The office of New Patriotic Party (NPP) flagbearer, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has refuted new US Ambassador to Ghana's claim that he was 'consulted' two weeks before the arrival of the two Guantanamo Bay detainees in Ghana.
In a statement signed by his Press Secretary, Eugene Arhin said, "For the avoidance of doubt, we would like to reiterate our earlier stated position that at no point during the transaction between the two governments was Nana Akufo-Addo consulted, and the facts of the matter speak clearly for themselves."
Ambassador Robert Jackson rejected suggestions that the presence of the two Guantanamo detainees could be a reason for the increased threat of terrorism in Ghana.
Speaking at his first media round a table dominated by issues relating to peace and security, Ambassador Jackson said Ghana and US security forces are set to have a series of training to prevent a terrorist threat.
He revealed that NPP flagbearer, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo was consulted two weeks before the arrival of the two detainees and Mr. Akuffo-Addo expressed reservation about the decision by the Mahama administration.
Also, Ambassador Jackson disclosed that he consulted the Catholic Bishops Conference, the [President of the National association of Charismatic and Christian Churches] and other civil society groups after the arrival of the detainees to explain the US position and collaboration with the Ghana government for the decision.
Below is the statement
AKUFO-ADDO WAS NEVER “CONSULTED” ABOUT TRANSFER OF GITMO-2 DETAINEES
The attention of the Office of Nana Akufo-Addo has been drawn to a news item on some online media portals and on social media to the effect that the 2016 presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party was “consulted” before, to quote the news item, “the infamous transfer of the two Guantanamo Bay detainees to Ghana.”
According to the story captioned “Nana Addo was consulted before GITMO 2 Transfer – US”, the new US Ambassador to Ghana, Robert Jackson, in a meeting with some editors on Friday, April 15, is alleged to have said that “the Foreign Minister and this Embassy consulted about informing other stakeholders and so we did talk to Akufo-Addo before the transfer happened.”
These statements by the Ambassador, therefore, create the impression that Nana Akufo-Addo was “consulted” and thereby had foreknowledge of the transfer of the Gitmo-2 detainees.
For the avoidance of doubt, we would like to reiterate our earlier stated position that at no point during the transaction between the two governments was Nana Akufo-Addo consulted, and the facts of the matter speak clearly for themselves.
On January 5, 2016, the Deputy Chief of Mission/Chargé d'Affaires of the US Embassy in Ghana, then acting as Chief of Mission, Melinda Tabler-Stone, called on Nana Akufo-Addo at his Nima residence to inform him, with the consent of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, about the impending arrival into the country of two ex-Guantanamo Bay detainees, Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al Dhuby, as a result of discussions between the US and Ghana governments. The day after this visit, on January 6, it was announced that these Guantanamo detainees had been admitted into Ghana upon the authority of the President of Ghana. It would appear that at the time Melinda Tabler-Stone spoke to Nana Akufo-Addo, the two Gitmo-2 detainees were either on their way to Ghana or had arrived in the country.
It would be an unusual use of English, in these circumstances, to suggest that Nana Akufo-Addo was consulted. At best, what can be said is that he was informed of the transaction as it was being implemented, in other words he was presented with a fait accompli, not a consultation.
These are the bare facts of this matter.
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