The Emile Short Commission of Inquiry on Thursday presented its report to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at the Jubilee House in Accra.


The setting up of the Commission by the President on the 6th of February, 2019, was necessitated by the unfortunate riots that occurred at the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency bye-elections January 31, 2019, after the sudden death of the Member of Parliament for that Constituency, Emmanuel Kyeremanteng Agyarko.


At a short ceremony, President Akufo-Addo thanked the members of the Commission for offering their services to the people of Ghana and assured that the findings and recommendations would be given the utmost attention from the government.


He expressed confidence that the work of the Commission would bring closure to politically related violence (vigilantism) that has rocked the country in recent past.


He said the government would study the findings and recommendations of the report, and give its opinion if need be.


The Commission, chaired by the former Commissioner of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Justice Francis Emile Short, had Mrs. Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu, a distinguished Law Professor of international repute, and Mr. Patrick K. Acheampong, a former Inspector-General of Police as members. Mr. Ernest Kofi Abotsi, a Private Legal Practitioner, was the Secretary.


It was tasked to make a full, faithful and impartial inquiry into the circumstances of, and establish the facts leading to, the events and associated violence during the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election on January 31, 2019.


The Commission was to identify any person responsible for or who has been involved in the events, associated violence and injuries; and inquire into any matter, which the Commission considers incidental or reasonably related to the causes of the events and the associated violence and injuries.


It was mandated to submit its report within a month to the President giving reasons for its findings and recommendations, including appropriate sanctions if any.


President Akufo-Addo had roundly condemned the violence that characterised the early stages of the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election, especially at the La Bawaleshi Polling Centre, and described the incident as unfortunate and regrettable.


"I condemn it in no uncertain terms. A by-election should be a peaceful and happy event, no matter how competitive,” he said and tasked the Police Service to conduct speedy investigations into the matter and bring those culpable to book.


The Commission, in its public sittings, invited all persons connected to the incident and those who had knowledge of it.


Those who appeared before the Commission included the Inspector-General of Police, the National Security Minister, the Interior Minister, and the Commander of the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Unit of the Ghana Police Service.


A Member of Parliament who was assaulted by a security operative and some journalists who covered the event were also invited.  


Source: ISD (Rex Mainoo Yeboah)with additional files from GNA





Created: 15 March 2019
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