The Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education, NCCE, Josephine Nkrumah, has suggested that the punishment handed to members of pro-NPP group, Delta Force, following their attack on the Ashanti Regional Security Coordinator in 2017, and the subsequent storming of the court to free their colleagues, was not severe enough to deter other persons from perpetrating similar acts.
13 members of the group who stormed the office of the Regional Security Coordinator, were fined GHc 1,800 each after they pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to commit crime and rioting at the Asokwa District Court in Kumasi.
They also signed a bond to be of good behaviour for 12 months, after their lawyer had pleaded for a non-custodial sentence for them.
Speaking on Point Blank on Eyewitness News, Josephine Nkrumah suggested that the ‘lenient’ fines handed to the members of the group might have emboldened the group to continue its illegal activities.
“There should be prosecution that is deterrent, not prosecution where you fine somebody GHc1, 300 for obstructing the course of justice. I thought that [the punishment was not deterrent enough]. I think that perhaps we should have seen some incarceration. I think that if we had seen fines, the fines should have been significant. There’s a range of fines, there’s the minimum and maximum but I don’t believe that they received the maximum for what they did.”
“Incarceration may not necessarily be the way to go, but I think there’s a deeper underlying problem and the problem has to do with our mindset – what we as a people when it comes to politics. Our idea of politics is very selfish, our idea of politics is thinking about voting for Party A or Party B because of what I can get for myself. It doesn’t look at the larger picture of what is in it for Ghana.”
The activities of Delta Force have come under the spotlight once again after heavily-built men believed to be members of the group stormed a meeting of constituency executives which was being chaired by the MP for Old Tafo Pankrono Constituency, who doubles as Minister of State for Monitoring and Evaluation, Dr. Anthony Osei Akoto.
The men disrupted the meeting and allegedly wanted to physically abuse the Member of Parliament over failed election promises.
The Member of Parliament, was however assisted to escape unhurt.
The public was left stunned in 2017 when, the 13 Delta Force escaped from lawful custody, after eight of their colleagues sparked confusion in the court in protest of the Judge’s ruling that the 13 be remanded and not given bail.
After the judge’s decision, the members of the group said they were not going to allow the ruling to stand.
The 13 later reported themselves to the police where they were convicted for the attack on the Regional Security Coordinator and fined.
The eight Delta Force members were accused of aiding the escape, and were charged for storming the court to release the 13.
But the charges were eventually dropped under controversial circumstances by the State for lack of evidence.
The Attorney-General’s Department at the time said it had not sanctioned the state prosecutor in Kumasi to drop the case involving the eight who raided the court.
By: Edwin Kwakofi/citinewsroom.com/Ghana