The brutalization of residents of Ashaiman by officers of the Ghana Armed Forces on Tuesday, March 7, 2023, has resurrected conversations about incidents where the Armed Forces have in the view of majority of Ghanaians misconducted themselves and abused the rights of citizens.
To some people, the incident at Ashaiman is reminiscent of the era of military rule where soldiers arbitrarily and routinely assaulted innocent citizens and in some instances murdered some Ghanaians.
As the conversations about the Ashaiman incident trend, Raymond Acquah of the Multimedia Group has recounted a story in 1982 that highlights how military officers clashed with citizens and abused their rights in the military era.
He shares the story of how one Major Joe Darko of the Ghana Army Medical Corps, Kumasi stormed a church with a pistol to order the church members to stop the service and fill potholes.
The pastor and the church members per the narrative ‘rejected’ the order, pleading to carry out the assignment when they are done with the service.
Their plea fell on the good ears of the major who left the church but the leaders of the church followed it up with an official complaint to the military hierarchy about the conduct of the major.
The major was queried about the said incident which infuriated him, forcing him to go back to the church with his pistol during which ‘visit’ he threatened them.
His presence sparked a clash and he, in the process discharged his firearm which injured a police officer, who was a member of the church.
The church members in their efforts to retrieve the firearm from Major Joe Darko inflicted injuries that resulted in his death.
His driver who escaped, informed the military officers about the incident which sparked a wave of attacks on the church members and their communities, resulting in the death of a police officer and a football fan.
Read the full story as shared by Raymond Acquah below