Voices of Ghanaian activists matter – Prof Kwesi Aning on US report

Kwesi Aning  Prof Kwesi Aning

Thu, 28 Apr 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

US Department of State publishes human rights report

The report talks about corruption, lack of transparency in government

Prof Aning argues this is a rehash of what activists have been saying

Professor Kwesi Aning, Director of the Faculty of Academic Affairs and Research, Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre (KAIPTC), cannot comprehend the seriousness given to the United States’ report on human rights standards in Ghana as against that given to the voice of activists in the country.

Describing the report as a rehash of concerns raised over the years by local activists, Prof Aning indicated that the US human rights report should not be treated as a novelty.

Speaking on JoyNews PM Express, Wednesday, April 27, Prof Aning noted that he was disappointed that it has taken the US State Department’s report for such issues to become prominent among Ghanaians.

He said, this implies that the works of the various activists in the country are not appreciated.

“But we’ve raised these concerns before that of the United States so, what is the big deal here? Every single example cited in this report. And therein lays my disappointment with the way this report is being handled.

“People have raised their voices about the way the judiciary works, about corruption, about police brutality, about the use of weapons and firearms in situations where they ought not to use, so are we saying that when Ghanaian activists raise their voices and point to the gap and weaknesses in our politics it is not important until Uncle Sam and his agents have written?" he quizzed.

Prof Kwesi Aning further questioned, “is that what we are saying? That when activists and those who are fighting for rule of law, the respect of human rights, accountability, transparency in the way our financial resources are used, that those voices and those struggles don’t matter?”

He urged Ghanaians that some keen attention must be paid to activists in the country who have dedicated their time and energy to exposing rot and corruption in the various spheres of the country.

“My argument is that they do matter, and that we need to place more emphasis on internal struggle and make this external reportage ancillary to what is happening here; because no one is going to bring improvement or changes apart from the people of Ghana themselves.

“And I think we need to recognize those who are placing their lives on the line, those who are being brutalized for whatever reason and recognize those struggles,” Prof Aning explained.

2021 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices released by the United States Department of State.

The report highlight issues including; denial of a fair public trial, corruption and lack of transparency in government, arbitrary deprivation of life and other unlawful or politically motivated killings.

The others are freedom of expression, including for members of the press and other media and elections and political participation.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com