Ghana shot to the attention of the world during the week when it emerged that two former detainees of Guantanamo Bay are set to be resettled in here.
The decision by government, which was only communicated to Ghanaians ex post facto, has sparked numerous debates over the cons such a decision holds for a tiny developing nation like Ghana with very little ability to tackle any potential insurgency.
Foreign Minister Hannah Tetteh has come under fire most of all, and the UK branch of the opposition New Patriotic Party are the latest to pile on.
In a statement, the group calls on the Minister to resign her position for misleading Ghanaians about the potential threats of the terrorists. They also say the entire process was not transparent, thus putting her competence up for debate.
Read the full statement below…
The New Patriotic Party UK calls on Hanna Serwaa Tetteh, Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, to resign immediately. Madam Tetteh has misled Ghanaians about why terrorists previously imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay have been brought to Ghana, thereby placing the whole of Ghana and all Ghanaians at risk of terrorist attack.
In an official statement, Madam Tetteh told Ghanaians that two detainees from Guantanamo Bay who have just been expatriated to Ghana had been cleared by the US security authorities and were not a threat to national security. She was being economical with the truth.
This is not the first time Madam Tetteh has made conflicting statements. In November 2014, as Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, she sat on Radio Gold and said that the jailed socialite Nayele Ametefe (aka Ruby Adu Gyamfi), now serving eight years and eight months in the UK for drug smuggling offences, had thought she was carrying gold dust in luggage she took to London. British police and customs officials later certified that the “gold dust” was narcotics: 12.5 kilograms of cocaine, worth nearly £2 million. The same Nayele Ametefe, arriving at Kotoka International Airport to board the plane to London on which she was arrested on 10 November 2014, was given VVIP access by Ghana national security officials through the airport in Accra.
In Madam Tetteh’s statement, the Foreign Minister failed to tell Ghanaians that these two terrorists, Mahmoud Omar Bin Atif and Khalid Salih Al Dhuby, were already in the country. This created the impression that the former detainees were about to arrive and Ghanaians had nothing to fear.
It has also emerged that she did not inform Parliament because Deputy Ranking spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Mr Issac Osei MP for Subin has stated in an interview with the press that parliament had not been informed .This to us is gross abuse of power .
However, it has emerged that both men, whether proven terrorists or not, received training in Afghanistan with the Taliban. The Taliban are still waging a war against the democratically elected Afghan government, in tandem with the work of al-Qaeda, which has links to Islamic State and other terrorist groups operating in the Middle East and Africa. In fact, one of the two men now in Ghana was an aide of Osama Bin Laden.
The government of Sudan took some of these ex-Guantanamo Bay inmates some years ago. Of two prisoners transferred in December 2013, at least one escaped to Yemen to commit atrocities. Another one who transferred to Sudan in 2012 is now a terror chief in Yemen. The leopard does not change its spots!
The United States government thought it fit to detain both of these men for years. In a Fox Television news report as well as on ABC News, the men were described as high-security risk: in other words, they are dangerous and prone to engage in terrorism.
We in NPP UK believe that common sense rather than financial benefit and personal gain should guide our leaders. The security, welfare and well-being of the people of Ghana are more important than the interests of our selfish leaders. Our rights cannot be horse-traded for money, or to curry favour with the US government for its support in helping to win elections!
We respect the United States and admire its democratic values and freedoms. The United States is the most powerful country in the world. It has military bases everywhere from Europe to the Pacific. If these men are a danger to US citizens, does that mean Ghanaians are second-class beings, and so terrorists should be dumped on us, endangering ordinary Ghanaians’ lives?
Former Ghanaian President John Agyekum Kufuor together with Nigeria and Algeria refused the request of the United States government in 2007 to set up a US Africa Command (AFRICOM) with military bases in their countries.
Mr. Kufuor flatly rejected the idea of AFRICOM in Ghana. He put the welfare, security and wellbeing of Ghanaians first, something President Mahama and Hannah Tetteh have failed to do!
The Ghana Government under President Mahama is incapable of bringing an end to the current long trail of power cuts, armed robberies and financial crimes which are collapsing business in our country, putting people out of work, depriving our people of food, decent education and healthcare, and causing daily misery for our people. Recently a million bullets were discovered, brought into Ghana from Togo to cause mayhem; up to date no one has been arrested.
According to news reports in the last few days, Arthur Simpson Kent, who is being sought by the Metropolitan Police in connection with the murder of a reputable British television actress and her two young children, has been able to flee to Ghana. Interpol has had to intervene to assist the Ghana Government to find this man, because Ghana’s “forces of law and order” don’t have the ability or resources to track him down. It is into this environment that Madam Hanna Tetteh has decided to bring two men with a track record of training in terrorist activities.
Hanna Tetteh is unfit to be a Minister of Foreign Affairs. She has been untruthful and dishonest. She must go now!
8 January 2016
Nana Yaw Sarpong