The government has presented a cheque for GH¢1,750,000.00 to the families of the seven persons from the Zongo communities in Kumasi, who were killed by the police in Ashanti at Manso Nkwanta, onr alleged being suspecision of being armed robbers in 2018.
Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, the Minister for Zongo and Inner Cities, on behalf of the government, presented the individual cheques for GH¢ 250,000.00, to the family members of each of the deceased at the Kumasi Central Mosque yesterday.
He said the gesture was in fulfillment of a promise made by the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo during the launch of Zongo for Peace and Development in Kumasi in January 2019.
Dr Abdul-Hamid stressed that the package was not the government’s attempt to pay for the lost lives of the deceased but it was in accordance with Islamic principle and tradition which expects compensations for the families of people who have been unjustifiably killed.
The seven namely, Razak Sulley, Oliver Konlan, Abdul Hannan Basiru, Musah Seidu, Mohammed Bashir Musah, Mohammed Kamil and Baach Bont, were killed on July 16, 2018 when they were allegedly taken to be armed robbers who had attacked a mining site àt Manso Nkwanta, in the Amansie West District of Ashanti.
A five-member committee set up to investigate the circumstances leading to the killings, exonerated the deceased which led to the police administration interdicting the 21 policemen involved.
The secretary to the local committee on Zongo Seven, Alhaji Sharif Musah, on behalf of the families, expressed their gratitude to the government for the gesture admitting that, no amount of money could buy the lives lost but they appreciated government’s effort to support the families of the deceased.
“Clearly, no amount of money can bring the deceased back to life but we thank the minister and the president for showing concern for the families involved and we are most grateful,” he said.
The presentation coincided with the occasion of the Conference of Zongo Leadership meeting on the fight against illicit drugs and vigilantism in the Zongo communities.
The meeting was to discuss how stakeholders in the Zongo communities could help change the bad image associated with the community and educate the youth to be more industrious and avoid social vices like vigilantism, drugs, among others, that always get them in trouble with the law.
In view of this, the Asokore Mampong Municipality Chief Executive, Alhaji Alidu Seidu, disclosed that plans were far advanced to commission a vocational and technical training centre in June 2019 in the constituency that would help train the youth to be useful to their families and communities as well.
FROM KINGSLEY E.HOPE, KUMASI