“The initiative has been shown but I think that the structure he is suggesting won’t work. Just to tell NPP to invite your brothers NDC to come and sit and see how you can ban vigilantes is too simplistic,” says former President John Mahama.
The former President was reacting to a call from President Akufo-Addo to the two major political parties to disband vigilante groups linked to them.
President Akufo-Addo, in his third state of the nation address (SoNA), told parliament on Thursday, 21 February 2019 asked the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) to chart a path to bring an end to political violence mostly caused by vigilante groups. If not, he would apply legislation to disband them himself.
“I want to make a sincere passionate appeal to the leaders of the two main political parties in our country – NPP and NDC – to come together as soon as possible, preferably next week, to agree on appropriate measures to bring an end to this worrying and unacceptable phenomenon of vigilantism in our body politic,” he said.
However, Ex-President John Mahama speaking on Accra-based Radio Gold, Friday morning says “the two parties alone can’t deal with this issue. The vigilantes are embedded in the Security Services and so if you said we should disband it, it must involve other stakeholders. It will take other stakeholders like the Peace Council to disband this. NPP and NDC alone can’t dissolve it. We should find a way of delisting them from the National Security.”
He has asked President Akufo-Addo to “take the initiative” because “it was the introduction of Akufo-Addo’s Bolga Bull Dogs among others that brought about the vigilantism”.