Emotions were high amidst the desire for retribution on the part of soldiers gathered at Burma Camp today [Thursday], following the lynching of one of their own, Captain Maxwell Mahama at Denkyira-Obuasi on Monday.
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 the 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,” one soldier noted.
‘Cool heads must prevail’
The Chief of Defence Staff, on his part, called for cool heads and reiterated earlier messages from Former President, J.J Rawlings and President Nana 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 scott free in this particular incident. We are collaborating with all the relevant security agencies and we are making study progress.”