Mike Osei Tragedy in Amsterdam
Mike Osei, a Ghanaian living in Amsterdam Bijlmer, in the Southeast district met his untimely death on Thursday, 4 October 2007 around 7 pm in front of the Gravestein building. The Police busted into the 10-storey flat, arrested one man and in his bid to run away, Osei fell from the 7th floor and died as a result of the Police action.
Incidentally this sad event coincided with the 15th Anniversary of the Bijlmer Disaster in which Israeli EL AL Cargo plane crashed into a block of flats, about half a kilometer away from the spot where Mike fell, on October 4 1992. Fourteen Ghanaians, including women and children, lost their lives in this accident.
Memorial ceremony in wreath-laying was already taking place in a calamity already fading into oblivion when Mike Osei fell.
Circumstances surrrounding his death is still sketchy and cloudy that Ghanaians mounted a huge demonstration yesterday never before in the history of them in the Netherlands.
The news is still brewing hot in both the local and the international media, thus bringing into sharp focus under the microscope, the excesses of the Dutch immigration policy fashioned out in her pandemic racial animosity towards migrants.
Twenty four hours from now, a delegation made up of representatives from the Ghana Embassy in The Hague and the Interim Advisory Council for Ghanaian residents in The Netherlands, will meet the Mayor of Amsterdam, Job Cohen to ascertain the facts of the case that led to this tragic accident.
There are versions of conspiracy theories including a possible Dutch Police complicity. Another theory has it that the man had just been released from jail some 10 days ago and was already suffering from trauma, intimidation and fear and, the Police harassment might have created the panic that resulted in him trying to escape another arrest.
This FEAR in the African community in particular has resulted in many incidents in the past where people jumped to death or became maimed as they tried to escape Police arrest.
Meanwhile arrangements and feverish preparations are underway for the burial of Mike Osei, as the entire Ghanaian Community hangs in grief and is awashed in the traditional brick red coloured 'Kobin' cloth, symbolising state of mourning.