On the Accra Mall Panty “Thieves” and The Rule of Law

1. This is not a gender issue for me

2. This is not even really a human rights issue for me

It’s about the rule of law. “The Rule of Law is the foundation of a civilised society. It establishes a transparent process accessible and equal to all.”

I’ve read reactions to this Accra Mall punishment-by-crawling case, even from young lawyers and law students, and I’m thinking.. should I be worried? A few declarations, in case you’re going to allow yourself to be overcome by emotion or whatever it is that fuels your departure from civilised reasoning.

1. I do not condone stealing.

2. I have been robbed before. Twice actually. Read about  my most recent experience here.

People, we have laws for a reason. That constitution thing – it’s not for decoration. CEO of Mr. Price has already come out to condemn the actions of the security staff because in the world of big boys and girls, when you take the law into your own hands, even if you’re right, chances are, you get punished. Sometimes, the person who “wronged” you even goes scot-free.

As I mentioned earlier, I have been robbed before and when Evans Mensah of Joy fm asked me if I would have supported the police if they shot my attackers instead of arresting them, taking them to court.. etc.. I said NO.

I’m not Mother Theresa or Gandhi, but laws are laws. Catch a thief, take her/him to the police. Simple.

Are you still holding on to your dreams of instant justice? Here’s a scenario for you.

You are at work when you get a phone call – your child has just been knocked down by a vehicle and is being rushed to the hospital. It’s that hospital where they won’t treat you if you haven’t paid yet, so you get into your car and head in that direction, tears streaming down your face and prayers on your lips. You are breaking the speed limit and since you forgot to put on your seat-belt  AND you’re on the phone with your spouse/parent, you’re breaking other laws as well. You are approaching a traffic light at Nima. It’s going to turn amber, and then red soon, so you make a dash for it. At the same time, a little child making his way home from school dashes across the street, because, well… he’s a kid. Your 2008 Toyota highlander smashes his little body, the force of impact lifting him up 1.5 metres from the ground. You hit your brakes.. too late. He’s dead before he falls, his brains spilling out of a gaping hole where half of his face used to be. His mother rushes to her son’s body, her guttural screams piercing the air.

It’s Nima. There are young men around, you see them coming for you and yet you can’t move. You’re paralysed by shock.

Rule of Law or Instant Mob Justice?

Now, here’s a quick IQ test.

If you catch someone stealing from you. What do you do?

a. Bash the person’s face in with a fufu pestle like the neanderthal you are

b. Make the person crawl out of your house.. (for the vine) and so the person comes back to steal another day. Ahiaa for crawling?

c. Make a citizens arrest without abusing the “thief”, and take her/him to the nearest police station, because you are civilised, and because you are wise.

d. Tweet about it.

Text your answer to shortcode 4007 for your IQ test result, and you could be the winner of a slightly used space shuttle.

11 thoughts on “On the Accra Mall Panty “Thieves” and The Rule of Law

  1. This is my first time am reading your post or visiting your blog. But trust me i loved the way you started down to the way you ended.. I really love the way you constructed your sentences and the way you linked your previous post to it.. Dear, all i could tell you is keep it up and i have already bookmarked ur site.

  2. i choose c becos it could be me or a loved one ad since it da right tin to do…If God give us second chance then who ar we to condem

  3. In as much I believe I am too dumb to take that IQ test, there is something more I want us to discuss. I know I will be deviating from the main subject but the truth be told, you’re one of those finest bloggers in Ghana who write. I mean really write just like Opuni of Lifeinkumasi.com.

    It is rare to find a Ghanaian lady blogger as most of the other bloggers are into the entertainment niche and the best they do is to copy and best.

    I am Emmanuel with kabenlah.com and there is something I intend discussing with you. I want you to be one of the greatest bloggers Ghana has ever produced. I blog on Blogging and do admire people like you.

  4. I’ve seen a lot of discussion on this issue. From twitter to office to whatsapp etc etc. My views
    1. I dont condone stealing or thieves
    2. I dont condone mob justice either. Its too possible that mistakes are made and the wrong person beaten to death or something similar
    Now… I think to a certain degree the girls got of easily (in the long run). Sure they are (in)famous now. But its the world. People will forget eventually. However if the police had been called then you would have a criminal record. And that has the potential to screw you up big time. This is however not to say that Mr. Price or the security men were right because they weren’t.Imagine and 10 to 15 years time when they apply for a job. on the application form there’s a space for criminal record and just by ticking yes no job. Because face it most proper self respecting companies will not want employees who can be associated with criminal activities. Still doesnt make crawling or any other self administered punishment right though

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