instead of advocating how best we should address this thorny issue, he was on air promoting himself as the among the next generation of national leaders who can solve all Ghana’s problems and saying shame unto the NDC and NPP.
When the national constitution was being drafted, Rawlings thought it wise to invite more representatives of market women, hairdressers, artisans, etc., than lawyers, and so what should be expected to happen? The Ghana Bar Association was given only one representative on the Assembly, and with that they boycotted.
People like the man who appeared on the TV 3 discussion programme did not advocate for a thorough scrutiny of each chapter of the draft by the people of this country, but agreed for us to go to a quickly organised referendum to decide whether to accept or not to. So we accepted and endorsed it as the Supreme Law, which must be upheld by all, especially politicians. And if politicians are doing such, he is sitting in front of the camera and blaming them.
The inefficiency of the Supreme Law of the land was first experienced by Jerry John Rawlings himself, who, incidentally, the Constitution was tailored measured for. His Vice had provoked him so much so that he feared he would use his authority over the police to overthrow him. So Rawlings had the Constitution amended barely four years into its coming into law.
During the Atta Mills administration, the need to amend the Constitution came up so strongly that he put in place a commission to collect views in order to amend it.
The question is where was that panellist on TV 3 to submit his views and call for the amendment of sections of the Constitution, especially, those he was crying about? It is a great shame to have such an opportunity go by, and yet come around and blame others who are just applying the law.
I agree with people that the Constitution must be amended, and I have always advocated that we draft a whole new Constitution, since this one has hardly solved problems for us, but rather created more.
And so it is Ghanaians, as a whole, who should be blamed for the lapses and not only politicians. In fact, politicians must be pardoned here, because, for instance, if the President decides to do something which the Constitution frowns upon, even if it will benefit society, he could be impeached.
Today, people are talking about the need to have the Inspector General of Police (IGP) put into office through a method other than to be appointed by the President. This, they say, will guarantee his/her independence. Good idea, but immediately the President goes on air to retire the current IGP and ask the police administration to appoint another into office, he could be impeached.
So, until we fully amend the Constitution or draft a completely new one, we will continue to have this one hanging on our necks. And to those who think they know, but do not know what the legality of the matter is all about, should stop blaming politicians and rather blame themselves for misleading the people.
Hon. Daniel Dugan

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