Coups are not the umltimate solutions to the challenges in Africa – President Akufo Addo 

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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has shared his sentiment about the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine in regards to constant calls for a coup in Sub-Sahara Africa.

At the African Union Peace and Security Council Forum on Unconstitutional Changes of Governments in Africa, held on Tuesday, March 15, 2022, at the Kempinski Hotel Accra, Nana Addo delivered a keynote where he mentioned that even though it has taken a long time for a consensus to emerge in Ghana, and, indeed, in Africa, that the democratic form of governance is preferable, “we should not take it for granted that everybody has accepted democracy as the preferred mode of governance.”

“Our unity and resolve should send a clear message to coup plotters that coups have never been, and will never be durable solutions to Africa’s political, economic, and security challenges. Statements condemning coups alone without corresponding action will, however, achieve little or nothing, as witnessed in recent times. This problem requires collective agreement, effective deterrence, bold action and, equally important, adequate preventive measures.”

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According to him, “there are those who hanker after authoritarian, personal rule, because they claim Africa is underdeveloped and democracy is cumbersome, and we need to get things done in a hurry. There are those who seek short-cuts to the office to exercise power without limits, and there are those who have no respect for the free choices of our sovereign people because they do not accord with their so-called ideological preferences.”

Against this background, reiterated that “we still have some work to do to convince such people that we are all safer under democracies”.

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Citing data from the 2019 Annual Risk of Coup Report, the President noted that Africa has experienced more coup d’états than any other continent, with thirty percent (30%) of all coup attempts on the continent having occurred in democracies.

“As current Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of States, I have witnessed directly the devastating effects that coups d’états and attempted coups have had on the region. There have been at least three such occurrences in Mali, Guinea, and Burkina Faso, and an unsuccessful attempt in Guinea Bissau. As some of you may know, the AU and other Regional Economic Communities (RECs), such as ECOWAS, have identified a myriad of factors underpinning unconstitutional changes of government,” President Akufo-Addo said.

He continued: “Among them are, according to the AU Peace and Security Council, ‘deficiencies in governance, political greed, mismanagement of diversity, failure to seize opportunities, marginalization, human rights violations, unwillingness to accept electoral defeat, manipulation of constitutions and their revision through unconstitutional means to serve personal narrow interests’ and so on.”

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