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General News
“Kumepreko” shelved 1/21/2007
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Nana Akuffo Addo has explained Government’s silence over the May 11, 1995 “Kumepreko Demonstration” that claimed four lives and says pursuing the matter will be a waste of time.

According to Nana Addo, who offered the explanation when he called into Joy FM’s weekly programme, News File on Saturday, the prosecution of the bloody demonstration would not yield anything and believes the matter should be laid to rest.

“It was a decision taken in the public interest and I will stand by it today especially since the collation of evidence for this matter, it was obvious from the very beginning it was going to be a very difficult exercise. You have institutions, public institutions that were involved in the matter. Now in a different light of day you know what was going to happen because they were going to make every effort to try and suppress the embarrassing part of their own conduct and therefore make it difficult to have a fairer matter. When Attorney Generals take decisions like that then it is by no means an endorsement of impunity.”

The demonstration was led by a number of people, including politicians, who opposed the then NDC Government’s policy of introducing the Value Added Tax.

The peaceful march turned bloody when supporters of the then Government, led by members of the Association of Committees for the Defence of the Revolution (ACDR), forcefully organised a counter march and clashed with the “Kumepreko” protestors.

In the ensuing chaos, four people were left dead from gunshot wounds while countless others sustained varying degrees of injuries.

Some of the leaders of the “Kumepreko” march, including Nana Akuffo Addo, who were then in opposition, campaigned for state investigations into the confrontation to bring all culprits involved in the shooting to face the law.

The calls for the investigations and prosecution went unheeded, and many were those who expected the NPP Government to take up the matter on winning power from the NDC.

Nana Addo’s intervention in the radio programme also touched on the Wednesday, March 27, 2002 killing of the Ya-Na, Yakubu Andani II, King of Dagbon alongside many others and re-echoed Government’s call to anyone with evidence of the king’s killers to provide same.

He added that the circumstances under which the killing occurred made it difficult to determine the perpetrators and it was therefore wrong for anyone to assume that the killings were automatically murder.

Nana Addo said the Wuaku Commission that looked into all the matters involved in the Dagbon crisis, including whether there were military tanks involved, had difficulties in its work which reflected in contradictions in the report.

“When you look at the report, you see these contradictions. Yes, prosecute certain people. Those people are put before court, Yidana and Iddrisu Jahanfo, I put them before court. What was the evidence against them? They were seen to be holding parts of the body of the Ya-Na in Yendi and therefore there was the presumption that they killed him. That presumption was rebutted in the court. Yes they were holding the dead leg but there was no evidence that that therefore meant they were responsible for the death because that can happen, the person can be killed and people can come upon the body and dismember it. They are not necessarily those who killed the man”, he said.

The Ya-Na was killed in gruesome fashion with several others in Yendi. He had been on the throne for 28 years.

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