Brigadier General (rtd) Joseph Nunoo-Mensah

Brigadier General (rtd) Joseph Nunoo-Mensah

? Even if that will make him a one term President

Head of Human Security Department at the National Security Secretariat, Brigadier General (rtd) Joseph Nunoo-Mensah has charged President John Dramani Mahama to be resolute and take all the ?hard? decisions required to give the country a befitting outlook.

According to him, if President Mahama and the National Democratic Congress government do not master the ?needed moral and political will? to enforce the laws of the country, the recent devastating floods that claimed over 160 lives and destroyed properties worth millions of Ghana cedis could happen again.

Reacting to the June 3 flood disaster, Gen Nunoo-Mensah, who is Ghana?s only twice Chief of Defense Staff, said ?what happened at circle is a source of worry to all of us?all of us would have wished that it never happened, but it has happened so the time to act is now.?

In an exclusive interview The aL-hAJJ, Gen Nunoo-Mensah stated ?when an old man is saying something, don?t think he is not qualified to say it, he?s seen it all. I?m talking from experience. What happened last week would happen again unless certain actions are taken. We need to get our house in order if not it will cost us in future.?

?In the euphoria of the chaos, people should be wondering how such a thing could happen? When you have people in Ghana who can think, who have the foresight to think that Accra is flood prone area and that flood could occur and that something needed to be done to ease the flood?unfortunately, we don?t have the guts and political will to deal with some of these things. Because of politics, we have failed to act,? Gen Nunoo-Mensah stated. 

Time To Act Now

The former National Security Adviser to President Mills noted that time has come for the President and his appointees to take the bull by the horn and enforce the laws that will rid the country of filth and authorized structures even if that will cost government the needed votes.

?When you insist that the right thing should be done, people think you don?t understand politics. Because of political expediency, we?ve allowed some of these things to develop into disasters and now we are facing the consequences. What happened last week is a wakeup call on the President to act now. He shouldn?t be afraid of losing votes,? he added. 

Advocacy for Ban of Polythene

He revealed that some time back he ?took a fight? to advocate for the ban of polythene and sachet bags as a means of preventing flood but his advocacy was not taken serious, saying ?what I said in a letter I wrote to the Minister of Environment Science and Technology some time back on the need for us to ban polythene has come to past?

?I took a fight to ban polythene and sachet bags, but people did not understand. If my campaign had been allowed and what I recommended was followed through, the lives we lost on that fateful Wednesday wouldn?t have happened, but for the fear that we will lose votes, that idea was shelved. These polythene and sachet bags block waterways and gutters and it makes it difficult for water to flow when it rains,? Gen Nunoo-Mensah intimated.

Obviously feeling crestfallen his advocacy was sacrificed on the altar of political expediency, the former military strongman, said ?when I started this campaign and wrote to all the big men who matter in government, I was told to wait?we will lose votes; after the elections we will do it?the problem of the country is that we know what to do to prevent some of these disasters but we don?t do it because we fear we will lose votes.?

He said if the President does not stamp his feet to ensure that polythene bags are banned immediately, ?we will lose thousands of lives in the future. Countries like Kenya, Rwanda and others have banned it and those countries are clean.?

?The AMA boss begun demolishing structures on waterways some years back but some people took him on and he stopped; now look at what has befallen the country. If there is need to pull down structures on waterways, let?s do it now ?we will not lose votes. If we fail to do what is right, we will put others at risk. Because of few people or small votes you will lose, you put others to danger? You need to balance the number of votes you will lose with the ones that you will gain if you take appropriate action.?

?I don?t believe you will lose votes if you ban polythene or pull down structures on waterways; even if you will lose votes, what is wrong with that? If the action is well intentioned, the people will support you?and when you clear the mess they will vote for you to continue the good works,? the retired Army General noted.

Mahama Must Succeed 

The Human Security Department Head noted that President Mahama must be assisted to deliver on his mandate and on his promise to Ghanaians, adding ?President Mahama must succeed and we must all help him to achieve that.?

?President Mahama is suffering because most of his appointees don?t know what they are about. It hurts that when you know how to do something and someone is not doing it well and you want to assist the person, but he is not ready to accommodate you. Most of the ministers when you call them, they won?t mind you?they will tell you they are busy. I am ready to go to a minister as young as my son and give him advise on what should be done for the President to succeed but they won?t allow you to meet them,? he painfully stated.

Source: The Al-Hajj


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