The National Peace Council (NPC) has called for the government to focus priority on tackling issues of exclusion in governance, corruption and unemployment to achieve lasting peace and development.
It added that the lack of food, access to good nutrition, health, education and other amenities together with the poor management of the nation’s resources needed to be effectively addressed because these could cause conflicts.
Mr. George Amoh, the acting Executive Secretary of the Council, said this when he spoke to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra, as Ghana marked 61 years of nationhood.
He indicated that ‘until we are able to do this, the peace we find in this country, would be termed as negative peace’.
That some people felt left out of the governance system, combined with high unemployment and huge environmental sanitation challenges were not a positive sign of sustained peace, he added.
‘We cannot continue to live in abject poverty, with people still begging and selling on the streets, and children walking dangerously along these paths, after 61 years.’
Mr. Amoh, who doubles as the Director for Conflict Resolution and Management at the NPC, reminded all to unite their effort to fight corruption, which was holding back the nation’s development and a potential source of conflict.
He said when the people saw that the resources belonging to them were being dissipated by a few, they would one day rise up to ‘demand their pound of flesh.’
He asked that the government gave serious attention to addressing human security issues through the reduction of illiteracy.
He noted that when the people were educated they would ensure better application of their minds to lift themselves out of poverty, reduce robberies and other social vices.
Mr. Amoh also spoke of the need to get many Ghanaians to participate in ‘our democracy’ – to open the door of inclusiveness, break down all barriers including gender and ethnic, while engaging the youth positively, to remove any form of threats, deviant behaviours and hooliganism.
In his assessment of the nation’s performance in the area of sustainable peace, he said it had not done badly.
‘Ghanaians have remained largely peaceful and tried to live in harmony since the beginning of the fourth Republic.’
By Christabel Addo, GNA