Ashaiman MP demands independent investigations; calls for withdrawal of soldier who killed civilian

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The Member of Parliament for the Ashaiman Constituency in the Greater Accra Region, Ernest Henry Norgbey is demanding an independent investigation into the killing of a civilian by a military personnel on Sunday, April 5, 2020.

According to the MP, an independent body must be constituted to probe the death of the man named, Eric Ofotsu because the military can’t be trusted to do an impartial job.

The deceased was shot dead at Ashaiman, during an operation by security forces enforcing the president’s lockdown directive. The military in a statement said the civilian attempted disarming the officer and in the course of that, the soldier’s weapon discharged accidentally.

Although the Ghana Armed Forces is investigating the incident, the Ashaiman MP believes the military won’t bring the real truth behind the circumstances that led to the death of the civilian.

Condemning the act, the MP called for an appropriate punishment and the withdrawal of the officer involved in the act.

“As much as the life of this young innocent gentleman cannot be brought back, I demand with immediate effect thorough and independent investigations into circumstances leading to the death of this young man.”

“We are also calling for the withdrawal of the trigger-happy soldier and all his colleagues on duty as at the time of the incident with immediate effect. This would be useful in managing tensions and preventing any further escalation,” he added.

He further alleged that the statement from the Ghana Armed Forces regarding the death of the civilian contradicts what eyewitnesses claim happened.

“Information gathered from the scene which I have no basis to doubt and contrary to the claims contained in the Military’s statement suggests that the deceased did not warrant this inhumane and disproportionate use of force from a professional military officer whose training demands a far worthy example,” he said.

Read the full statement below:

KILLING OF MR. ERIC OFOTSU – ASHAIMAN MP DEMANDS JUSTICE

I have received with shock and outrage news of the cold-blooded killing of Mr. Eric Ofotsu (A.K.A. No Yawa), a constituent of mine in his mid-thirties who was allegedly shot by a military officer working to ensure compliance of the President’s COVID-19 lockdown directives.

As Member of Parliament for the Ashaiman Constituency, I condemn in the strongest possible terms this barbaric and wicked act of a trigger-happy military officer.

Information gathered from the scene which I have no basis to doubt and contrary to the claims contained in the Military’s statement suggests that the deceased did not warrant this inhumane and disproportionate use of force from a professional military officer whose training demands a far worthy example.

As much as the life of this young innocent gentleman cannot be brought back, I demand with immediate effect thorough and independent investigations into circumstances leading to the death of this young man.

We are also calling for the withdrawal of the trigger-happy soldier and all his colleagues on duty at the time of the incident with immediate effect. This would be useful in managing tensions and preventing any further escalation.

I wish to commend the good people of Ashaiman for exercising great restraint in the face of needless provocation.

We in Ashaiman are disappointed in President Akufo-Addo who is Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces for his unacceptable silence on this major development when he addressed the nation on Sunday night, particularly as he sought to downplay the many incidents of human right violations and unwarranted excesses by security personnel enforcing his lockdown directives. A situation which the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice has had cause to publicly condemn.

May I add that as much as many military officers have been quite professional in enforcing the lockdown, I would want to decry the manner in which some unscrupulous few are bringing the much-respected image of the Ghana Armed Forces into utter disrepute.

I reiterate our demand for an independent investigation and swift sanctions for those who would be found culpable.

In the meantime, I urge calm and plead with the youth who are currently agitating to exercise patience and wait for the outcome of investigations.

We shall not rest or be silent until justice is secured for the family of Mr. Ofotsu and for my constituents.

May the Good Lord accept the soul of Mr. Eric Ofotsu especially on this holy Palm Sunday.

 

Signed,

Hon. Ernest Henry Norgbey
[MP, Ashaiman Constituency]

 

Source: ABCNewsgh.com

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