17th May 2024

L-R: Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso, Justice George Kingsley Koomson and Juliet Adiema Amoah are expected to begin sitting today

The three-member ministerial committee put together by the Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery, to investigate the recent disturbances recorded at Ejura, in the Ashanti Region, is scheduled to have its first sitting today.

The sittings are expected to take place at the Prempeh Assembly Hall, in Kumasi, starting at 10: 00 am each day.

This was announced in a press statement signed by Ms Marie Louise Simmons, Media Liaison Officer for the committee.

The setting up of the committee followed an order from President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

Members of the committee are a Justice of the Court of Appeal, Justice George Kingsley Koomson (Chairman of the committee); a Security Analyst, Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso; and the Executive Director of Penplusbytes, Juliet Adiema Amoah. They are expected to receive evidence from witnesses to ascertain the circumstances that led to the disturbances.

The committee is expected to submit its report to the government within 10-days.

Preparatory works

The committee began its preparatory arrangements with a visit to the Ejura Traditional Council, the leadership of the Zongo community and affected families.

Speaking to journalists, Chairman of the Committee, Justice George Kingsley Koomson, said an invitation had been extended to some witnesses.

He also urged persons with evidence to turn up at the sitting to assist the committee.

Minority

Meanwhile, the Minority in Parliament had said they would push for a resolution that would seek to compel the President to set up a presidential commission of inquiry into the disturbances.

Ranking Member on the Defence and Interior Committee, James Agalga, said Parliament must take an interest in the matter.

“We have drafted a resolution under Article 178 for the Speaker’s consideration. If he responds to us favourably, we will want to move the House to actually force the hand of the President to consider replacing the ministerial committee with a commission of inquiry to do this job,” he said.

Head of the family of one of the killed protesters, Abdulai Abubakar, also expressed support for the setting up of a commission of enquiry instead of the ministerial committee.

“I want them to take the problem to Parliament. The Parliamentarians should choose a commission of inquiry or the international community. Those people who came in, there were policemen men and army men.

“Who sent them? It is the Minister. Do you think this Minister will defend us and leave them?” Mr Abubakar quizzed.

Interior Minister Ambrose Derry, however, assured the committee would be dispassionate in conducting the probe.

“The unfortunate circumstances will be investigated and appropriate recommendations made. Nana, I assure you of the commitment of the government to ensure peace and security in Ghana,” he hold the chief of Ejura when he visited the town.

Background

The President’s directive for the setting up of the committee followed the killing of two people and the injuring of four others by soldiers during a protest against the killing of a social activist, Ibrahim Muhammed.

The deceased, alias Macho Kaaka, died on Monday, June 28, 2021, after he was allegedly attacked by a mob while returning home on his motorbike at Ejura.

He was rushed to the Ejura Government Hospital and later referred to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, where he died at midday on June 28.

Police in the Ashanti Region have since arrested three persons in connection with his death and put them before the court.

Meanwhile, one of the four injured persons, a sixteen-year-old boy, has had one of his legs amputated at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.

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