The General Secretary of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketiah has called the three-member commission to inquire into the mayhem that marred the by-elections held in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency last Thursday as fake.
He said the commission was set up to cover up the violence and its perpetrators because the posture of the Akufo-Addo led government is not willing to prosecute its own thugs.
He told Kwame Minkah, host of Ete Sen on Radio XYZ 93.1 that the outcome of the enquiry will “not lead any where.”
“Quote me anywhere that I say the president’s commission of enquiry is fake,” he averred and added: “The commission is just to deceive Ghanaians that the government cares about the barbaric act at Ayawaso West Wuogon”
“NPP is not ready to prosecute anyone for Ayawaso West Wuogon violence. Whether it’s Bryan Acheampong or whoever they won’t punish anyone that’s why they have set this commission,” he added.
Questioning the rationale behind the commission, Asiedu Nketiah said a constitutional instrument, per the constitution, should have been laid before Parliament before establishing the commission, and added that as far as he is concerned nothing of that sort has been done except that the presidency issued a statement to announce its formation.
“This Commission of they [NPP] have formed has is flawed at births. In fact it is fake,” Mr Asiedu Nketiah said.
Francis Emile Short, a former Commissioner for the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), was named as the chair of the Commission, while former Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Patrick Kwarteng Acheampong and law professor, Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu were also named as members of the commission.
Justice Emile Short
A statement issued and signed Wednesday, by Director of Communications for the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, went on to announce that Private legal practitioner and former Dean of the GIMPA Law School, Dr. Ernest Kofi Abotsi, has also been appointed as Secretary to the Commission.
The statement said the Commission was set up by Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, with the consent of President Nana Akufo-Addo, who is out of the country.
The term of reference of the Commission are:
(a) to make a full, faithful and impartial inquiry into the circumstances of, and establish the facts leading to, the events and associated violence during the Ayawaso West Wuogon By-Election on the 31st day of January 2019;
(b) to identify any person responsible for or who has been involved in the events, associated violence and injuries;
(c) to inquire into any matter which the Commission considers incidental or reasonably related to the causes of the events and the associated violence and injuries; and
(d) to submit within one month its report to the President giving reasons for its findings and recommendations, including appropriate sanctions, if any,” the statement explained.
It will be recalled that during the elections on Thursday January 31,2019, NDC MP for Ningo Prampram, Sam George, was assaulted by alleged heavily armed thugs who were causing mayhem at the La-Baweleshie Presby Basic 1 JHS.
A similar situation occured at the residence of Mr Delali Kwesi Brempong, the NDC candidate for Ayawaso West Wuogon, where at least 6 NDC members were shot by masked men believed to be members of NPP vigilante group, the Invincible Forces.
The NDC eventually announced it had withdrawn from the elections which was later won by the late MP’s girlfriend, Lydia Seyram Alhassan.
The Akufo-Addo government is under fire following the bloody elections and the silence of Ministers who are in charge of the country’s security, especially after reports confirmed that the perpetrators of the melee were ‘NPP hooligans’ who were clad in Police uniform and drove freely in pick-up trucks with the Ghana Police Service insiginia.
However, the Electoral Commission (EC), the NPP Communications Directorate insist the incident happened outside the polling station and that, the polls were very peaceful.
Meanwhile, calls have intensified for the dismissal of Minister of State in charge of National Security at the Presidency, Bryan Achempong, if he fails to resign with immediate effect.
A Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), Dr Kwesi Jonah has charged the police to probe Mr Acheampong who is also MP for Abetifi, for the violent attacks.
It follows his admission that he ordered the suspected thugs robed and armed with Police accoutrements to the polling centres.
Analyst of the video footage of the brutalities and slides captured from it, have identified some of the men, believed to be members of the NPP Vigilante group, Invisible Forces.
Fresh videos in which one of those involved is heard screaming this is the beginning of 2020 is even raising more fears among a section of the public who are piling pressure on government to sack the National Security Minister and ensure thorough investigations.