Gov’t Engages Media Friends Against Alleged ‘Coup Plotters’

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Showing Video & Playing Audiotapes To Sustain Its Claim

With the ridicule that has greeted the “Kitchen Knife Coup’ claim, the government is employing its media friends to sway the minds of Ghanaians to believe that there was indeed, a plot to remove the Akufo-Addo government from office through violence means.

According to Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako, a close friend of the regime, he has watched videos and listened to audio recording of the coup plotters scheming to kidnap President Akufo-Addo and Vice-President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, during a public event that will have very senior leaders of the country congregated at one place.

The veteran Journalist, appears not to be the only media personality given the opportunity by the Akufo-Addo government to watch and listen to video and audio recordings of the ‘coup plot’, the conspirators intended to carryout out their attack as the host of Joy FM’s Current Affairs Programme; Newsfile, Samson Lardy Anyenini, also gave a hint he’d seen government’s evidence.

But some have argued that the videos and audios on the alleged coup, should have been made public at a press conference, if the government felt a need to get both the media and the public to appreciate its claim, but the selective strategy it has adopted, continues to breed the mistrust and cynicism since the Information Minister’s announcement.

Abdul Malik Kweku Baako, who sounded very convinced by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, was full of the praise for the Defense Intelligence of Ghana Armed Forces for infiltrating and taping the plot leading to the arrest of the suspects, who he said further planned to throw explosives and gaseous substances at the said public event, where the President, his vice and others will be attacked and kidnapped.

His revelations drew the ire of theMember of Parliament (MP) for Tamale Central and the former Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Inusah Fuseini.

The Parliamentarian, who is also a lawyer, was of the view that the showing of the video and the audios to journalists, does not bode well for the human rights of the suspects.

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP, did not share the view that there was any plan to overthrow the Akufo-Addo government. Instead the government was using the claim to divert attention.

To him, announcing that the people had been arrested for trying to destabilize the country, but charging them with manufacture and possession of weapons sounded odd to him, because on the account of government’s statement issued by the Information Minister, KojoOppong Nkrumah, the suspect should have been charged with treason.

Many have doubts about reports of the group’s action, but Mr Baako, told the host that he has seen the “crucial evidence” government is talking about.

Interestingly, there are computer technologies which can mimic the voices of people to frame them up in a crime. The technologies are in both audio and video forms.

But Mr Baako insists “I have been able to watch video recordings, I’ve been able to listen to audio recordings and I am convinced beyond doubt…the scenarios where they even contemplate kidnapping of the president. They contemplate a situation where…and this will come out in court.

“They contemplate a situation in which the president, the vice president, the Chief of Defense Staff and some other top shots are at a congregation, have congregated at a place to explore that thing they were doing there,” he said.

Dr. Mac Pam, is alleged to have led the development of 22 Improvised Explosive Devices. Mr Baako, says in the video, the doctor himself is seen with those building the IEDs.

“You see the guy manufacturing with the doctor present. This is video and they talk of exploding this thing which with projectiles come out like nails come out…yes like needles rather. And then also some chemicals that will make you…you go off; they contemplate that.

“These are things that they were discussing and doing …you see the manufacturing in action. They are doing it, but you see they had been infiltrated so it was the infiltrators who were videoing and recording for 15 months,” he said.

Mr Baako, who credited the security agencies for their “defence intelligence” was emphatic there is nothing fake about what is being reported.

“The meetings where they held deciding to recruit is all recorded..so in my view this not one of the fakes, although there have been fakes before,” he said.

He described the suspects as anti-establishment, who have taken unto social media to lambast both the NPP and the opposition NDC, but Col Festus Boahen Aboagye (Rtd) who was also on the programme, charged that there was nothing wrong in being an anti-establishment.

Col Aboagye, has held the view that government acted prematurely in the arrest and announcement, because a tactful approach would have resulted in rounding up those involved.

He also holds the view that understanding the motives of the plotters, would helped to ensure that the government put in place some corrective measures, but the current situation does not ensure these.

He doubted the capacity of the coup planners, saying in the past, coups have succeeded because there were some grumbling among the Ghana Armed Forces, hence a fertile situation was created for the overthrow, however, presently no one can say for a fact that such a situation existed to warrant a coup.

Col Aboagye, had hoped that the lawyer for the suspects, Victor Kojogah Adawuda, should have been invited to the News File programme to respond to some of the claims, as he had on some other platforms discounted government’s claims, but

Mr Baako, sharply retorted that from what’s available to him, the suspects had not been truthful to their lawyer.

Mr Baako said insisted “there were scenarios where they even contemplate the kidnapping of the President, and this is video, it will come out in court. They contemplate a situation where the President, the Vice President, Chief of Defence Staff and some other top shots have congregated at a place to explode that thing they were doing [you see the guy manufacturing] with the doctor present, this is video. And they talk of exploding this thing with needles coming out and then also some chemicals that will make you go off. They contemplate that, these are things that they were discussing and you see the manufacturing in action. You see they had been infiltrated, it was the infiltrators who were videoing and recording for 15 months and I give credit to the security establishment the Defence Intelligence in particular. The meetings were they met and decided to recruit is all recorded. So in my view, this is not one of the fakes.”

The Deputy Minister of Justice and Deputy Attorney General, Joseph Dindiok Kpemka, who was on the programme reacted to Lawyer Inusah Fuseini, saying there was nothing wrong arraigning the suspect before a court and charging them with a lesser offense of manufacturing and possession of weapon because government was being gradual, but will eventually charge them with treason.

When Mr Fuseini rubbished his claim, saying after 15 months of surveillance government, should have come out with the charge of treason especially having said that the country was going to be destabilized by the accuse persons, but the Deputy Attorney General insisted that the ultimate use of the weapons were to destabilize the country, and in the coming days the charge of treason will pop up.

Interestingly, Mr Baako in the estimation of the host of the programme, appeared more briefed than Deputy Attorney General Joseph , as he was cut midway in one of his submissions.

The Ministry of Information last Monday, said security operatives had foiled a coup plot and arrested the masterminds.

In a statement posted on Twitter, Ghana’s government said the plot that was targeting the presidency, had “the ultimate aim of destabilizing the country.

The statement added that the government had monitored activities of the plotters for 15 months, culminating in the arrest of three plotters and seizure of weapons last Friday.

According to the Ghanaian government, a group known as taking Action Ghana (TAG), was working to recruit and radicalize a base of young people against the political authorities, under the guise of “nation-building”.

The government statement said it had arrested the group’s leaders, identified as Frederick Yao Mac-Palm, EzorKafui and Bright Allan Debrah Ofosu.

The government claims the group was plotting with serving military officers to procure weapons, take over key installations and secure funding, with the aim of taking over the government.

During the seizure, government says it was able to recover a stash of weapons, including six pistols, three smoke grenades, 22 IEDs, two AK47 magazines computer equipment and one long knife.

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