Four soldiers and an immigration officer are among 13 people who have been detained at Konongo in the Ashanti Region for allegedly participating in illegal operations at Mantin in the Bosome-Freho District of the Ashanti Region. On Friday, they were taken into custody by National Security Operatives with the help of the Konongo Divisional Police Command along with a Chinese citizen they had already taken into custody before being approached.
The immigration officer was identified as Assistant Immigration Control Officer Emmanuel Acheampong, while the four soldiers have been named as Warrant Officer (WO) Boateng, Corporal Otibu Dacosta, Private Bruce Afful, and L. S. Asomay. Furthermore, the civilians including those in military uniforms were, Bernard Nyarko, Nana Amoako Arthur, Odei Michael, Nana Danquah, Prince Boakye, Asare Francis, Appiah Francis, Darkey Michael, Atitsogbe Bismark and Eric Addo.
According to a source at the National Security headquarters in Accra, during a search three locally made single barrel firearms, one pump action rifle, three knives, two heavy duty batteries, one pepper spray, a mock taser, and cash worth GH18,870.00 were taken from the suspects. The source added that all of the suspects, with the exception of the GIS officer and the Chinese national, who were turned over to GIS Headquarters in Kumasi, had been brought to Kumasi and were presently being held in close custody at 4 Infantry Battalion and Headquarters Central Command guardrooms.
It was highlighted that despite efforts by the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) to curtail the problem, the use of military uniforms by civilians and the participation of troops in unauthorized activities had become commonplace in recent years. According to the source, “it is anticipated that a comprehensive investigation into the group’s activities will be conducted and disciplinary action will be taken against them if found liable to serve as deterrence to others.”
In the meantime, the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) said in a statement released yesterday that it had taken note of the widely reported incident in which a group of people—including an immigration officer—were allegedly terrorizing miners in mining communities in the Ashanti Region. The statement was signed by the GIS’s chief superintendent of immigration, Michael Amoako-Atta, head of public affairs. The officer whose military identity card went viral on social media had been recognized, according to the statement, and was collaborating with inquiries.
“The GIS wishes to dissociate itself from the misconduct of the said officer if investigations prove that he was involved in the incident. Management wishes to assure the general public that investigations has begun and the said officer or any other person involved in the incident will not be spared if found guilty,” the statement stressed.