The government has described “unthinkable”, former President John Mahama’s recent meeting with the diplomatic community at which he screened some videos he purported to be acts of violence captured by the media at La-Bawaleshie during the 31 January 2019 Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.
At a media briefing in Koforidua, Eastern Region, on Sunday, 17 February 2019, Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah accused Mr Mahama of prejudging the work of the Short Commission of Inquiry set by President Nana Akufo-Addo to probe the by-election shooting by some national security operatives at the private residence of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) which resulted in 16 supporters sustaining gun wounds.
”First, this is an unfortunate act by a former president of the republic, as it is prejudicial to the work of the commission. As one who has occupied the highest office of the land, it is unthinkable that he will make pronouncements that seek to prejudice or undermine the work of a fact-finding commission, at a meeting where he has invited diplomats so to do.
“We do not believe that in the various countries where the diplomats come from, this prejudicial undermining conduct will be countenanced”, Mr Oppong Nkrumah said.
At the meeting with the diplomats, Mr Mahama screened two sets of videos; one being a video captured by one of the media houses in Accra, the content of which the Short Commission is probing and a second set of two videos which the former president said contained evidence that the balaclava-clad national security operatives who fired at the NDC supporters during the by-election were vigilantes of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) who not only provided security for their party’s candidate on the day of the poll, but also performed a war dance at the funeral of the late MP whose death necessitated the by-poll.
According to Mr Nkrumah, the Akufo-Addo government will this week be writing to the diplomatic community to put them on notice that second set of videos and their accompanying narratives as told them by Mr Mahama are false and designed at tarnish Ghana’s hard-won reputation in the eyes of the international community.
“Indeed, that video is a video of policemen who had attended a funeral of a fellow police officer and had nothing to do with the late Agyarko’s funeral”, Mr Nkrumah clarified.
“Mr Mahama’s presentation to the diplomats of that video as evidence of a said NPP vigilante group involved in the Ayawaso West Wougon incident is false and should be treated as such. The family of Mr Agyarko has even had cause to deny this and the government will bring this formally to the attention of the diplomats. Ghana is regaining its place in the comity of nations and her government will allow no person, for whatever parochial interest, to undercut our collective gains”, Mr Nkrumah warned.