Provide security for all Ghanaians, not only to MPs – Rasheed Draman
Dr. Rasheed Draman, Executive Director for the African Centre for Parliamentary Affairs, has asked Parliament to ensure that the security agencies in the country are well resourced to provide the needed security for all Ghanaians and others residing in the country.
He said security must not only be provided to lawmakers, but rather to all Ghanaians.
His comments come on the heels of the renewed calls by the leadership of Ghana’s parliament for MPs to be given police protection at their homes.
The MPs’ call comes after Nyiaeso lawmaker, Kennedy Kankam, and his family was attacked at gunpoint in his house for three hours last Sunday.
According to Police, three gunmen made away with some items from the legislator’s house including a 4-wheel drive vehicle.
The unidentified assailants reportedly scaled a wall into the main yard of the MP’s residence and used a metal cutter to gain access to the bedroom of the legislator.
In 2016, Abuakwa North MP, Joseph Boakye Danquah Adu, was stabbed to death at his Shiashie residence in Accra in a similar fashion.
Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu said on Wednesday, November 6 that the attacks on MPs have left other members worried and feeling insecure.
“If we must be candid with ourselves, so many districts have been created and appropriately so, MMDCEs are provided with security, why can’t we do the same for Members of Parliament.
“I think going forward, the country should make a determined effort…being very decisive about this, because we cannot continue to imperil the lives of MPs,” he lamented.
“I think the time has come for the state to take a decision on the security of Members of Parliament. The situation is getting worse so I will urge with a humble plea for the Interior Minister…that indeed a decision has to be taken on the way forward about the security of Members of Parliament.”
But speaking in an interview with Martin Asiedu-Dartey, sit-in-host of the Sunrise show on 3FM on Thursday, November 7, Dr. Draman said good security must not only be limited to a specific group of people in the country at the expense of others.
He said: “Just on Sunday a Member of Parliament in Burkina Faso was killed, Members of Parliament from Burkina Faso are visiting our parliament to learn from our experience on many other things.
“They have been here when the news broke that their colleague had been killed by terrorists. The conversation they have been having here is that this is really coming home and that they need to put in place measures that will guarantee the security of everyone otherwise none of them is safe.”
He added: “So for me, I will like to be inspired by what happens in other advanced democracies. If you go to the Scandinavian countries, to Sweden for instance Members of Parliament live in ordinary places where every citizen lives. Members of Parliament take the train like everyone. Members of Parliament take the buses like everyone and the whole idea is that they are supposed to represent the people so lets us be part of everyday problems so that if there is anything that needs to be solved at least we appreciate it and then we can work towards solving it.
“MPs are supposed to be representing all of us and if you begin putting security barriers, then it makes representation much more problematic.
“I think that they (Ghanaian MPs) have a bigger platform, they have the power under the constitution, I think they should get our security agencies to do their work and provide all the necessary tools that they need to do their work so that all of us will be secured and our security as a nation will be guaranteed.”