‘Mahama Can’t Fight Drug Menace’


Martin Amidu
Former Attorney General (A-G) and Minister of Justice, Martin Alamisi Benz-Kaiser Amidu, has questioned President Mahama’s commitment and ability to fight the trade in narcotics.

In his latest epistle, the ‘Citizen Vigilante’, as he has come to be known and accepted, gave serious pointers which exposed the Mahama administration’s unwillingness to prosecute some of these drug-related cases.

‘Aside from propaganda as we have come to understand the use of the term promise by the President, this NDC Government cannot fulfil the basic requirement of social democracy to ensure the egalitarian wellbeing of its citizens by protecting them against the menace of drug trafficking and consumption,’ he noted in a statement issued in Accra a day after news of the Ghanaian lady arrested at the Heathrow Airport in UK became public.

Mr Amidu said his personal experience has taught him that ‘the NDC 3 and 4 governments (under the late President Mills and incumbent President Mahama) have a penchant not to take drug trafficking and the prosecution of other serious crimes seriously, particularly when the culprits are perceived to be associates of the government,’ he explained.

‘But when one is perceived to be an opponent of the government or a sacrificial lamb is needed,’ he indicated, ‘exhibitions in the nature of high profile trials are mounted to pull wool over the face of the ordinary Ghanaian.’

Justification
Key among the several instances he cited was the case involving Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Gifty Mawuenyega Tehoda, who was re-arrested the day she was granted bail over the missing cocaine at the police headquarters.

This, according to Mr Amidu, was in spite of the advice given by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) that the evidence was insufficient to ground a charge.

He stated, ‘I personally spoke to the Police Administration and warned against the illegality of re-arresting her but to consider the option of confining her to barracks in accordance with Police Regulations.’

The Citizen Vigilante indicated that instead, ‘she was shamefully apparently permitted to be re-arrested by another security organisation to side step my advice’, insisting that ‘her eventual acquittal vindicated the position the DPP and I took at the time that the evidence on the docket against her could not sustain a conviction.’

‘She nonetheless had been made a good scapegoat for the Government,’ he noted.

Meanwhile, the former Attorney General stated that ‘the real culprits in the missing cocaine saga have still not been found and dealt with in spite of investigations conducted by the Police and the Judicial Service.’ He wondered whether ‘John Mahama’s government has killed this case too or is it sheer incompetence in governance?’

According to him, ‘this is the smoke screen behind which the John Mahama NDC Government promises or makes its propaganda to fight drug trafficking and other serious transnational organised crimes in Ghana and the ECOWAS.’

Lip Services
He recalled a recent news report on August 21, 2014 in which President Mahama was quoted to have promised to use his chairmanship of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to stem the menace of drug trafficking in the sub-region, when members of the West African Commission on Drugs (WACD) called on him at the Flagstaff House.

For him, ‘this cannot be achieved by propaganda in the nature of promises which are glaringly against the facts and experience even in Ghana let alone the ECOWAS.’

Aside that, he said ‘President John Mahama as Vice President, and as the President of Ghana, has been unable to ‘stem the menace of drug trafficking’ within the small territorial boundaries of Ghana, wondering what he and his government can do to stem the tide.

These commissions or omissions of the government, he said, ‘question its sincerity in fighting the menace of drug trafficking even in Ghana not to speak of the whole of ECOWAS.’

Instead, Mr Amidu said ‘the solution to the NDC Government’s deficit with the truth is for the National Democratic Congress to assert its social democratic ideals and compel the NDC Government to toe the party ideals and values and not vice versa. Therein lies the salvation of the NDC as a political party of the future.’

Conviction
The good citizen, he said, ‘must be one who does not allow an elected Government, even if it be of his political party of choice, to take his nation for an avoidable experimentation that would affect good democratic governance and good human capital development through commission or omission or sheer incompetence.’

The former Attorney General and Minister of Justice noted that for Ghana to be able to fight the menace of drug trafficking, she would need a patriotic and visionary leadership, since in his own words ‘no leadership can fight against drug trafficking when it closes its eye to abuse of the law enforcement regime of trafficking in psychotropic and narcotic substances, particularly cocaine and heroin which transit or are imported into this country.’

 By Charles Takyi-Boadu
 

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