Wuogon Violence: IGP, Bryan Acheampong must resign – Nana Ato Dadzie
A former Chief of Staff, Nana Ato Dadzie has called for the resignation of the Inspector General of Police, Mr David Asante-Apeatu and the Minister of State in charge of National Security at the presidency, Mr Bryan Acheampong, over the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election shooting and violence which injured 16 members of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) at the residence of the party’s parliamentary candidate on Thursday, 31 January 2019.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, 5 February 2019, the former Senior UN Consultant on Political Transition, said: “The Minister of state for National Security, Hon. Bryan Acheampong, on the basis of his violation of Act 652, and his direction of the assault during the by-election under that guise, must immediately resign his office. He must cause the president no further embarrassment by waiting for the demand of his resignation to do so”.
Additionally, Mr Ato Dadzie said: “The Inspector General of Police, as a matter of personal honour and principle, must resign his office for entertaining the violation and abuse of his command by the intrusion of an unconstitutional paramilitary force. The transportation of the offending persons in official vehicles of the Ghana Police Service, and their display of branded gear of the same, reaffirms this demand. The same must be said of the sad spectacle of helplessness and the non-intervention of senior police officers at the scene”.
Mr Ato Dadzie is not the first to have called for the head of Mr Acheampong specifically.
The NDC’s Member of Parliament for Builsa South, Dr Clement Apaak, on Tuesday, also called for the resignation of the Minister, following the shooting by some National Security operatives which marred the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.
“I think the Minister in-charge of National Security should step down. If all the other members of the National Security Council were not aware that he had [deployed his boys to the election grounds] then he has acted as a renegade because there is a reason why we have a National Security Council,” Dr Apaak told Benjamin Akakpo on the Executive Breakfast Show (EBS) on Class91.3FM.
The Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram, Mr Sam George, was also assaulted in the melee.
Many civil society organisations and statesmen including President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, have condemned the act and called on the police to investigate the matter and bring the perpetrators to book.
Meanwhile, the IGP has expanded the committee tasked to investigate the violence to cover the professional as well as the criminal conduct of those involved in the incident.
The police also said it has taken note of concerns raised by the public, parliamentarians, statesmen and reputable organisations about the incident and that thorough investigation will be conducted in line with the ongoing transformation agenda of the police service, which is aimed at ensuring the highest professional standards in the Service.
Below is Nana Ato Dadzie’s full statement
Based on the public facts of the assaults at Ayawaso West Wuogon during the by-election on January 31st, 2019, I wish to place on record the following views on the ongoing public discourse:
1. The calls for a judicial commission of inquiry, though well-intentioned, may only serve a diversionary cause.
2. The Minister of State for National Security, Hon. Bryan Acheampong, on the basis of his admitted violation of Act 652, and his direction of the assaults during the by-election under that guise must immediately resign his Office. He must cause the President no further embarrassment by waiting for the demand of his resignation to do so.
3. The Inspector General of Police, as a matter of personal honour and principle, must resign his Office for entertaining the violation and abuse of his command by the intrusion of an unconstitutional paramilitary force. The transportation of the offending persons in official vehicles of the Ghana Police Service, and their display of branded gear of the same reaffirms this demand. The same must be said of the sad spectacle of the helplessness and non-intervention of senior police officers at the scene.
4. The unconstitutionality of the paramilitary force in question is beyond debate, and does not require any pronouncement of the Supreme Court of Ghana to affirm the same. It must be disbanded with immediate effect.
5. Holders of public office must remind themselves that immunity in Ghana today will not serve as protection from future prosecution at the International Criminal Court on the basis of human rights abuses and crimes against humanity.
6. The President of the Republic of Ghana must urgently and unequivocally condemn the events of January 31st, 2019 in order to restore public confidence of the citizenry in the constitutional order. I shall expand on these positions at a future time and in a more expansive format.
Nana Ato Dadzie, Former Senior U.N. Consultant on Political Transition, Former Chief of Staff at the Presidency.