Security Analyst, Adib Saani has questioned the propriety of the comments made by Ghana’s Leader, Akufo-Addo in relation to the Wagner Group’s alleged operation on Ghana’s northern border with Burkina Faso.
President Nana Akufo-Addo said the military government of Burkina Faso has hired Russian mercenaries to help fight an insurgency in their country while allocating a mine to pay them.
He added: “Burkina Faso has now entered into an arrangement to go along with Mali in employing the Wagner forces there. I believe a mine in southern Burkina has been allocated to them as a form of payment for their services. The Prime minister of Burkina Faso in the last 10 days has been in Moscow. And to have them operating on our northern border is particularly distressing for us in Ghana”.
President-Akufo-Addo who is in Washington for the US-Africa Leaders Summit raised the concerns at a meeting on Wednesday (December 14, 2022) with United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken. This was contained in a statement released by the U.S. Department of State.
Commenting on the fallout from the development, Adib Saani said since independence, Ghana has maintained a non-aligned posture in the global political chess games between the East and the West thus “Our decision not to take sides has helped us gain respect and favour from both sides of the divide.”
He opined “But it’s absolutely demeaning for the President, flanked by his ministers, to sit in front of a Secretary of State to report on Wagner, a group that has not in any way neither threatened to invade Ghana nor has it done anything that poses any threat to the security of Ghana.”
Saani who is also Head of the Jatikay Centre for Human Security and Peace Building maintained that Burkina Faso is a sovereign country and can decide to call on whoever to help it fight any threat to their nation.
“When Ghana hosted the Americans through the defence cooperation agreement, no country in the sub-region complained. So why does our President make such a mockery of us by going to report on an issue that has nothing to do with us hence, bringing us international disrepute,” he queried.
Consequently, he observed that diplomatic relations with Russia will be gravely affected due to the President’s unfortunate statement.
“The statements will also negatively affect cooperation towards implementing various aspects of the Accra Initiative. The Burkinabes wouldn’t trust us again. So would the Malians.
“Major global political players such as the US, Britain, Turkey, Egypt, France, etc all work with various mercenary groups in different parts of the world. Blackwater has been cited for various human rights violations including torture and killing of children in Iraq. The French have on several occasions negotiated and worked closely with militants in the Sahel for safety guarantees.”