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General News Wed, 4 Apr 2001

VAG petitions government on executed generals

The Veterans Association of Ghana (VAG) on Tuesday presented a petition on behalf of the widows of Armed Forces Generals and other senior officers executed during the 1979 coup d'etat to Dr Kwame Addo Kufuor, Minister of Defence, for onward transmission to the President.

The widows of the executed officers presented a petition a fortnight ago to President John Agyekum Kufuor through the first lady, Mrs Theresa Kufuor for the bodies of their husbands to be released for proper burial.

Among those present at the VAG presentation were the widows of General Akwesi Afrifa, General E.K Utuka and Air Vice Marshal Yaw Boakye.

Executed in 1979 in the heat of the June 4 Uprising were General Afrifa, General Utuka, Air Vice Marshal Boakye, Rear Admiral Joy Amedume, General Ignatius Acheampong, Major-General Robert Kotei, General F.W.K. Akuffo and Colonel Roger Felli.

Major General E.K. Sam (rtd), a government nominee to the Council of State, who presented the petition, said as officers and gentlemen who served the nation, they should be given proper burial.

He urged government not only to release the bodies but give them full military burial in the tradition of the armed forces.

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Dr. Addo Kufuor said President Kufuor has expressed concern about the issue and that the matter was receiving an "urgent and sympathetic" attention.

He said the President's decision on the petition would be communicated to the widows.Dr Addo Kufuor referred to an alleged attack on the Osu Police Station by some soldiers and gave the assurance that those involved would be dealt with accordingly.

"As long as I remain the Minister of Defence, servicemen cannot brutalise people anyhow," he said. Some soldiers on Sunday allegedly attacked police personnel on duty at the Osu Police Station for detaining their colleagues.

The minister said servicemen are expected by government, the people and constitution to always behave in a responsible way.

At the meeting were the acting service commanders, other senior officers of the Ministry of Defence and Lt. Gen. Albert Ocran, Chairman of VAG.

Source: GNA
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