National Democratic Congress [NDC], Member of Parliament for Kumbungu, Ras Mubarak, has backed calls for a presidential probe into the burning of 14 tipper trucks and an excavator belonging to some of his constituents.
The earth moving equipment, which were being used for illegal sand winning activities in the Dalun River, were set ablaze by some soldiers who are members of the government’s Operation Vanguard task-force in the Kumbungu District of the Northern Region.
In a statement on Tuesday, the Regent of Dagbon, Kampakuya-Naa Andani Yakubu Abdulai, called on President Akufo-Addo to set up a committee to investigate the actions of the task -force.
Reacting to the statement, Mr. Mubarak was of the view that although the task-force had the backing of the state, it ought to act within the confines of the law.
He also said Operation Vanguard should have taken into account the poverty levels in the area.
“The area is one that has been through acute levels of poverty and one would expect that the state would be measured in dealing with some of these things. Nobody is asking the state not to deal with people who are violating our laws, but as [the Regent of Dagbon] indicated in the statement, it has to be done within the confines of the law. You cannot the cite the law and go and do things as if you are in the stone age era,” the MP said.
Mr. Mubarak is among Minority MPs from the Northern Region who have said they want the Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul, summoned before Parliament to explain why the military personnel set ablaze the heavy duty equipment.
The Northern Regional Minister, Salifu Saeed, explained that the soldiers had classified the sand winners as a security threat hence their action, after several warnings fell on deaf ears.
The water pumping station at Dalun, risks being shut down because of the sand winners, and the Northern Region REGSEC had given the sand winners several warnings to leave the area as far back as December 2017 but to no avail.
“I warned them, I gave them an ultimatum in December  that they should move out of the site. We used a diplomatic approach because we wanted them to abide by the law and also consider the situation,” the Minister told Citi News.
By: Naa Kwarma Siaw Marfo/citifmonline.com/Ghana