President won’t be stampeded to release Emile Short Commission report

President won’t be stampeded to release Emile Short Commission report
Source: Ghana||
Date: 12-04-2019 Time: 11:04:18:am
Emile Short chair of a three-member Commission of Inquiry[L] presents report to the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, [R]

Government has said it will not be stampeded into releasing a report of the Short Commission which investigated political violence during a by-election in Accra.

Deputy Attorney-General and Minister of Justice Jospeh Dindiok Kpemka maintained holding on to the report 29 days after it was submitted does not constitute an undue delay.

It is the opposition National Democratic Congress that has been calling on the government to release the report of the Commission which inquired into the bloody by-election in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency in Greater Accra region.

The NDC which boycotted sittings of the Commission called the non-publication of the report a “blatant disregard for the principles of transparency.”

And has insisted the “people of Ghana need to know the findings and recommendations”.

Emile Short 1

The President while receiving the report on March 15, 2019 assured the bulky document will be given “the greatest possible attention.”

Although governments usually issue a White Paper on Commission reports, accepting or rejecting Commission recommendations, the President signalled this may not be needed in the case of the Short Commission report.

A Deputy Attorney-General has, however, indicated a White Paper will be issued “at the appropriate time.”

Government, he said, is doing “due diligence” on the report and the President flouts no law in holding on to the report.

The Commission was chaired by former Commissioner of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Justice Emile Short, and includes law professor, Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu and former IGP Patrick Kwarteng Acheampong.

Ernest Kofi Abotsi was Secretary to the Commission.

The Commission began its probe on February 11, 2019 and submitted its report after 31 days.

In response to the violence that marred the by-election held January 31, 2019, the President set up the Commission, urged the two main political parties to disband political vigilante groups believed to have been behind the violence.

Not without criticisms, the President has also sent to Parliament a Bill criminalising the existence of such groups.