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Fennec Okyere’s death: Shatta Wale’s claim to bring justice?

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lawsuit, Shatta Wale, Newscenta, Bulldog, Fennec Okyere, apology, damages, retraction,
Shatta, Okyere, Bulldog. Photo: Various

The Ghana Police Service says Ghanaian dancehall artiste Shatta Wale is currently cooperating with them following recent revelations about the death of artiste manager, Fennec Okyere.

Shatta Wale, in a recent feud with his former manager, Lawrence Nana Asiamah Hanson popularly called Bulldog-CEO of Bull Haus Entertainment alleged that the latter had a role to play in the death of Fennec Okyere.

Fennec Okyere murdered on March 13, 2014

Okyere, who was the manager of the controversial musician, Kwaw Kese, was killed at his Manet Gardens residence on the Spintex Road, Accra on Thursday, March 13 by unknown assailants.

He died at age 31.

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Fennec Okyere buried on Saturday, April 26, 2014

Fennec was laid to rest after a funeral service at the forecourt of the Trade Fair Centre, LA-Accra on Saturday, April 26, 2014.

Shatta Wale cooperating with police

A statement signed by Grace Ansah-Akrofi, Chief Superintendent of Police, Director of Public Affairs, said Shatta Wale was cooperating with the police on the issue.

“The Police would like to put on record that the recently established Cold Case Unit, has been working for months on all unresolved murder cases, including that of Fennec Okyere, with the support of the affected families.

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“This new development from Shatta Wale is therefore going to complement our ongoing investigation, ” the statement said.

The Police thanked the families affected for working with the Cold Case Unit on this issue, saying that they will work relentlessly to bring closure to affected families.

Bulldog arrested Thursday, May 15, 2014

It will be recalled that Bulldog was on Thursday, May 15, 2014, arrested in Kokomlemle, a suburb of Accra, as a prime suspect in the death of Okyere.

Alleged threatening messages and phone calls

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According to the police, his arrest was based on threatening messages and phone calls Bulldog allegedly placed to the deceased whilst alive.

Charges preferred against Bulldog

He was therefore charged with conspiracy to commit murder and committing murder.

Bulldog in court on Monday, May 19, 2014

Bulldog made his first appearance in court on Monday, May 19, and was remanded into police custody to appear in court on June 2.

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The prosecution asked permission to remand the suspect to enable the police continue with their investigations.

According to the prosecution, his detention would go a long way to assist the police’s investigations due to the sensitive nature of the case.

But, lawyer for Bulldog, Gary Nimako objected to calls for his client to be remanded in police custody.

He had argued that the charges leveled against his client – conspiracy to commit murder and committing murder – cannot hold because the prosecution has not been able to link his client to Fennec’s murder.

Bulldog granted bail on May 27, 2014

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A Human Rights Court on Tuesday, May 27, 2014 granted Bulldog bail on the basis that the facts as the police presented and upon which they were holding him are “speculative” and do not link him to the charges that have been preferred against him.

On that basis, the court ruled that Bulldog deserves his freedom and should not have been held even for a day.
He was released from custody on May 28, 2014.

 

 

 

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Judge flees after alleged violent attack on his residence

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Judge flees, Newscenta, Bolgatanga, Upper East, attack on residence,

Justice Alexander Graham, a Bolgatanga High Court Judge has allegedly fled the Upper East Region after his residence was allegedly attacked by unknown persons on Wednesday, March 15, 2023.

The Ghana News Agency gathered that some unknown persons pelted stones at his house which prompted the security of the judge to call for reinforcement.

The attackers immediately left the scene after sensing the arrival of the reinforcement team, comprising the Ghana Police Service and the military.

On Thursday, March 16, 2023, the acting Supervising High Court Judge of the region was escorted out of the region to Accra.

The reason for the attack is currently unknown, however, it came a few days after the judge presiding over cases in the High Court Two in Bolgatanga convicted two people for contempt of court.

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The two are Naab Nyakora Maantii, the Divisional Chief of Baare and Mr Richard Sunday Yinbil, Secretary of Talensi Traditional Council.

It has been reported that the two led a delegation sent by Tongraan Kugbilsong Nanlebegtang, Paramount Chief of the Talensi Traditional Area to request a private meeting with Justice Graham to discuss cases filed from the Traditional Area and were pending before the court the judge was presiding over.

The Judge stormed out of his chambers where the delegation met him and ordered the security in the courtroom to arrest them and charge them for contempt.

The accused pleaded guilty and were subsequently convicted on their own plea.

The Judge described the action from the Palace as an attempt to influence his decision and entrap him and asked them to sign a bond of good behaviour with the Upper East Regional Police Command for a period of six months following several appeals from lawyers in the court when the Judge initially wanted to jail the two persons.

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The court did not sit on Thursday and Friday as a result of the attack on the Judge which left persons who had cases to be heard stranded after waiting for several hours.

Meanwhile, a statement from the Talensi Traditional Council and signed by Naab Tampelsong Kun Gaadzom, Divisional Chief of Tindongo, admitted to sending two of its members to Justice Graham to invite him to the Palace for a meeting but refuted claims of influence and entrapment.

The statement noted that the Judge had on several occasions referred cases to the Talensi Traditional Council for resolution and therefore, the request was for the Judge to help the Traditional Council resolve land litigation issues in the area according to its Customary Land Secretariat.

At a press conference, the National Patriots Against Injustice and Corruption Ghana (NAPAIC-Ghana), described the attack on the Judge as “barbaric, uncalled for and shameful” and urged the Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah to as matter of urgency, strengthen security to protect Justice Graham, his family and property.

Mr Zumah Tii-roug, Member and Recorder of NAPAIC, who spoke at the press conference, urged the security agencies to conduct a search and investigation to bring perpetrators of the crime to book to serve as deterrent to others.

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“There are fears in the region that Justice Alexander Graham would be transferred from the region in the wake of the attack, and this would serve as a bad precedent should he be transferred.

This is so because anytime judgment would be given against litigants, they would resort to this kind of attack on the judge in the hope that the judge would be transferred.

GNA

 

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Ashaiman brutalities: CDD, OccupyGhana want soldiers punished

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Ashaiman brutalities, Newscenta, CDD, OccupyGhana, sanctions, soldiers,

Two Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) want all military personnel involved in the brutalities at Ashaiman following the murder of the soldier, Trooper Imoro Sheriff, to face the law.

In separate statements OccupyGhana and Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD Ghana), said the brutal force used by military personnel left many unsuspecting civilian residents of Ashaiman with various degrees of injuries.

OccupyGhana

OccupyGhana described the actions of the Military as “barbaric, totally uncalled for, absolutely unconstitutional and unlawful”.

It said the constitution guaranteed inviolable dignity to all Ghanaians, even if suspected to have committed a crime and that no Ghanaian should be subjected to “torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment or any other condition that detracts or is likely to detract from [our] dignity and worth as human beings”.

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The pressure group therefore, stated that as the accused persons faced the law, the Military personnel involved and any officer who authorised those actions against residents of Ashaiman must be tried, and officers and supervisors who endorsed the acts after they happened must also resign.

OccupyGhana also asked the Military High Command to apologise to everyone subjected to violations and that the State needed to compensate affected persons.

“There is, therefore, no justification for the pain, suffering and torture that the soldiers visited on clearly innocent people.

“Any powers of arrest that the Military may claim to have, is no different from the arrest powers of any citizen of this country, as regulated by the Constitution,” it added.

It said the rights of Ashaiman residents had been gravely violated as the Military itself appeared to have filmed and shared videos as they subjected citizens to “unspeakable indignities, making an absolute and total a farce of what our Constitution represents and what they see their role in the Ghanaian society as. With these barbaric acts, they made themselves, judge, jury and executioner, and a very terrible one at that”

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“The Constitution demands ‘reasonable suspicion’ that the specific person arrested has committed an offence. A mass swoop that occurs days after an offence, and detains as many as 184 people cannot be based on any suspicion that each of them had committed the offence. And even if any such suspicion arguably existed, it would be grossly unreasonable, unwarranted and perverse. Thus, the military unjustifiably violated the constitutional right to due process of every person they detained,” the statement noted.

It said the press statement issued by the Department of Public Relations of the Military on March 7, 2023, was an “absurd justification” of the actions of the officers and had been exposed by the facts provided by the police as false on March 12, 2023, that the unfortunate death resulted from a suspected robbery attempt.

The Pressure Group also said the suspected robbery could have happened in any part of the country and to any citizen and that the Military would not have intervened.

OccupyGhana asked the Military to acknowledge its mandate as all other security agencies to protect the people of Ghana and not to turn on them.

It extended its condolences to the family and loved ones of the murdered military officer.

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CDD-Ghana appalled

CDD said the brutal force used by military personnel in their “intelligence-led operation” left many unsuspecting civilian residents of Ashaiman with various degrees of injuries.

It said others were confined to their homes for hours in fear of falling victim to the unprofessional conduct of the military personnel.

It noted that about 184 persons were arrested during this exercise by the military; adding that some were tortured while others were subjected to all kinds of inhumane treatment by the military.

“We are further deeply dismayed by the revelation that this flagrantly unprofessional and barbaric conduct by military personnel was sanctioned by the military hierarchy and received justification and approval not only from the Military High Command, but also from a Deputy Minister of Defence, Kwaku Amankwa Manu, who as a member of the civilian government must exercise oversight and control over the conduct and operations of the armed forces.

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“However dastardly, the alleged killing of a military officer and its investigation is a matter of internal security and criminal law enforcement which is the exclusive mandate of the Ghana Police Service, and not the Ghana Armed Forces.”

It said the Ghana Armed Forces should not be free to unilaterally use arms, military accouterments and other taxpayer/public funded resources entrusted to their care for the defense of the nation to avenge a crime committed against one of their own.

The statement said resorting to militarized self-help of this nature for criminal acts committed against individual military personnel undermines the rule of law and creates uneasiness among the civilian population.

It said the fact that the swoop at Ashaiman was not an isolated incident, it also gave cause for great concern.

It said on many occasions in the past, some officers of the Ghana Armed Forces have resorted to acts of militarized self-help in various parts of the country; terrorizing unsuspecting civilians and leaving many injured.

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It said for instance, on or about July 1, 2021, a group of military men were reported to have assaulted some civilians in Wa in the Upper West Region, after a phone belonging to one of the military men was allegedly stolen in the area.

“Unfortunately, it appears the punishment meted out to soldiers has prevented these acts from re-occurring.

“We commend the efforts of the Ghana Police Service in tracking down the perpetrators of this dastardly act.”

The statement said however, in the broader spirit of exercising democratic control over the operations and conduct of the armed forces, CDD Ghana urged Parliament to investigate the incident; cause sanctions to be imposed on all persons implicated in the swoop at Ashaiman and ensure that justice was done.

It said CDD Ghana was also urging all persons directly affected by the conduct of the military personnel at Ashaiman to seek redress at the courts.

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The statement said the Executive branch must also be advised that failing to condemn and sanction the military officers implicated in the episode was a slippery slope toward a generalized state of lawlessness and anarchy.

“We must remember that under a democratically-elected civilian government, such brutal and unprofessional conduct of soldiers characteristic of military regimes in the past, cannot be encouraged and must never be repeated.”

The Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) is an independent, nongovernmental, and not-for-profit organization that promotes and supports, through research, education, advocacy, and policy engagement, efforts to build democracy, good governance, and inclusive development in Ghana and throughout Africa.

CDD-Ghana’s research outputs and other products are available to and used by governmental and nongovernmental agencies, Africa regional bodies, development partners as well as researchers and the public.

Soldiers invade Ashaiman-Taifa

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Soldiers invaded Ashaiman-Taifa to avenge the death of their colleague Trooper Imoro Sherrif who was killed by ‘thugs’ in the area.

Armoured tanks, 2 military helicopters provided air support

The soldiers invaded the community with military vehicles including armoured tanks, and two helicopters providing air support.

Soldiers attacked residents

The heavily armed soldiers started attacking residents, preventing them from even stepping out of their homes.

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Flogging of residents

In some videos on social media, a young man is heard screaming amid sounds of flogging.

Residents forced to roll in the mud

In other visuals, some residents were forced to roll on the ground in the muddy puddles created by the early morning rains.

Crawl on bellies

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Videos circulating on the internet depict civilians being instructed to lie on the ground and crawl using their bellies, while others were subjected to whipping.

According to reports, persons who flout the military’s directives were flogged and manhandled.

Fear and panic

The soldiers have terrorized the local populace, causing fear and panic, and have physically assaulted residents in the neighbourhood.

In defence of brutalities, Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) in a statement described it as an operation in parts of Ashaiman to swoop in a man-hunt for some criminals and not for vengeance.

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Police investigations revealed that pn March 4, 2023, the police received information on a male adult found lying dead at Ashaiman Taifa.

A team of Police Officers upon reaching the place retrieved a blood-stained knife, a backpack containing an iPad, Ghana Card, National Health Insurance Service (NHIS) card, and a military uniform belonging to the victim who was a soldier with the Third Battalion of Infantry at Sunyani.

Investigations revealed that the slain soldier went to visit his female friend at Ashiaman Newtown at about 10:30pm on March 03, and left for his home at about 1:30am on March 04, but was attacked by Samuel Tetteh, and Abubakar Sadick, at Ashaiman-Taifa with the purpose of stealing his mobile phone.

He added that the two succeeded in stabbing him and robbed him of his iPhone, indicating that the stolen phone was subsequently sold to Ibrahim for GH₵‎300 who re-sold it to Safianu Musah for GH₵‎ 350.

The Prosecution added that Safianu claimed to have also sold the phone to Yussif Mohammed and Gafaru Abdul Karim.

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Senyo Hosi receives national award for role in GIDC execution

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Senyo Hosi, Newscenta, GIDC, National Award, COVID-19 fight, GCPSF,

Finance and Economic Policy Analyst and Entrepreneur, Senyo Hosi who was the Managing Trustee of the Ghana COVID-19 Private Sector Fund has received a national award for his contribution in the fight against COVID-19.

He is part of individuals, institutions and partners who have been awarded by the State at the National Honours and Awards 2023 for distinguishing themselves in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo decorated Mr Hosi with the award at a ceremony in Accra.

Mr Hosi spearheaded the construction the first ever 100-bed capacity Ghana Infectious Disease Centre (GIDC) for treatment and management of COVID-19 and other infectious.

Located at the Ga East Municipal Hospital at Kwabenya-Atomic, it is a private-sector-initiated and executed project funded through the Ghana COVID-19 Private Sector Fund and built by a combined military-civilian professionals, skilled and unskilled labourers.

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Covid-19 Private Sector Fund targets GH¢100m

The Ghana Covid-19 Private Sector Fund set out to raise a minimum of GH¢100 million, was established by a number of private businesses drawn from diverse sectors in the country, to support government’s efforts to conquer the coronavirus pandemic.

$7.5m cost

The project, which emerged as a result of the private sector’s response to the call by President Akufo-Addo on all Ghanaians to rally support behind the government to combat the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, was constructed within 67 days at the cost of $7.5 million.

3 leaders of the project

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The GCPSF, spearheaded by national icons Messrs Hosi, former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors (CBOD) and Managing Trustee, Edward Effah, Board Chairman of Fidelity Bank, and Dr. Anthony Oteng-Gyasi, Chairman of Tropical Cable and Conductor Limited, Trsutee, among others, from April, the early stages of COVID-19 in Ghana, conceptualized the project and with the involvement of the relevant stakeholders came out with the designs and project estimates cost.

Donations from patriotic Ghanaians and corporate bodies 

Following this, the Fund was set up and saw many patriotic Ghanaians and corporate bodies donating from as little as sixty pesewas to raise the needed funds for the project which has components such as laboratories, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), general wards, among others.

536 patriotic and industrious Ghanaians made donations

The funds were donated by 536 patriotic and industrious Ghanaians to fund the project to support government’s efforts in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.

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$5.5m cash/materials, $2m free services

This is made up of $5.5 million in cash and materials as well as $2 million in free services offered by various professionals, groups and tax waivers.

Between 66 pesewas and GH¢10m donated

Corporate entities and individuals contributed between 66 pesewas and GH¢10 million to the Ghana COVID-19 Private Sector Fund.

Components of the facility

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The first ever GIDC comprised a level three Biomedical laboratory, a 21-bed Intensive Care Unit, a dispensary, a triage unit, waiting areas, nurses station, VIP and general wards and a medical gas house, was constructed through the collaboration of civilian and military engineers, planners and architects within three months.

Designers of the facility

The structure was designed jointly by the Built Environment Professionals made up of the Ghana Institute of Architects, Engineers, Surveyors and Planners, the Ghana Armed Forces and Specialists Consultants from the Ministry of Health and the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research.

Various design enhancements requested by GMA

Various design enhancements were done in response to additional requests by the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) and other infectious disease clinicians and biomedical scientists.

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Various units

The enhancements include the incorporation of a level 2.5 scalable to a level 3 biomedical laboratory, in consultation with officials from Noguchi Memorial Institute of Medical Research, the addition of a 21-bed intensive care unit and total insulation of the centre for energy efficiency since the facility will be required to be climatically controlled throughout its use.

Another one is the application of ultra-violet radiation treatment of air entering and exiting the facility to ensure no contaminated air exits the building.

President Akufo-Addo cut sod on April 17, 2020

President Akufo-Addo on April 17, 2020, cut the sod for the construction of the Ghana Infectious Disease Centre.

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Relief services to individuals and families

The fund extended relief services to individuals and families who were hardest hit by the pandemic, undertake sensitisation programmes and also support institutions at the forefront of the fight.

Projects of Ghana Covid-19 Private Sector Fund

Since its establishment, the fund embarked on a number of projects in conformity with its agenda.

‘Feed a Kayayo Project’

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Through one of its initiatives, dubbed ‘Feed A Kayayo Project’, more than 140,000 free hot meals have been served to persons affected by the lockdown in Accra and Kumasi.

Supply of PPE

Under its project dubbed ‘Protect and Resource the Frontline,’ the fund has also supplied tertiary care personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Ga East Municipal Hospital, which is the primary treatment centre for Covid-19 patients.

The Managing Director of Tropical Cable and Conductor Limited is the Chairman of the team, with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Chamber Bulk Oil Distributors, Mr Senyo Kwasi Hosi, as the Managing Trustee of the fund.

Other members of the management team are the Chairman of Fidelity Bank Ghana Ltd, Mr Edward Effah; a Director, CH Group, Mr Kwaku Bediako; the CEO, Woodfield Energy Resources Ltd, Mr John Taylor; the Chairman of Wilkins Engineering Ltd, Mr Omane Frimpong, and the Managing Director of Bamson Group, Mr Kwame Ofosu Bamfo.

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The rest are the Group Chairman of Kasapreko, Mr Kwabena Adjei; the Chairman of Svani Group Ltd, Mr Thomas Svanikier; the CEO of the Multimedia Group Ltd, Mr Kwasi Twum, and a Commissioner at the Ghana Revenue Authority, Ms Julie Essiam.

Similar facilities planned for Kumasi, Takoradi and Tamale

It is expected that the three ecological zones, that’s the Coastal, Middle Belt and Northern would have similar facilities, and would be constructed in Takoradi, Kumasi and Tamale respectively.

 

 

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