OccupyGhana® demands prosecution of lawless soldiers

BY: Isaac Yeboah
The soldiers and police in Tamale smoke peace pipe
The soldiers and police in Tamale smoke peace pipe

OccupyGhana® has condemned the physical assault visited on policemen on duty in Tamale on Wednesday, and says the soldiers responsible for the assault should be arrested and prosecuted.

OccupyGhana® in a statement issued Thursday, called on the government, the Minister of Defence, the Minister of National Security and the Chief of Defence Staff to immediately cause the arrest of all the perpetrators of the dastardly crime against the Police Officers and surrender them for prosecution before civil courts to the fullest extent permissible by the Laws of Ghana.

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The group said lining up the suspects before the law “will send a clear signal to others with the same violent propensities that wearing a uniform and bearing arms provided with our tax monies is not an excuse to misbehave and visit violence on the rest of us.”

A group of yet to be identified soldiers on Thursday set upon on-duty policemen in Tamale and bloodied them for allegedly arresting one of their colleagues involved in a case of assault.

The Interior Minister and other security bosses have since the incident indicated they were working to patch up the differences.


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Below is the statement in full.


OCCUPYGHANA® CONDEMNS AND DEMANDS ACTION ON REPORTED MILITARY ASSAULT ON POLICE PERSONNEL IN TAMALE

OccupyGhana® wishes to register its extreme concern and disgust at the criminal assault reportedly inflicted upon police officers by elements of the Ghana Armed Forces in the Tamale Metropolis. The police officers, we understand, were simply going about their legitimate policing duties only to be pounced upon and beaten up by soldiers.

This apparently all-out assault on police officers, some of whom were at post guarding National Assets such as the Bank of Ghana and other financial institutions in Tamale, leaves a terrible impression of the Armed Forces. We are appalled that any security institution would misuse and abuse the powers bestowed by the Constitution and facilities provided by our taxes in such a depraved manner.

We are also concerned that this impunity continues because in the face of a history that is replete with such attacks on society by military personnel, there has been precious little to no reports of the actual prosecution, conviction and sentencing of perpetrators. This has emboldened clearly renegade behaviour that must be addressed and curtailed forthwith.

We call upon the Government of Ghana, the Minister of Defence, the Minister of National Security and the Chief of Defence Staff to immediately cause the arrest of all the perpetrators of this dastardly crime against the Police Officers and surrender them for prosecution before our civil courts to the fullest extent permissible by the Laws of Ghana. This will send a clear signal to others with the same violent propensities that wearing a uniform and bearing arms provided with our tax monies is not an excuse to misbehave and visit violence on the rest of us.

Any attempt to subject this act to some “internal” disciplinary procedure to which we would not be privy would be unacceptable and signify official complicity of what is frankly grave criminality.

We wish to issue a two-week ultimatum to the Government to get to the bottom of this matter and to announce to Ghanaians a clear roadmap that punishes the wrong and does right by the victims. We also expect the institution of measures that would prevent this from happening in future and ensure that the Military never forgets that its true place under a democratic, constitutional dispensation is under civilian governance.

Yours, for God and Country,

OccupyGhana®