By-election: National Security as a Ministry deployed masked men, not me as a person - Bryan Acheampong ‘clarifies
Minister of State at the presidency in charge of National Security has denied news reports that claimed he has said he personally deployed the boys who caused mayhem during the Ayawaso Wuogon by election, stating that it was rather National Security Ministry that did the deployment; MyNewsGh.com has filed.
Taking his turn before the Emile Short Commission, Mr Bryan Acheampong stated that at no point did he personally take responsibility for their deployment because the truth is that he didn’t order them.
According to him, the security operatives were deployed by the office of national security and he was not even available at the time to have ordered the deployment.
In the aftermath of the Ayawaso by-election violence, Mr Bryan Acheampong had told our sister media outlet Citi that “It is not like they came from somewhere and they were just engaged. They were part of the setup that we deployed yesterday.”
There was a shooting incident near a La Bawaleshie polling centre that temporarily disrupted the polls.
Observers criticized the police presence as excessive and intimidating. There were also concerns raised over the inability to identify some of the men whose faces were covered with masks.
Mr. Acheampong said the deployment of security personnel described by onlookers as intimidating was “standard to all by-elections that I have been.”
“Every deployment is based on the information that you receive and so you deploy in preparedness for the information that you have. Whether they are in masks, they are in slippers, they are plain clothes, it doesn’t matter. You need to protect the public.”
But appearing before the Emile Short Commission, he said he was misconstrued, and that at no point did he use a personal pronoun.
“I have done three interviews on radio, and at all times, I used third-person pronouns. I never said I, and that is something that I am battling with … I have never said anywhere in the three interviews that I granted… I, at all times, mentioned the Ministry of National Security or the national security or we, I never said I have deployed men,” Mr Acheampong told the Commission.
“I am a minister of state in a ministry and if my Director of Operations tells me that they have deployed men, I am part of it, but I did not give the order that they should [deploy the masked men], that is why I used the words ‘we have’ because I know that it is my ministry that has deployed the men”. He added.