The death of a man allegedly assaulted by police officers in a lockdown operation has sparked widespread anger among residents of Konkole, a popular neighbourhood near Trede in Ghana’s Ashanti region.
An encounter with the yet-to-be identified officers on Monday night, left Kwabena Gideon, 32, on life support at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH), before he died.
Witnesses say an attempt to enforce a partial lockdown directive led to the arrest of the deceased who was standing a few meters away from his home.
“He had just returned from work when the incident happened. They [the Police] alleged he had been arrested for possessing ‘weed’. He was later handcuffed, molested, and beaten mercilessly by the officers after a search”, a witness told Dailymailgh.com.
“We later realised from his family that the police had rushed him to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) after suffering severe injuries in the head and other body parts”, the witness further narrated.
Mother demands justice
The mother of the deceased is grieving her departed son. She is calling on authorities to investigate the matter and bring the officers to justice.
“My son, who was at the Kotwi Clinic was later referred to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital when his condition got worse; all the bills were footed by the policemen who were now begging me to remain quiet over the matter or they lose their jobs, I don’t know their names but I can identify each of them; they said they are stationed at the central police station,” she told Kumasi-based Otec FM on Wednesday during a phone interview.
“I am calling on authorities to bring the officers to book. I have lost a breadwinner and I won’t rest until justice is served”, she said in tears.
The deceased, who had divorced his wife about a month ago, left behind two children.
Civilian shot dead at Ashaiman
The development comes days after a man was allegedly shot and killed by a military officer at Ashaiman in the Greater Accra region in a similar exercise.
The Ghana Armed Forces said in a statement that they had commenced investigations into the matter. The deceased, named as Ofotsu, reportedly suffered gunshot wounds after he snatched a service rifle from the said officer during an ensuing melee. He was later rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival by medics.
Ashaiman lawmaker, Ernest Norgbey, who described the action of the officer as “wicked” and “barbaric” assured that justice will be served.
This is not the first time such an incident has occurred in the Ashanti region as well. In October 2019, three police officers were interdicted after they allegedly beat up a man to death in the Asante Akyem South District.
The deceased was a 33-year-old driver, Kofi Ampomah, popularly known as Barluso, who passed on at Adomfe. The Ashanti Regional Police Command is yet to uncover the circumstances behind his death.
By Jonathan Ofori, Daily Mail GH