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General News Wed, 9 May 2018

YoHRA nudges CHRAJ to release report on 2-year-old ‘military brutality’ case

YoHRA, an NGO that promotes fundamental human rights in Africa, is demanding the release of a report on an alleged brutality by three military personnel on one Christopher Kombian Piffa in 2016.

The NGO says the inability of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to release a status report on the investigations adds to a myriad of factors that have been fueling the continuous abuse of civilians by men in uniform in recent times.

“It is sad that after two years…CHRAJ has not brought out and publish its findings and recommendations on the matter. We believe that such slow responses to victims of military brutality accounts for the continuous abuses and violations in the country,” YoHrRA said in a petition to CHRAJ.

Background

On April 4, 2016, Christopher Kombian Piffa was alleged to have stolen a mobile phone by three military persons who thoroughly searched him and found no such phone with him.

However, later that day, the victim who usually runs errands for the three military personnel invited Christopher into their barracks and allegedly assaulted him after they failed a second time to get the missing phone from him.

“The victim then Petitioned CHRAJ to launch a full-scale Human Rights Investigation into this very dastardly act and make appropriate recommendations to forestall any future occurrence of same. It is very disappointing that for such a major public interest matter, the victim has still not seen justice,” YoHRA said.

The NGO has, therefore, called on the human rights ombudsman to immediately prioritise the matter and grant Christopher justice.

Read the full YoHRA petition (which copied to the Attorney General And Ministry of Justice) below.

REQUEST FOR STATUS REPORT ON HUMAN RIGHTS INVESTIGATION

RE: COMPLAINT OF HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATION OF CHRISTOPHER BARMAH (CHRISTOPHER KOMBIAN PIFFA) BY THREE (3) MILITARY OFFICERS

We write in respect of the above subject and would be grateful if you could provide us with a status report of your investigation.

You will recall that on 25th April 2016, a Petition for and on behalf of Mr Christopher Barmah was submitted to the Commission for Investigations.

This matter has been referred to the Advocacy and Litigation Department of the Youth For Human Rights Africa, with instructions for us to follow up and find justice for the victim.

We note that today is exactly two (2) years when this petition was written and served on the Commission and it is quite unfortunate that, no conclusive report has been generated on the matter so far.

The State has an obligation under Articles 55 of the Charter of the United Nations to promote universal respect for, observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms and the Commission is Ghana’s constitutional body to investigate these Human Rights violations and make appropriate recommendations.

It is sad that after two years of this complaint, CHRAJ has not brought out and publish its findings and recommendations on the matter. We believe that such slow responses to victims of military brutality account for the continuous abuses and violations in the country.

We look forward to receiving a favourable response from the Commission.

Yours faithfully,

CAROLINE GALLAGHER

International Coordinator – YoHRA

Source: Myjoyonline.com