An International Relations Expert and the Dean of the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Professor Vladimir Antwi-Danso has cast doubt on the ability of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to bring an end to the overthrow of governments in the region.
He said ECOWAS measures are not punitive enough to deter people from removing governments through the gun.
Prof Antwi-Danso described the six month ultimatum given the coup leaders in Guinea by the ECOWAS to return to constitutional democracy, is ridiculous.
On Thursday September 16, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Jean-Claude Kissie Brou, told the media after the extraordinary summit in Accra, Ghana that coup leaders had been given six months to usher the country back to
ECOWAS in its communique announced imposition of sanctions on junta members in both Guinea and Mali.
They as well as their family members have been banned from travelling and their financial assets have been frozen. This has been communicated to international bodies like AU, UN, EU and other bilateral bodies.
“[The heads of state] also, of course, reaffirmed ECOWAS’ firm commitment to work and help Guinea in this process of restoring the constitutional order.
“They insisted also on the close support of traditional partner the United Nations, the African Union, European Union and also other bilateral countries and they also decided that there will be a visit by the Chair of the Authority to the Republic of Guinea as soon as possible to convey those messages regarding the decision of the Summit personally.”
Speaking in an interview with TV3’s Komla Adom on the mid-day news on Friday September 17, Prof Antwi-Danso said the problem is that I do not think that ECOWAS is worng in applying what they themsklevs had aready appended their signatires to , that is the protocol, but whether the protocol is the most effective way of ensuring that no such thing happens in our part of the world again is something I doubt.
“Sanctions on them means they can’t have access to their monies in West Africa, again travel bans . Are they interested in coming to Ghana or to Cote D’Ivoire? Suspensions. These are things already in the protocol, it is like a law so once it is in the law they must apply it. My worry as a watcher of these events is whether they bite.
“These action don’t, it didn’t work in Mali and I don’t think it will work in the future.
“That is one of the ridiculous things I find in the ECOWAS Communique, six months.
“It means we are being mechanical about democracy, we make democracy like and event when the ingredient of the event happens the event goes on.”