Panel for Ayawaso violence probe a roster of NPP affiliates – NDC
The National Democratic Congress has questioned the credibility of the persons impaneled by the president to probe the violence that characterized the Ayawasos West Wuogon by election last week.
Government on Wednesday set up the three-member commission of inquiry to look into the circumstances of, and establish the facts leading to the violent incident and to identify person(s) responsible for it.
Chaired by former commissioner of CHRAJ, Justice Emile Short, it has Prof. Henrietta Mensah-Bonsu and a former Inspector General of Police (IGP), Patrick K. Acheampong as members. Private legal practitioner Ernest Kofi Abotsi will serve as secretary to the Commission.
But the NDC in a statement Friday held the persons assigned to look into the incident are all aligned with the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in one way or the other.
The party said it was the expectation of the people that the President composed a “neutral” team but rather selected “a roster of former appointees of erstwhile NPP administrations”, some of who the NDC said are in “intimate relations with serving cabinet members.”
The statement signed by General Secretary Johnson Asiedu Nketia said the NDC doubts if any possible outcome will come from the work of the commission, which the party feared will do the bidding of President Nana Akufo-Addo.
For the NDC, it is uncertain whether the outcome of the work of the Commission will bring desired results of ensuring that perpetrators of the violence are brought to book.
“It is gratifying that the power of the people has – for once, under the present administration – prevailed over the caprices of the Executive. However, we remain skeptical about the seriousness with which justice will be pursued under the remit of an Emile Short Commission.”
The Commission’s findings, the NDC said, are bound to be a confirmation of the President’s description of the Ayawaso violence incident as an “isolated’ case.
“In any case, President Akufo-Addo has already prejudged the incident as ‘isolated’, as he has the outcome of the Commission. There is no way that this Commission of his favourites will come to any conclusions that contradicts his prior statements,” the statement said.
The party said Nana Akufo-Addo should have demanded the resignation of the Minister of State for National Security, Bryan Acheampong or the Inspector General of Police by now, but he has failed to do so.
In the NDC’s view, leaving these people in office leaves room for cover ups as they could tamper with evidence which would have been available for investigation.
“They remain in office and are evidently engaged in an active cover-up operation, including transfers of senior police investigators and deliberate obfuscation of the identities and whereabouts of the perpetrators of the violence in Ayawaso on January 31.
“The position of the NDC is very simple; This Emile Short Commission is a non-starter on the basis of its composition, obvious political colouring, and the President’s own track record.”
It said the party has already provided enough evidence in video form to enable authorities arrest perpetrators of the violent act, hence warned against any effort to shield the perpetrators.