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Why Does The Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang Not Sponsor ...

Mon, 1 Feb 2016 Source: Thompson, Kofi

....A Private Member's

Bill For Passage Into A Law Requiring Cattle Farmers In Ghana To Fence

In Their Herds?

By Kofi Thompson

There is no question that most Ghanaians who are aware of it, have had

enough of the criminal activities of the lawless elements amongst

Fulani cattle herdsmen, across the country.

Many of those victimised by Fulani herdsmen want them to be

prosecuted swiftly, jailed and deported from Ghana, after serving

their sentences - if they are not Ghanaian citizens.

Indeed, one doubts very much whether there is any Ghanaian, who does

not empathise with the people of the farming communities, which are

being made to suffer economic losses resulting from the destruction of

farms by grazing cattle herded by Fulanis.

Deputy Commissioner of Police, Nathan Kofi Boakye, the Ashanti

Regional Police Commander, is right in saying that the time has now

come for the nation to take bold action to deal effectively, once and

for all, with lawless Fulani cattle herdsmen.

It is intolerable that farmers in many areas of Asante Akyem, for

instance, should be raped, maimed and murdered with impunity on their

own farms by Fulani herdsmen.

And it does not come as a surprise that most young people in Agogo

and its periphery want Fulani herdsmen to leave with their cattle -

and are threatening to take the law into their own hands to drive them

away if need be.

However, since we are a nation of laws, it is important that in

dealing with the lawless elements amongst Fulani herdsmen, no one is

allowed to resort to unlawful action.

The question is: As a people, what creative means can we use, to

resolve this thorny issue - especially as the possibility exists that

some of them might eventually evolve into terrorists: given the

callous disregard for human life shown by vicious Fulani herdsmen who

commit heinous crimes such as highway robberies?

In our democratic society underpinned by the rule of law, Parliament

holds the key to the resolution of the problem, in my humble view.

It is only Parliament that can pass the needed laws that will force

the wealthy and powerful individuals who outsource the entirety of the

operational side of their cattle-rearing businesses, to Fulani

herdsmen, to take ultimate responsibility for the activities of their

agents and assigns.

Since he is a parliamentarian, why does the Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang,

the MP for Asante Akyem North, not lobby his colleagues in Parliament,

for bipartisan support, for a private member's bill to be passed under

a certificate of urgency, into a law that states unambiguously that

cattle can only be reared and kept within secure fenced-in areas in

Ghana - for which permits have to be first obtained from District

Assemblies - and can be moved from one point to another only in

vehicles, but then only after prior permission for such movement from

one point to another has been obtained from the police?

If the Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang successfully lobbies his colleagues

to enable Parliament pass a private member's bill, sponsored by him,

into a law, he will be exhibiting rare leadership that will enable him

leave a lasting legacy as a responsible politician - which is far

better for him in the long-term than being remembered as a

parliamentarian who was once sought by the police because he was a

rabble-rouser.

Grandstanding to take advantage of public discontent in a volatile

situation, which could ultimately lead to violence and chaos anywhere

in our homeland Ghana, for short-term political gain, really is

despicable. For Mother Ghana's sake we must always condemn politicians

who attempt to do so.

Ghana's global reputation as a haven of peace and stability in West

Africa is a priceless asset, which ought to be guarded jealously, by

all patriotic and well-meaning Ghanaians.

Under no circumstances should Ghanaians allow block-headed and

verbally-aggressive politicians to destroy it - which is why many

independent-minded and patriotic Ghanaians (including little old me)

are so contemptuous of verbally-aggressive politicians like the New

Patriotic Party's Bernard Antwi-Boasiakos and the National Democratic

Congress' Robert Owusus.

With respect, instead of expending his considerable energies engaging

in rabble-rousing, the Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang ought to focus

instead, on getting a law passed by Parliament to enable law

enforcement agencies, and officials of District Assemblies, to end the

atrocities committed by Fulani cattle herdsmen in Agogo and other

areas across our homeland Ghana.

Columnist: Thompson, Kofi

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