Lockdown: Stop testing the soldiers – Dep. Defence Min. warns

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Deputy Minister of Defence Major Rtd. Derrick Oduro says his outfit has intelligence that some persons are hell-bent on thwarting the lockdown directive by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

The Nkoranza North legislator points to persons leaking misleading videos and others intentionally coming out to test the paws of the security personnel on the ground.

His worry comes on the back of a myriad of videos of clashes between security personnel and civilians circulating with captions implying that members of the public were being manhandled by the joint police and military enforcement team.

Security Chiefs commanding the operations in the Greater Accra, Tema and the Greater Kumasi have rebuffed those videos tracing them to unrelated matters and issues occurring in other jurisdictions other than Ghana.

Speaking to Starr News’ parliamentary correspondent Ibrahim Alhasan, the deputy minister reiterated calls for the public to disregard those videos insisting that the security personnel were on the grounds for humanitarian and not combat duties.

He however contended that “I know that there are some recalcitrant people who first and foremost do not want the exercise to succeed putting behind them the implications that this disease can go a long way, to affect other people. They want to go out to test the pulse of the military.”

“You will remember that before the commencement of the exercise, a video came out that the president has sent soldiers to Kumasi to go and beat Kumasi people and that time the exercise hadn’t even started. There were other videos that have come up which are not even in Ghana and why should people do that,” he questioned.

He nonetheless assured that the ministry in collaboration with the Ghana Armed Forces has taken note of some authentic videos depicting soldiers dealing highhandedly with civilians which will be internally investigated.

“What we are saying is that any case that will come up, we will investigate and if you misbehave we will punish you. If they are not true, we will not punish innocent people because they are the ones we are using and they are not there to terrorize people,” he pointed out.

Meanwhile, parliaments committee on Defence and Interior has been proposing a review of the restrictions imposed relating to markets and transport terminals.

The chairman of the committee Seth Acheampong, who disclosed this after the committee’s meeting with the two-sector ministers did not give details of these proposed reviews they are demanding but expressed worry that traders and drivers were still doing business as usual despite the imposition of restrictions.

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