The Progressive People’s Party’s (PPP) booklet, which is taking signatures to compel President John Mahama against freeing the Montie 3 contemnors, has been mysteriously stolen by unknown thugs.
The three, Godwin Ako Gunn, Alistair Nelson and Maase Salifu, were jailed four-months for criminal contempt of the Supreme Court after threatening the lives of Justices.
Following their incarceration, fans of the three, who work for the pro-NDC radio station, have repeatedly asked the President to activate his prerogative of mercy powers under Article 72 of the 1992 Constitution.
The book, which has about 1,700 signatures yet to be handed over to the President, is believed to have been stolen by three young men who had pretended they were also signing the booklet at the PPP’s headquarters. The two other booklets, which were also being signed, have about 1,000 signatures according to the PPP’s Communications Director, Papa Kow Ackon.
He says the party has reported the theft case to the Nima Police Station. Among the several individuals who have signed the petition, are the PPP’s Flagbearer, Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom and his running mate.
A group affiliated to the NDC, which calls itself the Research and Advocacy Platform (RAP) were first to seek signatures in a petition, to compel President Mahama to use his prerogative power of mercy to free the three. The RAP petition received public support from notable Government appointees and officials of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC).
The petition has since been received by the President through the Chief of Staff and forwarded to the Council of State for advice. But the PPP, which is opposed to the idea of freeing the three, was thus compelled to open the counter petition to prevent the President from freeing them.
Confirming the rather bizarre news of the stolen petition booklet on Citi Eyewitness News, the PPP’s Papa Kow Ackon, described the incident as disappointing. “This is very shameful and we have subsequently reported the case to the Nima Police Station. Just today [Tuesday], around 3:30pm, a group young people who will not be more than 40 years, came to the party office with the intention to also sign the petition.
And after the signing, we realized later when other people came to the office to sign, that the particular book was nowhere to be found. And so the administrator at the office, called some of us to find out from us what had happened. And we told him to report the case at the Nima Police Station and that has been done.
And we are hoping that the police will investigate this matter because it is worrying hat a book that contains about 1,700 names for people to storm our office to steal this booklet, my goodness! We don’t expect people to behave in this manner.
The issue on the floor is a serious issue and we as party people are very committed to ensuring that our judiciary is not run down the way some people want it to be.” When asked by Richard Sky whether the party had not been irresponsible by failing to protect assets at its office, Mr. Ackon said, “If you know the PPP Headquarters, the reception is quite big and its always bustling with activities, people are walking in and out of the place.
This is for the good of this country so even though there is an administrator there, he also has other responsibilities and his job is not to be policing a booklet.
In this 21st century, you don’t expect people to be stealing booklet; it is unheard of so for this thing to have happened today we are extremely shocked. If people can steal booklet then we are not safe in this country.” “I however agree with you that the administrator at the office should have been a bit vigilante to make sure that nobody walks in to steal; but I think that he had the best of intentions and never anticipated that anyone will walk into the party office and steal nothing other than a booklet. This is shameful.”