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A leading member of OccupyGhana Ace Anan Ankomah has opened up about the reasons that compelled some of its founding members to break away to form a different group, Citizen Ghana Movement.
According to the renowned lawyer, philosophical difference and disagreement on the approach to adopt in operating as a group pushed some of its members away.
He explained that the idea to form Occupy Ghana was motivated by the desire to keep up the momentum after the Occupy Flagstaff House demonstration organised by Nana Kwasi Awuah-led Concerned Citizens for Responsible Governance.
This he noted meant that members who felt uncomfortable with the approach or didn’t agree with the approach had the liberty to form a group that represents their interests and philosophy.
“You must remember that nobody went out to set up an organisation called OccupyGhana. We met at an event organised by another group. The Occupy Flagstaff House day was not called OccupyGhana, it was Occupy Flagstaff House, organised by a group called Concerned Citizens for Responsible Governance.
We all met there, then after that, a few of us who met there said we need to sustain this momentum so we formed a back office group that was supporting the people who started that work. Along the line, it crystallised and became OccupyGhana. So OccupyGhana itself was formed about three months after the event, it wasn’t immediate” he recounted.
Ace Ankomah clarified that “you can understand that for a people who were thrown together by an event, our understanding of how to proceed will differ. We can do all things but I think that at some point some people need more expression.
There are people who are activists per their various ways of being activists and so for me it was a philosophical difference as to the mode of operation. And at the end of the day, it is important that we allow everyone the opportunity to express himself or herself in the way the person considers best.
I didn’t want for example my view of pushing the Ghana agenda to limit somebody’s view and I didn’t want to be limited by somebody’s view. So when the philosophical underpinnings got to a head, it was only fair that [we say] you proceed this way, we proceed that way”.
Is it a break up if we still talk? He quizzed host of ‘21minutes with KKB’, Kwabena Kyenkyenhene Boateng who was conducting the interview.
The OccupyGhana leading member emphasised that the group was very political and open to people of all sides of the political divide but firmly rejected the notion that they were partisan.
Ace Ankoma also discounted the assertion that the CitizenGhana Movement broke away because OccupyGhana was becoming increasingly political.
“Absolutely we are political. The organisation is not partisan and if anybody said that’s what led to it, that’s untrue. Citizen Ghana is political. We are all political, we are dealing with the politics of our nation but speaking for my group, we refuse to be partisan individuals are allowed to be.
Just that if you take a partisan position you lose your position and become a common floor member so those of our members who went into politics, we still kept them because we want to be able to influence decisions” he retorted and admitted that deputy Communications Minister “comes for the common floor member meetings but he won’t attend the directors meeting. He no longer holds the directorship”.
The Managing partner at Bentsil-Enchil, Letsa and Ankomah chambers was convinced that despite the splitting up of the two groups, the impact being made on the governance process by the two groups is positive and noteworthy.
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