The Director, Faculty of Academic Affairs at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC), Professor Emmanuel Kwasi Aning, is worried how political party affiliated vigilante groups, thought to have been disbanded, have managed to infiltrate the state’s security apparatus.
Following the attacks of these operatives on Citi FM’s journalist Caleb Kudah and the Ashanti Regional Security Coordinator DCOP Opare Addo, concerns have been raised on the lawfulness of their modus operandi and the effect of their operations on Ghanaians.
While speaking with the host, Evans Mensah on Joy News’ PM Express, DCOP Opare Addo, the latest victim of these attacks, stated that he had identified 4 out of the 7 security operatives as former members of the Delta Force vigilante group.
Reacting to this, Prof Aning stated that this is the fifth vigilante related incident recorded this year alone.
“What this means is that the optimistic, celebratory talk around the disbandment which the National Peace Council led is nothing but a sham”.
In 2020, following politically related violence at the by-election conducted at the Ayawaso West Wuogon Electoral Area in the Greater Accra Region, Ghanaians made several calls to end political violence perpetrated by party activists known as ‘vigilantes’.
A strategic plan for eliminating vigilantism, titled ‘The Roadmap to Eradicating Political Vigilantism in Ghana’, facilitated by the National Peace Council, was initiated and was agreed to by the country’s two main political parties.
However, it would seem that some members of these groups, described by Prof. Aning as “a law unto themselves”, have found their way into the country’s security apparatus to legalise their unlawful conduct.
“What we are seeing and by specifically mentioning Delta Forces, it is showing you that those who are members of these powerful groups are a law unto themselves, in which the phraseology National Security is only used in an ad hoc manner and in an opportunistic manner to clothe themselves with that authority and power to be able to abuse people’s rights and to undermine the authority of the state,” he said.https://a2d3344a50bf5c467e7529d88f45f933.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html
Because DCOP Opare Addo’s appointment was by the “Presidential commission”, he also believes that the actions of these operatives “challenge the authority of the commander-in-chief of the armed forces.”
He added, “this is dangerous and is getting out of hand” and must not be allowed to continue.