At a time when well meaning Ghanaians and Civil Society groups are lambasting the NPP Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin North, Hon Kennedy Agyapong over his hate comments believed to bother on genocide, his party, the New Patriotic Party in a subtle manner; seems to justify the act.
From civil society organizations, to politicians and religious leaders, Ghanaians were unanimous in their condemnation of the incendiary and warmongering speech of the NPP MP.
The MP for Assin North Kennedy Agyapong was arrested and charged Monday over comments he made last Friday on his radio station OMAN FM inciting his party supporters to take up arms against some ethnic groups and the state.
He is said to have declared war on Ewes and Gas over fallouts in the ongoing biometric registration exercise.

But his Counsel, Atta Akyea says his client meant no harm. Atta Akyea told Joy News’ Evans Mensah that his client was only “metaphorical” with his words and has no bad intentions.
However, on Tuesday, Mr. Kojo Asante, a Senior Research Officer at the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) condemned the alleged treasonable comments made by Assin North NPP MP Kennedy Agyapong.
“Yesterday was quite sad for me listening to Mr. Kennedy Agyepong and that tape, and I think it has to be condemned with really no reservation,” Mr Asante remarked.

He further stated that even the tone of Ken’s comments was distasteful and urged those who have sought to rationalize it to desist from such acts. He told Joy FM’s Super Morning Show host.
Others who downrightly condemn the statement by the Assin North MP include; Security Analyst, Emmanuel Bombande, Legal practitioner at the Legal Resources Centre, Abraham Amaleba and elder statesman and former diplomat Mr. K.B Asante
The rest include Mr. Akoto Ampaw, a human rights activist and a member of the National Media Commission, NPP Member of Parliament for Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa, Hon. PC Appiah Ofori and the Managing Editor of the “Insight” Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr.
Political Parties, TUC, Ga Council and civil societies were not left out in the Condemnation of Kennedy Agyepon’s.
However, the Assin North MP’s political party, the NPP seemed to show justifications for the embattled MP’s ‘use of intemperate public statement’, in a statement signed by its National Chairman, Jake Obetsebi Lamptey.
“The New Patriotic Party takes note of the arrest yesterday, 16th April, 2012, of the Member of Parliament for Assin North, Hon. Kennedy Agyepong, for an intemperate public statement made by him last Friday in reaction to the unfortunate incidents in the Odododiodio constituency, Greater Accra Region…
“In the last few weeks Ghanaians have witnessed with dismay divisive statements by political leaders and violent acts, all because of the voter registration exercise. The NPP has been most disturbed by these acts of violence and intimidation, the inflammatory statements and other illegal acts that have been associated with the ongoing exercise. We have also been disturbed by the selective, partisan manner in which the law is being enforced in dealing with the situation. It was for this reason that we issued an open letter to the President of the Republic recently”.

Now read the reactions that followed Hon. Kennedy Agyapong’s arrest over comments he made last Friday on his radio station OMAN FM, as captured by various media outfits.
All must condemn Ken Agyapong’s comments – Kofi Asante
A Senior Research Officer at the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has said that he is expecting leaders of the various political parties to call their members to order and stop them from engaging in acts that could plunge the nation into chaos.

Mr Kojo Asante stated that politicians as well as the police administration would soon be held accountable for their conduct as the nation prepares for the upcoming elections in December.

“…I’m expecting that the party leaders…leaders in this country, if there are any adults in this country, that they stand up and speak the truth because the kind of hypocritical behavior that’s going on, that people are just allowed to be lawless” is not healthy for the nation’s peace, he said.

Speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show Tuesday, Mr Kojo Asante condemned the alleged treasonable comments made by Assin North MP Kennedy Agyapong. He is currently in the grips of officials of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) assisting in investigations.

“Yesterday was quite sad for me listening to Mr Kennedy Agyepong and that tape, and I think it has to be condemned with really no reservation,” remarked Mr Asante.

He further stated that even the tone of Ken’s comments was distasteful and urged those who have sought to rationalize it to desist from such acts.

According to Kojo Asante, one cannot “right a wrong with another wrong” and that if Ken’s concerns had to do with police inconsistency and tribalism, the remedy to ‘cure that mischief’ was not to “stoke more tribalism”.

He said: “It’s very disturbing that people will mass up…” to besiege the police headquarters where Ken was detained on Monday before being whisked away to the offices of the BNI.

“If we don’t put a stop to it now and all politicians say is that you did the last time so I am also doing it this time we are going to be in real trouble in this country,” he said.

He said the Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) is compiling all incidences where political leaders have made inflammatory statements and the subsequent action taken by the police.

“And we are going to hold the police accountable,” Mr Asante declared.

Myjoyonline.com|Dorcas Efe Mensah

WANEP: Ken Agyapong’s ‘Dangerous’ Comments Could Destroy Ghana
A Security Analyst, Emmanuel Bombande says comments by the New Patriotic Party Member of Parliament for Assin North, Kennedy Agyapong inciting ethnic violence against his party’s political opponents risks plunging Ghana into conflict.

Mr. Agyapong was picked up and interrogated by the Criminal investigations Department of the Police Service on Monday over comments described by the Police CID as treasonable.

He had declared war against his opponents on his radio station, Oman FM in Accra on Friday.

His comments sought to incite supporters of the main opposition NPP to launch reprisal attacks against supporters of the ruling NDC in the ongoing biometric voter registration exercise.

Speaking to XYZ News, Mr. Bombande who is the Executive Director of the West Africa Network for Peace Building (WANEP) said Mr. Agyapong’s dangerous comments could destroy Ghana’s democracy.

Mr. Bombande said “those comments are very unfortunate, very regrettable especially in the context of Ghana, a democratic model for Africa preparing for elections”.

He added “that it exacerbates the anxiety and tension and can increase the level of violence”

Meanwhile, a Sociology lecturer, Dr. Nana Obiri Yeboah says ethnic or tribal politics must be condemned in all uncertain terms.

According to him, politicians and individuals who use all means to deepen the ethnic cracks in the country ahead of the December polls must be shamed and made accountable for their actions.

Source: Radioxyz
KEN AGYAPONG’S COMMENTS ARE GENOCIDAL – LAWYER AMALEBA.
A legal practitioner at the Legal Resources Centre, Abraham Amaleba, has called for an objective non-partisan approach in dealing with what he has described as the genocidal comments by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP for Assin North.
Kennedy Agyapong was on Monday invited by the police on a possible charge of treason, for inciting supporters of the party to foment violence in the round-up to the December polls.
Mr Amaleba told XYZ News however, that Mr. Agyepong’s comments do not necessarily amount to treason but genocide which is equally dangerous and punishable by law. “If he is trying to overthrow the government of the day, that could be treasonable but if you call on people to attack another ethnic group or to attack a section of the population, then you are calling for genocide.”
Mr. Amaleba has therefore called on security agencies to dig deeper into the matter and execute the case dispassionately and according to the dictates of the law. “We should allow the security agencies to pick anybody who inspires violence and who wants to plunge this country into chaos… They are becoming common, we should not allow them. There must be a point where we say that enough is enough.”
Meanwhile, the Media Foundation for West Africa says it expects the leadership of the New Patrotic Party (NPP) to condemn Mr. Agyepong’s comments for its potential of disrupting the peace of the country.
Ken Agyapong’s comment inexcusable, indefensible – Akoto Ampaw
There appears to be some division among members of the National Media Commission (NMC) on what position to adopt about the alleged treasonable comments by the Member of Parliament for Assin North, Kennedy Agyapong.

The Executive Secretary of the Commission, George Sarpong, Tuesday refused to specifically condemn the comments widely denounced by political parties and civil society organizations.

There have been calls for the NMC to do same, but in an interview with Joy News Mr. Sarpong refers to an NMC statement that adopts a general approach and says nothing about Kennedy Agyepong’s comments.

But, a member of the commission and renowned lawyer, Akoto Ampaw holds a different view.

He believes the comments by Kennedy Agyepong deserve specific and outright condemnation.

He told Joy News: “Personally speaking, I think his comments are completely inexcusable and indefensible.

“And even if he had reasons to be provoked, those reasons do not in any way justify the kind of inflammatory language he used, to the extent that that statement incites people to violence, it ought to be condemned.
Joynews

Ken Agyapong Must Be Punished – KB Asante
Elderly statesman and former diplomat K.B Asante has endorsed calls for NPP MP for Assin North, Kennedy Agyapong to be sent to court if indeed the police have enough evidence that he actually incited violence with his latest comments on his radio station Oman FM.

Dr. KB Asante who is also a former chairman of the Ga-Dangbe council told XYZ News that incitement is punishable by law and anyone found culpable must be made to face the full rigors of the law.

“If anybody is heard openly saying something to incite hatred to a particular people therefore he is arrested and placed before court he must be charged.

“What do you need to investigate after all, if Kennedy Agyapong said what I hear he supposed to have said and the Police have evidence about it, he should be taken to court.

“There shouldn’t be any hullabaloo about investigations and long procedures and so on…he must be charged within a matter of hours” K.B Asante said. Source: Radioxyz

Ken Agyapong’s Comments Were Harsh But – Appiah Ofori
The Member of Parliament for Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa, PC Appiah Ofori, has in a subtle manner condemned the comments by his colleague MP, Kennedy Agyapong.

According to the outspoken MP, the comments by Kennedy Agyapong who is in the custody of the Police CID were too “harsh and unnecessary”.

Speaking in an interview with XYZ News, Hon. Appiah-Ofori said though the comments by the legislator were inflammatory, he made them out of frustration. Source: Radioxyz
Political Parties Condemn Kennedy Agyepong
What appeared to be an inciteful comment made by the embattled NPP Member of Parliament for Assin North, Kennedy Agyepong, has generated more condemnations from various political parties.

Commenting on the issue, the General Secretary of the People’s National Convention, Bernard Mornah thought his detention was appropriate.

He said, “It was most unfortunate that an Honorable Member of Parliament, could make such comments to the extent of inciting violence and I thought that it was condemnable by all well meaning people.”

He emphasised, “His subsequent arrest and for him probably to find the opportunity to regret the situation is one matter that I think was appropriate.”

“The law enforcement agencies will have to deal with people whose action can destabilise our society; to that extent I think that the law enforcement agencies acted correctly and what I will encourage is that irrespective of party or personality involved, anybody that makes such comments must be taken on and it must not be limited to one party.”

The National Secretary of the Progressive People’s Party, Kofi Asamoah Siaw, equally endorsed the police action.

“Mr. Kennedy Agyepong wanted to address a certain concern that he felt something has to be done about, but the way and manner he went about it you cannot support it.”

“He was preaching some ethnic groups against others and his prescription could have landed all of us in undesirable consequences that is to say a civil war.” Source: Citifmonline.com
Pratt Slams Ken Agyapong And NPP: What Kind Of Solidarity Is This? He Asks
Managing Editor of the “Insight” Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr., has questioned the decision by members of the opposition New Patriotic Party to scurry to the defence of beleaguered Parliamentarian, Kennedy Agyapong.

He believes that the NPP should either have issued a statement distancing itself from the comments made by the Assin North MP or better yet, suspends him from the party to avoid any collateral damage.

Commenting on the issue on PeaceFM’s “Kokrokoo” Morning Show, Kwesi Pratt was emphatic that the electoral fortunes of the NPP will be greatly affected by the utterances of the NPP MP.

“This issue occurred on Friday and I wonder if the attention of his fellow party members were not drawn to his comments….This is because under normal circumstances, moments after a party activist makes such a statement, the party will quickly distance itself…in another vein, the party can even suspend him to avoid any collateral damage. But the NPP allowed it to be discussed for four days without any action….And then when he was arrested the NPP is talking about solidarity action. Offering solidarity to someone who has declared ethnic war in Ghana? What kind of solidarity is that? The party should have issued a press statement distancing itself from his remarks;…that way the NPP would have grown much bigger and stronger….The NPPs campaign is going to be seriously affected by what he said for a very long time to come. Tensions are already mounting as a result of the impending election and instead of helping your party to win, you are rather destroying it. I don’t understand,” Kwesi Pratt said.

The seasoned journalist added that the incendiary statement by the legislator cannot be the position of the NPP. He also dismissed the argument that Ken Agyapong’s statement was in relation to the brutality meted out to Ursula Owusu and posited that the NPP MP has a penchant for making seditious comments.

“There are people in the NPP who are learned and knowledgeable and if they are to comment on Ursula’s attack, they would have given a better presentation. This is because what Kennedy Agyapong said is something which can lead to the downfall of NPP and you can’t tell me that what he said is the position of the NPP. That is not the position of the NPP…It cannot be true that Kennedy Agyapong made those remarks due to what happened to Ursula earlier on; that cannot be true. Even when former President Kufuor was in power that was what he used to do; it’s his stock in trade. He threatened to shoot me some time ago; when I had not even had any argument with him. It was during a normal discussion; so his recent comment is not due to an incident that happened earlier. How can an honourable Member of Parliament, an entrepreneur who owns his own radio and television station, go on-air and asked that Gas and Ewes should be lynched? When he was saying that did he forget that his party member (and National Chairman), Jake Obetsebi Lamptey is a Ga? Are there no Ewes in the NPP? These are comments which he should not have made in the first place. It got to a point the presenter asked him if he was declaring war and he said yes; the presenter tried to right his wrong but there was no stopping him…This was how Rwanda started…Ghana must be careful not to thread on that path,” he cautioned.
To him, the statement by the outspoken NPP MP was unprecedented.

Source: Rebecca Addo Tetteh/Peacefmonline.com
STATEMENT: Arrest Of Ken Is Evidence Of Selective Application Of The Law – NPP

The New Patriotic Party takes note of the arrest yesterday, 16th April, 2012, of the Member of Parliament for Assin North, Hon. Kennedy Agyepong, for an intemperate public statement made by him last Friday in reaction to the unfortunate incidents in the Odododiodio constituency, Greater Accra Region.

In the last few weeks Ghanaians have witnessed with dismay divisive statements by political leaders and violent acts, all because of the voter registration exercise. The NPP has been most disturbed by these acts of violence and intimidation, the inflammatory statements and other illegal acts that have been associated with the ongoing exercise. We have also been disturbed by the selective, partisan manner in which the law is being enforced in dealing with the situation. It was for this reason that we issued an open letter to the President of the Republic recently.

The NPP is fully behind the police in the execution of their mandate and we expect them to do this in a fair, even-handed and professional manner. However, the current posture of the police to take no action to protect our party members and ordinary Ghanaians, in the face of such acts of violence, intimidation and exclusion at the hands of the NDC, particularly in Odododiodio, poses a serious threat to the maintenance of peace and security nationwide.

The arrest of the MP for Assin North is further evidence of this selective application of the law. For the police to take no action against the perpetrators of violence but to suddenly discover their powers to take action against those, who in frustration, make statements in reaction to acts of violence and police inaction sends very worrying signals about the forthcoming general elections. This is affecting public confidence in the police. The Police Service must be professional and act without fear or favour.

The violence, intimidation and the apartheid manner in which the NDC parliamentary candidate for Odododiodio and a senior aide to the President, Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, has been conducting himself during this registration exercise is completely unacceptable. The President, the Commander-in-Chief, in whose office Nii Lantey Vanderpuye works, is yet to take any action against these blatant acts of lawlessness.

The NPP makes it absolutely clear that we do not support intemperate statements and actions that can incite and inflame ethnic passions. Ghana is a proud multi-ethnic country and the NPP, a truly national party, is committed to jealously guard and promote this heritage.

We urge our supporters to be calm in the face of provocation. This biometric registration exercise is about giving all Ghanaians voters an equal chance to decide, first, where they ‘ordinarily reside’ and, ultimately, on the future of their country on voting day. Our duty, as politicians, to those voters is to keep Ghana peaceful, democratic and just for all her citizens.

We applaud our party loyalists who have been defending these values and the integrity of the registration exercise in spite of the intimidation, violence, ethnic challenges they have faced. We encourage them to stay focused and be vigilant in monitoring the ongoing registration exercise. They should have courage and stay on the right side of the law.

We finally call on the President of the Republic to be at the forefront in ensuring law and order. His statement that he is not a police officer gives the unfortunate perception that the Commander-in Chief is distancing himself and his office from this all important responsibility of maintaining law, order and security for all citizens.

Signed

Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey
NPP, National Chairman
Source: Peacefmonline.com

Source: Al-Hajj

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