As Tension Engulf Burma Camp
Tension is reported to be high among the soldiers, particularly those inside Burma Camp, over the dastardly murder of Captain Maxwell Mahama by some residents of Denkyira Obuasi in the Central Region on Monday.
The Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), Major General Obed Akwa, had a hard time controlling his soldiers yesterday during a Military Durbar inside Burma Camp.
The meeting was to urge officers to remain calm and not avenge the murder of their comrade.
Major General Akwa, reiterated that those involved in the act, would not escape justice.
Captain Maxwell Mahama, who was with the 5th Infantry Battalion, was lynched while jogging at dawn on Monday.
Emotions were high amidst the desire for retribution on the part of soldiers gathered at Burma Camp, following the lynching of one of their own.
Some of them, called for the sacking of the District Chief Executive (DCE) of Denkyira-Obuasi, Daniel Appiannin by President Akufo-Addo.
The soldiers conveyed their anger over the killing of Captain Mahama in the presence of the Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Obed Akwa, who had a tough job suppressing the men who were out for blood.
“We are the last resort in this country. If we allow ourselves to be beaten this way… as a Christian, by what Jesus said in Matthew 26 verse 52: he who draws the sword must die by the sword,” one fuming soldier stated.
This soldier was supported by a Muslim counterpart with verses from the Quran to the cheers and applause of the soldiers present.
The soldiers also expressed impatience with the pace of police investigation, which has so far seen seven suspects arrested for their alleged roles in the murder.
The soldiers were, especially mindful of the videos of the gruesome act on social media, and wondered why military police, could not take control.
“We have military police. It is not in every instance that we allow the civilian police to be telling us about evidence. You have seen something clearly and you are telling me about evidence. What more evidence do you want from this? The Ghana Armed Forces has the military police. We can handle our things. It is not everything that you take to the civil police.”
Some of the soldiers also called for a total boycott and discontinuation of all anti-lumbering and anti galamsey operations currently being run by the Army.
“I will suggest we leave the work for the police to also carry out so that we come back to our barracks,” on soldier noted.
The Chief of Defence Staff, on his part, called for cool heads and reiterated earlier messages from Former President, J.J Rawlings and President Akufo-Addo, to convince them not to engage in any reprisal attacks.
“Even though this is a cruel act, cool heads must prevail. A statement like this coming from a former member of the Ghana Armed Forces and a former head of state and a former commander in chief needs to be examined and listened to very carefully.”
“That is my appeal to you today. Additionally, our Commander-in-Chief has assured us that nobody is going to go scot-free in this particular incident. We are collaborating with all the relevant security agencies and we are making study progress.”
He announced that, the Military High Command, would take care of the family of late Captain Mahama.
“I’ve been given some assurances. A lot of philanthropists have already come up and asked: ‘What can we do for the family?’ In fact one person wanted to see me today asking what he can do to support the education of the two children. I have no doubt in my mind that the family of this officer will never be left in the lurch,” he stated.
Major General Akwa added: “The Vice President made a statement yesterday that they will support the family in the organisation of the funeral and subsequently in the welfare and the upkeep of the wife and the children.
For us as high command, we also will do a similar thing and we take the opportunity to also appeal to philanthropists as have started coming in that whosoever is so touched by this unfortunate case is welcome to support the family to prove to the whole world that a life lost in the line of duty is never lost in vain.”