Editor-in-chief of the New Crusading Guide Newspaper, Kweku Baako Jnr has denied claims that he and organisers of the 1995 ‘Kume Preko’ have left victims of violent demonstration, dejected.
He said those critiquing him and partakers of the demonstration have no right to do so especially when they are not well informed about the situation.
Speaking on Peace FM’s morning show ‘Kokrokoo’, Mr Baako said organizers of the demonstration cannot be tasked to take responsibility for the victims.
He said investigations into the violence that occurred during the demonstration revealed that, the then government (Rawlings regime) and its sympathisers were the ones responsible for the murders because it was not in favour of the demonstration.
On May 11, 1995 Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and Kweku Baako led the famous “Kume Preko” demonstrations of the Alliance For Change (AFC), a broad-based political pressure group.
They mobilised thousands of people onto the streets of Ghana to protest the Value Added Tax (VAT) initiative which was being introduced by the government of Ghana under the then President Rawlings.
Some pundits in Ghana believe that this was instrumental in re-establishing the New Patriotic Party as more formidable force after Prof Adu Boahen.
The demonstration which was meant to be peaceful, degenerated into violence after people suspected to be acting on the orders of government shot through the crowd of demonstrators leading to several people being injured while others died.
A 14-year-old boy who was standing in front of his house was shot dead by a stray bullet during the violence that characterized the demonstration.
Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe’s book titled, “Never say die” The Autobiography OF A Ghanaian Statesman”, mentions Kwabena Asante 22, Jerry Opey 25 and Richard Aminga 43, as those who also lost their lives.
His family and several families alike who lost their loved ones were neglected. Those who were injured had no form of support from the government at the time.
In view of this, families of these victims have kicked against a similar demonstration which was staged by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and led by its 2016 flagbearer Akufo-Addo in Accra today to protest the Mahama-led administration’s failure to address the recent power crisis in the country.
They have been reported as saying that Kweku Baako, Akufo-Addo and the NPP government have neglected them after the criminal trial promised them by the government has not seen the light of day.
However, Mr Baako said the victims were not neglected.
He said he together with Dr Wreko Brobbey, have personally funded the hospital bills of some of the victims who were affected by the violence during the demonstration.
He admits that even though not much has been done to visit or provide any form of compensation for the family of the dead boy, it would be inappropriate to say that the rest of the people were neglected.
All efforts to get the people who perpetrated the crime have been unsuccessful although organizers of the demonstration provided enough evidence to show that the then Rawlings regime was responsible for the violence, he said.
He indicated that if people are bent of seeking justice for the victims then people who were indicted in a police report – which is available to him should be prosecuted, including all governments who have ruled during the period.
Litsen to a situational report intercepted by Kweku Baako on the violence
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