Heavily armed military presence in Supreme Court room raises questions

The armed soldiers in and outside the Supreme Court The armed soldiers in and outside the Supreme Court

Rockson-Nelson Etse Kwami Dafeamekpor, the Member of Parliament of South Dayi, has questioned the deployment of heavily armed military officers in the Supreme Court room, following the hearing of the election petition.

Their presence paints a picture of a military political dispensation.

"So Soldiers have been deployed inside the Supreme Court during a trial? What at all is going on in this country?" He asked in a tweet.

The intimidating, have been seen in the courtroom, as well as the premises of the apex court, providing securing to the chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC) Jean Adukwei Mensa.

Some of them, have also been seen around her car.

There has been the involvement of soldiers lately in most national lives.

Last year, the men from the army deployed headquarters led by Major-General Oppong-Peprah, were involved in an incident at Dome Faase. They were sent to serve as land guards and ended up shooting and killing citizens, after the residents demanded they leave their land.

On January 6, this year, heavily armed soldiers invaded Parliament on the day of swearing in of the MPs elect, but till date no one in Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) has responded to questions as to who sent them into the Chamber.

They were led by Col Punamane, head of the President Akufo-Addo's military guards in the Jubilee House.

Again, during the 2020 election, Techiman South, witnessed the heavy presence of both military and police officers shooting and indeed, killing innocent civilians and, till date no one has given any explanation.

Currently there are reports of their involvement in illegal mining, in Tomtomkrom in the Ashanti Region and again no explanation just like the others, because the current military leadership is soaked in impunity, hence doesn't give explanation to the citizens about anything.

The apex court is currently hearing the election petition filed by the Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) John Dramani Mahama.

Mr Mahama, is asking the court to order a rerun of the 2020 presidential election, because in his view, no candidate polled the number of votes to be declared winner.

He rejected the declaration of President Nana Akufo-Addfo as the winner of the election last year.

In September 2020, Kwesi Pratt Jnr, the Managing Editor of the Insight, disclosed that a joint police and military team is guarding the residence of Jean Mensa and questioned why.

According to him, security operatives are using armoured vehicles to protect the EC boss.

"Last week I was coming home from town, late at night, there were barricades around her house; you can't drive in front of her house without being thoroughly searched and so on. What is it that has highlighted the security level of the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission?" he asked on the Alhaji and Alhaji show on Pan African TV broadcast on Sunday.

"What does National Security know that we don't know? In any case, why does she feel so frightened as to call for this level of security, and if this level of security is called for, then something must be happening," he noted.

Mr Pratt, also stated that he has never witnessed such protection for any Chairperson of the EC before, and stressed that "something is happening".

He further cautioned the Security authorities: "And today, I'm sending a very very clear warning to the security services. What happened at Ayawaso West Wuogon will never be allowed to happen again. In Ayawaso West Wuogon, after firing a few shots, injuring a few people and so on, people started scattering. The NDC even went to the extent of pulling out of the elections. I think that is history but I'm seeing things happening," he said.

He further added that, he had seen videos of civilians confronting 30 to 40 policemen armed to the teeth and disarming them.

"The Ghanaian population is no longer afraid of guns and bullets. What I am seeing convinces me that the people of Ghana are determined to ensure that nobody bullies them. The people of Ghana have come to the point where they realize that mass mobilization is an antidote to vigilantism,[…] reckless abuse of soldiers and policemen to the achievement of narrow partisan interests," unhappy Kwesi Pratt indicated.

Mr Pratt, warned further that anybody who tries that on December 7 will regret it.

"The use of violence and intimidation is not going to work on December 7, it will not work. We will not allow that to work. If at the end of the elections, the people of Ghana genuinely and truly want Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to continue in office, all of us will agree. The ballot will speak; The ballot will speak the voice of the people; The ballot must be allowed to say what the people want and we will respect that. If at the end of elections on December 7, the people of Ghana decide that the new president they want is John Dramani Mahama, let nobody dare change that," he warned.

Source: The Herald