James Agalga

The Minority Caucus in Parliament is demanding from President Nana Akufo-Addo, the immediate release of the Emile Short Commission Report of Enquiry on the Ayawaso West Wuogon bye-election.

The group says the release of the report could positively “influence the content of the Vigilantism and related offences bill” which is before Parliament.

The Minority made the demand at a press conference today at Parliament House.

Hon James Agalga, Minority Ranking Member on Defence and Interior, who addressed the press conference, disclosed that “notwithstanding the discretionary powers vested in the President in Article 280 (4) on the publication or otherwise of the report of the Commission of Enquiry, it will be misconceived for the President to seek refuge under the said article and refuse to release the report”.

The Emile Short Commission report deals directly with politically related violence and acts of political party Vigilantism hence a source material for Parliament before the passage of the bill, he added.

The Emile Short Commission of Inquiry has presented its report to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

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.

Source: Peacefmonline

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