Owusu Bempah attacker surrenders to police

BY: Emelia Ennin Abbey
DCOP Patrick Adusei Sarpong (right), Chief Superintendent of Police Mr Kwesi Ofori (2nd right) and other police officers from the Accra Regional Police Command assessing the security situation at the Glorious Word and Power Ministries International at Odorkor, Accra
DCOP Patrick Adusei Sarpong (right), Chief Superintendent of Police Mr Kwesi Ofori (2nd right) and other police officers from the Accra Regional Police Command assessing the security situation at the Glorious Word and Power Ministries International at Odorkor, Accra

A memeber of the youth group that allegedly vandalised the property of the Glorious Word and Power Ministries International at Odorkor, Accra, has been arrested by the Accra Regional Police Command.

Following the acts of vandalism, the Accra Regional Police Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Mr Patrick Adusei Sarpong, advised the perpetrators to hand themselves over to the police otherwise they would fish them out to face the full rigours of the law.

Last Wednesday, some irate youth attacked the Odorkor branch of the Glorious Word and Power Ministries International in Accra over prophecies by its Founder, Rev. Isaac Owusu Bempah, that some Ghanaian leaders, including the Chief Imam, Sheik Nuhu Sharabutu, would die this year.

Rev. Isaac Owusu Bempah had prophesied on New Year's Eve that some former Presidents and paramount chiefs would die this year.

The angry youth, believed to be Muslims, who issued a warning to Rev. Owusu Bempah to apologise and retract his pronouncements, also warned that they would continue to attack the church until they received the apology.

They stormed the church premises at Odorkor carrying machetes, stones and other implements and vandalised the place.
Videos of the incident, which were streamed live on Facebook by one of the attackers, went viral.

Police report

After the incident, a private security man (name withheld by the police) of the church reported to the Odorkor Police about 3 p.m. on Wednesday, January 2, 2019 that at 2 p.m. on the same day about 30 men besieged the church and vandalised property.

The items damaged, according to the security man, included two billboards, a water storage tank, sliding glass windows, a piano and a door.

Police visit

To bring the persons involved in the vandalism to book, the Accra Regional Police Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Mr Patrick Adusei Sarpong, warned the perpetrators to surrender otherwise the police would work around the clock to arrest them.

Shortly after issuing the warning, Mr Adusei Sarpong led a delegation of police officers from the command to assess the extent of the damage to the property of the church.

The visit was also to analyse the adequacy of security arrangements at the church and how volatile the place was.

Take over

A statement released by the Public Affairs Directorate of the Ghana Police Service yesterday said the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Headquarters had taken over investigations into the case and the suspect had been granted police enquiry bail to be reporting to the CID headquarters for further investigation.

The Police Administration, however, observed with concern a worrying trend of prophecies made by religious persons about the death of certain individuals, which had the tendency of breaching public peace and causing fear and panic in the country.

It, therefore, cautioned persons who made such pronouncements to be mindful of the security implications of their utterances.

It also observed that media reportage on such pronouncements and the interpretations put on the pronouncements in the media were also disturbing.

The statement, therefore, urged editors, media practitioners, discussants and owners of media establishments to be circumspect and exercise the necessary editorial responsibility to ensure that the media was not used as a tool for breaching the peace and causing fear and panic.

The Police Administration also condemned retaliatory acts by opposing factions and warned that causing harm, damage to property, rioting, threatening, among others, disturbed public peace and such acts were considered as crimes.

The police, therefore, advised the public to report actions which were likely to breach public peace or cause fear and panic to the nearest police station.

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