Vice President Alhaji Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has called on Ghanaian youth, especially those in the Zongo community, to resist any attempt to draft them into engaging in any anti-social activities, especially political vigilantism.
Rather, they should concentrate on tackling the major concerns of the Zongo communities, including jobs, education, and business development, thereby forming 'Job-lantes, Edu-lantes and Busi-lantes' instead of vigilante groups, to promote their welfare and the development of the nation.
Speaking at the 51st-anniversary celebration of the birth of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) Vice President Bawumia expressed worry that many of the people said to be engaged in political vigilantism and other anti-social behaviours are said to be drawn from the Zongo community.
"Allah has blessed the Zongo youth with multiple positive attributes and talents such as strength, courage, knowledge, sports skill, entrepreneurship, vocational skill, etc. and I want to urge the youth of this country, particularly my dear brothers in the Zongo Communities to put their God-given talents to good use for their own benefits and for the benefit of their respective families, communities as well as the nation.
"The youth of our country, particularly my brothers from the Zongo Communities, should not, under any circumstance, avail themselves to be used for any illegal activity, which also poses great risks to their valuable and cherished lives.
"I want to urge the youth who are involved in the operations of the various political parties to exhibit a great sense of tolerance, whether it is intra-party or inter-party contest. For the Zongo and Muslim youth, it is even more important, and an obligation to be tolerant and peaceful in accordance with the teachings of our beloved Prophet Muhammad," Bawumia stated.
It is instructive that the politicians who encourage political vigilantism and recruit such persons do not involve their children in such activities, Vice President Bawumia pointed out, adding, "They come to you and tell you to go and perpetuate violence and other acts while their own children are in school, doing good jobs or abroad working to better their lives. When these politicians come to you, ask them why they are not using their own children to do what they're asking you to do."
He emphasized that President Akufo-Addo has publicly indicated his resolve to crack down on political vigilantism, and would deal ruthlessly with anyone engaged in such activities.
The government, Dr. Bawumia indicated, would continue to invest in policies and programmes designed to provide jobs and improve Ghana's human capital, including the Free Senior High School, Planting for Food and Jobs, One Village One Dam and the Nation Builders Corps.
"Also, the government is set to undertake massive infrastructure development in the roads and other construction sectors this year, and this will create employment opportunities for many of our skilled and unskilled youth across the country, " he added.
The Vice President urged Muslim youth to be "positive ambassadors of our great religion by eschewing violence and intolerance. As I said earlier, under no circumstance should we allow ourselves to be used as destructive tools to perpetuate violence and all sorts of unacceptable acts."