General News of 2014-02-06

Akosa: Nkrumah’s PDA was necessary to deal with terrorists

Staunch Nkrumaist Prof Agyemang Badu Akosa has justified the need for the Preventive Detention Act/Order of 1958 and 1961.

The Act/Order had the blessing of Parliament at the time and permitted the detention of subversive elements without trial for up to five years. It was later extended to 10 years.

Dr J.B. Danquah, one of the founder-members of the pre-independent United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) was one of the top politicians who fell victim to the law.

He died in the Nsawam Medium Security prison on February 4, 1965 while serving time for alleged subversive activities against the Nkrumah Government. He was 69 years old.

Parliament on Wednesday commemorated the 49th anniversary of Dr Danquah’s death.

Abuakwa South Legislator Samuel Atta Akyea said in Parliament in a statement he read that the Act/Order “rather unfortunately gave expression to Constitutional absolutism”.

In his view, it was an “instrument used twice by President Nkrumah to incarcerate Dr Danquah”.

Also Subin MP, Isaac Osei, bemoaned that not only was Dr Danquah incarcerated without trial but also “denied his medication and he died in prison and had to suffer the indignity of being buried within 48 hours contrary to the traditions and culture of his own ethnic group”.

Prof Akosa told Strict Proof on Radio XYZ that the subversive activities perpetrated against Nkrumah’s Government at the time, necessitated the enactment of the PDA.

“When you live in a country where a certain proportion of the people had taken to nothing but violence; planning assassinations attempts against the Government or the country, something needed to be done and therefore, for that moment, it was necessary”, Prof Akosa argued.

In a rebuttal, Mr Atta Akyea said even when laws are passed, they must be enforced fairly based on evidence.

“…What is Prof Akosa talking about? You should apply the law when you know and have reason to believe that this one is a terrorist”.

Source: XYZ
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