The National Peace Council says the two main political parties, NPP and NDC have agreed to disband political vigilante groups in the country.
This follows the President's request for the two main parties to meet and find solutions to political vigilantism.
The NDC and NPP today met with the Peace Council as the mediator for the meeting, the chairman of today’s (Tuesday) meeting, Prof. Emmanuel Asante reading a summary of the outcome of today’s dialogue to the media said:
“The National Peace Council met with key members of the two main political parties in Ghana, namely the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in response to a call by the President of the Republic of Ghana Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his state of the nation address to eradicate political vigilantism''.
“After an open and exhaustive deliberation, the parties agreed that vigilantism is inimical to Ghana’s democratic system and must be eradicated.
“With respect to the immediate focus of the mediation or dialogue, the NDC is of the view that it should be the eradication of ‘political vigilantism in all its ramifications’ while the NPP is of the opinion that the focus should be ‘political party vigilantism in all its ramifications’.
“Significantly though, both parties agree to engage in deliberations aimed at:
1. disbanding vigilante groups operating within political parties or for political purposes
2. prohibiting the ownership, hiring, or utilisation of such groups by the political parties or members thereof
3. cooperating with state agencies and stakeholders in the total eradication of such groups or incidents of vigilantism in the country
“It should be noted that the two parties are also committed to exploring other processes in relation to the elimination of vigilantism”.
In an interview with Joy News, the National Chairman of the NPP Freddie Blay said the NPP is very much committed and will ensure that that vigilantism is eradicated
''We thank the panel members for facilitating and moderating this to the extent that the stages were amicable and objective. The signatures to the document show that we are fully committed, I can speak for the NPP which very much committed and we will do anything possible to ensure that there is no violence in our politics, intimidation in our politics. Also concerning the two parties, I think there is evidence of goodwill on both sides, hopefully, that will see to the end of vigilantism in the country''.
The opposition, NDC national chairman, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo said getting rid of vigilante groups should not only be focused political parties but should be extended to the national security outfit
''We believe that vigilantism goes beyond political parties because there are other vigilante groups outside political parties whose work undermine our democratic process. We want an approach in dealing with the issue of political vigilantism once and for all and not a peace meal approach which for us will not solve the problem for the country''.
''We are talking about dealing with vigilantism beyond political parties because vigilantism is being entrenched in the national security agencies and that is why we believe that we shouldn't restrict it only to the political parties otherwise we will miss the point. There are other groups outside the political parties whose activities impede on our political democratic process'',he added.