Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election: I did not authorize security deployment – Bryan Acheampong

Former minister of state at the National Security Ministry, Bryan Acheampong, has explicitly dissociated himself from the security operations associated with the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-elections violence.

Bryan Acheampong, who is currently the Minister-designate for Food and Agriculture, was questioned about his involvement in the violence when he went before the Appointments Committee of Parliament for vetting on Monday.

He said that he wasn’t involved and shouldn’t be held responsible for overseeing the brutalities while he was in office.

“This is not in any way to justify what happened in Ayawaso. But in the 500-plus page report [of the Commission of Inquiry], there wasn’t any part that mentioned that I authorized it. So everybody including myself was surprised and afraid that my name found expression in the conclusion that I should be reprimanded. That is why the White Paper rejected that recommendation because it failed to establish the factual basis that I authorized that operation.”

The contentious by-election was held to replace the late Emmanuel Kyeremateng Agyarko, a Member of Parliament who had been serving at the time.

Six people thought to be NDC supporters were hurt when some National Security Operatives opened fire at the La Bawaleshie polling place during the election.

Journalists also documented instances of police abuse on camera.

The NDC later declared its withdrawal from the contest, stating that it did so to stop additional assaults on its members.

Years after the violent incident, Bryan Acheampong claims that he had nothing to do with the operatives’ deployment and cannot be blamed for the violence. 

“I have been cleared by the White Paper but not withstanding that, it is my conscience that I have to live with. I am a Presbyterian, and I am a man responsible for what I do and can’t be responsible for what everyone else does. I am saying that, for Ayawasyo Wagon, I did not authorize it, I don’t know anything about it”, he added.