Experts fear Short commission recommendations may not be implemented
Contrary to claims by opposition NDC that the commission of enquiry into the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election violence is compromised, some experts have painted a different picture.
These experts believe the integrity of the Emile Short commission is unquestionable. Where their fears lie is with the will of those who set it up to implement the recommendations.
Col. Festus Aboagye (Rtd), a security consultant and author who spoke on Newsfile on MultiTV/Joy FM Saturday recounted the history of such commissions and the important recommendations they make.
According to him, the Wuaku Commission which investigated the circumstances leading to the assassination of Ya Na in 2002 recommended that all private armies operating outside the auspices of the army/police be disbanded.
He added that if that had been effectively implemented, political vigilante groups would not still be a menace in Ghana today.
In that light, Col Aboagye said, “there is justifiable grounds for the segment of society that doesn’t repose much confidence” in the Emile Short commission.
He added that the composition of the commission itself gives credibility to the process but the government must be ready to implement their recommendations.
Speaking on the same show, the Director of the Faculty of Academic Affairs and Research at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre (KAIPTC), Kwesi Aning expressed similar concerns.
He told host, Samson Lardy Anyenini that nobody can question the integrity of the commission.
“…so I think based on what we know on the four individuals, being able to put the facts on the table should not be the problem,” Dr. Aning said.
He added, “the problem is the will to say we [government] will deal with the recommendations.”
Meanwhile, secretary to the commission, Dr. Ernest Kofi Abotsi has allayed fears that the commission’s work would preclude criminal prosecutions by the police.
He said the police are at liberty to prosecute whoever is related to the violence as long as they do not rely on evidence that that person gave the commission.
Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia swore in the members of the commission on Friday, saying that “I wish you the very best in the inquiry and the nation is grateful.”