Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei-Mensah says it was impossible to hold a Regional Security Council (REGSEC) meeting to strategise on how to restore peace during the protest by the youth in Ejura on June 29.
Testifying before the three-member committee investigating the Ejura disturbances, Mr. Osei-Mensah stated that a REGSEC meeting was not held because he was in a Regional Ministers meeting in Accra at the time of the incident.
“It was an impossibility – it was impossible to call for a strategic meeting, I was in a Regional Ministers’ meeting in Accra. If I had wanted to call for a meeting, the only possibility was through Zoom,” he explained.
Simon Osei-Mensah was responding to a question posed by a committee member on why military personnel were deployed to the scene of the incident.
The Regional Minister told the Committee that the law establishing the Security Council granted him such powers.
According to him, he did not call for the military to intimidate the people or worsen the situation but to quell the protest.
He said the intelligence he had, pointed to threats by the youth of Ejura to burn state and private property after the burial of social activist, Ibrahim Mohammed, also known as Kaaka.
“I could not jeopardise the many lives of the people of Ejura and the security agencies. I had no other option than to call in reinforcement from the military,” he said.
The Chairman of the Ashanti Regional Security Council bemoaned the political colouration given to incidents preceding the protest.
In his view, this fueled the chaos because of the passion Ghanaians attach to politics.
Two persons were killed and four others sustained life-threatening injuries during the protest by the youth of Ejura Sekyedumase, which was disrupted by security operatives on Tuesday, June 29.
The protesters were demonstrating against the killing of Ibrahim “Kaaka” Mohammed, a social activist and member of the #FixTheCountry movement, who was beaten to death. His suspected assailants have since been arrested and are being prosecuted.
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