Ejura shooting: Gyampo slams ‘ignorant’, ‘unprofessional’ soldiers

A professor at the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana, Yaw Gyampo, has blamed the mode of recruitment and training of security personnel in the country for the “ignorant and unprofessional soldiers who went to kill two more human beings” at Ejura during a youth protest over the murder of their colleague and #FixTheCountry campaigner Ibrahim ‘Kaaka’ Mohammed.

Four other protesters also got injured in the clash between the demonstrators and the security personnel.

Reacting to this development, Prof Gyampo noted that regimes would continue to suffer even more monumental embarrassments from unprofessional security forces, so long as recruitments into these agencies are politicised and based not on meritocracy.

He quizzed: “Who squats to shoot when demonstrations are ongoing? What was he aiming at? Human being or ‘beela’? Is that how to shoot to disperse? How was this soldier recruited? Who hired him? Who trained him?

“Are Ghanaian demonstrators immune to tear-gas? How about the hot water cannons and rubber bullets?

Prof Gyampo noted that “the kind of unbridled hawkish-intolerance exhibited by some elements within regimes and the childish manner with which our security agencies act in dealing with demonstrators, constitute a severe blot on the maturation of our democratisation process.”

He called on the government to fire some security heads to send a certain signal that would compel and elicit highly professional conduct of the security agencies when it comes to crowd management and dealing with demonstrators.

He also suggested that the government sends top security brass to school again for them to be socialized in the dogmas of the kind of relational competence they need, to talk agitators out of demonstration, if need be, “rather than the very cheap and democratically infantile way of quickly running to court, to seek an injunction. This only annoys and presents a needless potential recipe for revolt.”

Below is the full statement from Prof Gyampo:

1. The killing of Kaaka Mohammed is unfortunate and regrettable. My condolence to the family and may his soul Rest In Peace. But quickly, some have started pointing accusing fingers at the current regime with others expressing the hope that this shouldn’t be state-sponsored. This is also not too good, as it would not allow proper investigations to be undertaken.

2. Looking at the official government responses to the “Fix The Country”, agitation, I doubt whether this killing may be sanctioned by the state, even though I am also very much aware that, in our kind of nauseating politics, everything may be possible, including turning a man into a woman and vice versa. Government met the agitators to try and calm them down. Later, the agitations compelled, at least, two pressers to explain what the government is doing to fix the country.

3. But of course, there are the hawks within the regime, who demonstrated intolerance by calling the bluff of the agitators and asking them to first fix themselves. Then, we have our Police Service that typically tried to frustrate the intentions of the agitators to demonstrate, using very nonsensical explanations of Covid as basis, when they could not prevent or disperse the mammoth crowd at Sir John’s funeral. These things make any attempt to link the state to abuses, including murder of an agitator, easy and plausible, even though scepticisms can be entertained because of the absence of watertight evidence.

4. We must also know, and not be oblivious of the fact that sometimes, our nasty and very dirty politics may push individuals outside government, to carry out such abuses, just for the purposes of deepening agitations and making governments unpopular. Again, there is no evidence to support this, in the case of Kaaka’s death. But as we analyze the situation, through the lenses of fairness and objectivity, we must do so broadly, to cover all probabilities.

5. For the ignorant and unprofessional soldiers who went to kill two more human beings, I won’t blame them too much. We must blame their mode of recruitment and training. Regimes would continue to suffer even more monumental embarrassments from unprofessional security forces, so long as recruitments into these agencies are politicized and based not on meritocracy.

6. I was part of the 2000 Mobrowa Struggle and I played an active role, sometimes as the “Divine Drummer” for our group. We saw the professional manner with which the police and the soldiers handled us even when they had to physically stop us for being unruly.

7. Who squats to shoot when demonstrations are ongoing? What was he aiming at? Human being or “beela”? Is that how to shoot to disperse? How was this soldier recruited? Who hired him? Who trained him? He is indeed a square peg in a round hole, wearing a military camouflage attire.https://googleads.g.doubleclick.net/pagead/ads?client=ca-pub-4549410436183225&output=html&h=250&slotname=4705176708&adk=1921530005&adf=2732832048&pi=t.ma~as.4705176708&w=300&lmt=1625061045&psa=1&format=300×250&url=https%3A%2F%2Fmobile.classfmonline.com%2Fnews%2Fgeneral%2FEjura-shooting-Gyampo-slams-ignorant-unprofessional-soldiers-25493&flash=0&wgl=1&dt=1625061043944&bpp=8&bdt=3306&idt=1447&shv=r20210628&ptt=9&saldr=aa&abxe=1&cookie=ID%3Daeb05f98c8a9b87f-221bcc1f4ac90054%3AT%3D1625060944%3ART%3D1625060944%3AS%3DALNI_MbJ-bVxK4bu6C_n0kzWE1dDa7v_qw&prev_fmts=0x0%2C300x250%2C300x250%2C300x250%2C300x250&nras=1&correlator=6048253253336&frm=20&pv=1&ga_vid=1551383403.1625060943&ga_sid=1625061045&ga_hid=267359655&ga_fc=0&u_tz=0&u_his=1&u_java=0&u_h=892&u_w=412&u_ah=892&u_aw=412&u_cd=24&u_nplug=0&u_nmime=0&adx=56&ady=5545&biw=412&bih=797&scr_x=0&scr_y=0&eid=21066434%2C31060956%2C31060474%2C31061661%2C31061420&oid=3&pvsid=2439178296619484&pem=641&ref=http%3A%2F%2Fm.facebook.com%2F&eae=0&fc=1920&brdim=0%2C0%2C0%2C0%2C412%2C0%2C412%2C797%2C412%2C797&vis=1&rsz=%7Co%7CEebr%7C&abl=NS&pfx=0&fu=0&bc=31&ifi=6&uci=a!6&btvi=4&fsb=1&xpc=hbazgARgeC&p=https%3A//mobile.classfmonline.com&dtd=1474

8. Elsewhere, I am touting our democratic credentials to some scholars and African leaders. But behind the scenes, they are pointing these abuses to contradict my claims about Ghana’s drive towards democratic maturity. The point is: the kind of unbridled hawkish-intolerance exhibited by some elements within regimes and the childish manner with which our security agencies act in dealing with demonstrators, constitute a severe blot on the maturation of our democratization process.

9. Are Ghanaian demonstrators immune to tear gas? How about the hot water cannons and rubber bullets? The government may want to fire some security heads to send a certain signal that would compel and elicit highly professional conduct of our security agencies when it comes to crowd management and dealing with demonstrators.

10. Government may also want to send top security brass to school again for them to be socialised in the dogmas of the kind of relational competence they need, to talk agitators out of the demonstration, if need be, rather than the very cheap and democratically infantile way of quickly running to court, to seek an injunction. This only annoys and presents a needless potential recipe for revolt.

11. The President may have to personally intervene to give the needed assurances, bring peace and finality to this impasse. The security agencies have lost credibility in the sight of the agitators and demonstrators. The near-docility of our Peace Council has also created a certain legitimacy deficit that may make the Council ineffective in intervening. Given these challenges, the President’s personal intervention may be helpful and this must be done in a timeous manner. Yaw Gyampo

A31, Prabiw

PAV Ansah Street

Saltpond &

Suro Nipa House

Kubease

Larteh/Akuapim