The New Patriotic Party (NPP), Member of Parliament for Dormaa West Constituency, has been connected to a violent incident in the Constituency, which has led to the burning of a pickup vehicle meant for COVID-19 operations, a motorbike and the death of one of his supporters, Kofi Labet.
Heavily-armed supporters of Ali Maiga Halidu, are reported to have engaged in sporadic shooting in the Constituency, intimidating people who wanted to register in the Electoral Commission’s mop up registration exercise started yesterday, Saturday, August 8.
The security team made up of soldiers and police officers on the ground maintaining law and order, were said to have been overpowered by Kofi Labet and his armed gang under the instruction of the MP.
The MP’s, driver, “Bugi”, was also seen in the Constituency, “shooting aimlessly”. Independent checks are that the MP fled the town when things got out of hand and reinforcement was called in to restore calm.
One other supporter of Ali Maiga Halidu, is said to be in critical condition having also suffered severe injury in one of his legs.
A statement from the National Democratic Congress (NDC) stated that “the NPP rebel group besieged the office of the Electoral Commission where the mop up exercise of the voter registration was taking place at dawn, ostensibly to manage the security of the place”.
The statement was signed by Stephen Azorba and Stephen Sarfo, Secretary and Communications Officer of NDC in the Dormaa West Constituency, respectively.
It said “the Military and other state security lost control of the situation and were prevented from maintaining law and order from the early hours of 8th August by these hoodlums, adding that “the violent activities of Hon. Ali Maiga Halidu, and his rebels in once peaceful and serene political environment has led to state of anarchy and pandemonium” in the Constituency.
There have been similar violent incidents in the Banda Constituency resulting the murder of a teacher trainee.
The Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam Constituency in the Central Region, led By Cassiel Ato Forson has also recorded violence between the opposition NDC and the ruling NPP which is hoping to dislodge the incumbent the NDC MP, a former Deputy Minister of Finance in the John Mahama administration.
Mavis Hawa Koomson, was also captured in a shooting incident in Kasoa in the Central Region, where she is the MP and a serving Minister of Special Initiatives in the Akufo-Addo government.
President Akufo-Addo is yet to heed to calls for her dismissal although she admitted pulling the gun and shooting claiming it was to deter some people who wanted to attack her. Three motorbikes were also burnt.
Below is the full statement issued on the incident….
For Immediate Release.
NPP MP AND HIS REBELS VIOLENCE LEADING TO DEATH OF KOFI LABET CONDEMNABLE.
The National Democratic Congress in Dormaa West Constituency is appalled with the impudence, violence and impunity that has characterised the voter registration exercise by the New Patriotic Party Member of Parliament, Hon. Ali Maiga Halidu and his rebel group which has led to the untimely death, Kofi Labet, an NPP member, who was mistakenly shot by the violence infested rebels with others sustaining various degrees of injuries.
The violent activities of Hon. Ali Maiga Halidu, and his rebels in once peaceful and serene political environment has led to state of anarchy and pandemonium.
The good people of Dormaa West, the security, Nananom , opinion leaders and faith based organizations have known no peace since the NPP and Ali Maiga took over the reigns of power in 2017, which the voter registration exercise is no exception.
These acts of lawlessness and outmost disrespectful for law and order by the NPP MP and his bunch of blood thirsty rebels with impunity and abuse of incumbency in the name of “our government is power”, reached it’s uncontrollable level on the 08/08/2020 leading the death of KOFI LABET.
The events and circumstances leading to this unfortunate and barbaric incident by the NPP hoodlums can be summarised as follows;
1. The NPP rebel group besieged the office of the Electoral Commission where the mop up exercise of the voter registration was taking place at dawn, ostensibly to manage the security of the place.
2.The Military and other state security lost control of the situation and were prevented from maintaining law and order from the early hours of 8th August by these hoodlums.
3.The NDC led by the Parliamentary Candidate and Constituency Chairman, Hon Vincent Oppong and Asamoah and Alhaji Seiba Abdullai, respectively, in consultation with leadership of the NDC decided not to allow the NDC members to go anywhere around the Electoral Commission’s office which had by then been taken over by NPP rebels in order to prevent any possible clash.
4.The NPP rebels under the instructions of the part’s youth organizer, Acquah Ibrahim, and two biological brothers of Hon Ali Maiga, under no provocation attacked and beat to pulp, one Chairman Seidu, an NDC branch chairman who is currently receiving treatment at Nkrankwanta District Hospital.
5.These uncivilised rebels attacked, Mr Charles Asante, an executive member of the NDC who was driving some few meters away from the EC’s office to purchase fuel into his car and smashing rear screen and other parts of his car.
6. These NPP hoodlums/rebels had secured all the entry points leading the E. C’s office, thus, assaulting or turning away any known NDC member from registering.
7. As at 2pm, no NDC member or supporter had been able to register and the only agent of the NDC had been prevented by the NPP agents and an E. C official by name, Amofa, from issuing any challenge form against supposed intruders as stipulated by the electoral laws after he had successfully challenged three people. It’s important to note that, the NDC, at this point had only one agent at the EC’s office, the deputy youth organizer of the NDC, Don James.
8. As a peace loving and law-abiding political party, the NDC approached and pleaded with the EC officials and security agencies to send the rebels from the EC’s office to provide fair and level playing field but these pleas yielded no results for six continuous hours.
9. In the late hours of the day, some NDC supporters moved to the other side of the road to the EC’s office, opposite where the NPP’s rebels were seated.
10. This move by NDC supporters infuriated the rebel group resulting in the driver of the MP, Bugi, who stormed out of the registration centre with top speed, only to return with sporadic shooting.
11.The harmless and unarmed NDC supporters were now at the mercy of this known notorious criminal, BUGI, driver of Ali Maiga, who was shooting aimlessly at NDC members, which resulted in one, Kwame Grutan, sustaining gunshot injuries and is currently relying on the mercies of God and Doctors at Sunyani Regional Hospital.
12. At this juncture, the security personnel led by the Police and Military responded with series of warning shots whiles the rebels led by Acquah Ibrahim and Bugi fired back at the security personnel.
13.These truant rebels in the course of the sporadic, footloose and fancy free shoot out at the NDC members unfortunately misfired and shot at one of their own, Kofi Labet , who died instantly.
May his soul rest in peace.
The NDC in the Dormaa West constituency wish to at this stage call Nananom, the Security Agencies, Opinion Leaders ,Local council of Churches and Civil Society Organizations to call the NPP Member of Parliament for Dormaa West Constituency and his loose rebel group to order before they destroy the peace we have been enjoying in the area.
The people of Dormaa West need good roads, electricity, schools, Hospitals, farm inputs from the failed Ali Maiga Halidu and the NPP but not Gun Shots and uncultured display of machoism.
Stephen Azorba .
(NDC Secretary Dormaa West)
( NDC Communication Officer Dormaa West)