Diplomatic Shenanigans

The diplomatic shenanigans which National Security operatives enacted at the Movenpick (Ambassador) Hotel last week has given the country an indelible blemish. It will permanently remain etched in the minds of not only members of the Danish mission in Ghana, but also their counterparts from the larger diplomatic community. What was supposed to be an ordinary meeting between a visiting foreign dignitary whose country has an unwavering interest in the country�s democracy and the flag bearer of the largest opposition party, was tendentiously demonised by a government afflicted by acute paranoia. The fallout of the mess does not endear our country to the good books of the comity of civilized nations and it is regrettable that this is happening now. For those who thought such meanness was limited to local soapbox politics, they were definitely taken aback when it was extended to the complex world of diplomacy. When the Danish Foreign Affairs Minister and his host, the Danish Ambassador to Ghana, decide to compose their memoirs on their Foreign Service experience, the crude experience at the hands of uncouth National Security operatives who demanded to be part of a meeting for which they were not invited, would definitely find ample space. �Breaking The Barriers Of Diplomacy� would be such a wonderful heading for this entry in the imaginary memoir. In a fraternity where civil niceties are held in high esteem, any breach of these standards is widely considered a faux pas, not easily forgotten or forgiven. Such paranoia in a government which is still wobbling in the path of good governance, speaks volumes about the extent of desperation staring it in the face. Even the founder of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) is not spared the paranoia of those at the helm of the affairs of the political grouping. If their presence at the Movenpick (Ambassador) Hotel, as contained in the story on the subject elsewhere in this edition, is disturbing, their disregard for the niceties of diplomacy culminating in their demand to be part of the meeting, an order from above, does our image incalculable damage. When will this nonsense about orders from faceless government officials in the name of National Security stop? Only psychotic government functionaries will shake in their trousers when they smell a meeting between a member of the donor community and the presidential candidate of the largest opposition. Let us be civil in how we manage such issues so that the reputation of the country will not be tarnished unduly. We cannot afford to be the laughing stock in the comity of civilized nations. The denial of the envoy to the request of the unkempt and uncouth National Security operative to be part of the meeting and a subsequent transfer of the engagement to another location, is a symbolic bluff from a member of the diplomatic community, news about which will resonate at the Foreign Ministry in Denmark. An avoidable embarrassment too awful to be ignored!