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Catholic Bishop’s Conference calls for independent probe into Wa military brutality

The Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC) has called for an independent investigation into the assault on Wa residents by military personnel on Thursday.

In its press statement, President, Most Rev. Philip Naameh explained that the country has, on several occasions, failed to probe similar incidents and fish out the perpetrators despite receiving assurances from authorities.

“Similar to previous incidents of military brutalities and unprofessional behaviour on the part of some officers of the Ghana Armed Forces, the Military High Command has issued a statement decrying the behaviour of their men and has promised an internal investigation and disciplinary action against the perpetrators.

“We commend the High Command for the assurance that appropriate sanctions will be handed out to any person(s) found culpable after a full-scale investigation. We, however, call for an independent investigation based on previous events that are still fresh in the minds of all Ghanaians where investigations into similar incidents at Nsuaprem, Manso Totokrom. Ashaiman and Kintampo yielded nothing,” its July 2 communiqué stated.

According to the Bishops’ Conference, the unprofessional behavior exhibited by some personnel of the Military, such as the Ejura clash and Wa brutality, are eroding the faith and hope citizens have in the security system of the country.

“Barely 72 hours after we issued a statement to condemn the killing of two young men at Ejura by some military men, we are horrified to see videos of brutalities and inhumane treatments meted out to innocent citizens in the Upper West Regional Capital, Wa, by a group of military men.

“We reiterate our earlier position that citizens are gradually losing trust in the ability of our security agencies to handle cases involving one of their own effectively and competently to the satisfaction of all,” portions of its press statement read.

On Thursday, July 1, residents of Wa were subjected to maltreatment by soldiers from the 10 Mechanized Battalion Infantry who claimed a mobile belonging to an officer was stolen in the community.

The military officers, numbering over 50, moved out of the barracks to the Tindaamba Crescent and started beating some of the residents.

Out of the 12 persons abused, two have been admitted at the Wa Municipal hospital where they are currently receiving treatment.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Catholic Bishop’s Conference has also called out President Akufo-Addo to ensure that investigations are carried out swiftly devoid of any political interference to ensure justice is served.

“We cannot continue to live in fear as a people due to the unprofessional behaviour of some miscreants belonging to our security forces and so demand that our laws be made to work. It is not enough to say that we will do better,” it added.

The Bishops’ Conference also commiserated with the affected families adding that, “we pray for healing for those undergoing treatment at the hospital.”

Source: Ghana News

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