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18.03.2008 General News

Naval Officers In Hit And Run- As They Turn 54-Year Woman Into Beggar

By Daily Guide
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“LIFE, THEY say, is war and I am praying to God to help me come out of the condition these naval officers have put me into. This has always been my prayer,” a 54-year old woman, Madam Mary Koomson, who was knocked down by two Naval officers in Takoradi in the year 2001, said in tears at Elmina.

That statement compelled this reporter to join her in shedding tears, since what happened to Madam Koomson could easily happen to any other person in the country.

Her leg has been amputated as a result of the accident, and she has been weeping frequently following the neglect by the two officers in question -189588 AB” Kudu Godwine Stelo Kobla and 188419 AB” Mike Richard - who, according to sources, have now been transferred to Accra.

Narrating her ordeal to DAILY GUIDE on Friday, Madam Koomson said she was staying in Takoradi as a trader, and that on July 18, 2001 at about 6:30 pm, on her way to fetch water, she was knocked down by a Navy vehicle driven by the two men when they attempted to overtake a taxi cab at a pedestrian crossing at the Airforce Road on the Takoradi-Axim main road.

Madam Koomson stated that she was taken to the Effia Nkwanta Government Hospital where she was admitted for one year, adding that she only saw Kobla one day when he brought her bread and some oranges, told her to use his name to buy all the drugs she needed, and stated that they were ready to pay for her bills when she was discharged.

After she was discharged, she stated that she sent a message to the two to come and pay for the bill, which was GH¢330 (¢3.3million) but they never showed up.

Madam Koomson indicated that it took the intervention of the Bethel Methodist Church in Takoradi to make an appeal for funds to pay her bills before she was discharged.

According to her, all efforts by the police to call the two to come and assist in investigations proved futile since letters sent to the Commander in Charge at Takoradi Naval Base did not yield any positive results.

According to a police source, their last letter sent to the Commander was dated December 20, 2006.

Madam Koomson said since that time, life has been hard, compelling her to relocate to her hometown in Elmina, where she turned to begging for alms from fishermen.

She stated that God being so good, she was at the beach begging for alms when one Peter Hammond, a herbal specialist at the Holy Table Spiritual Research and Healing Center at Bronyibima in the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abrem (KEEA) District, asked why she was in that state.

According to her, when she briefed Hammond, he became touched by her situation, adopted her, started treating her leg and provided her with her needs and wants, thereby stopping her from begging for alms.

She therefore appealed to Interior Minister and other Human Rights activists to help her deal with the two 'wicked' officers.
When DAILY GUIDE contacted the Commanding Operations Officer (C.O.O) at the Takoradi Naval Base, Kofi Ennim, he disputed the allegation that the police had sent them a letter to produce the two officers, and suggested that the police re-direct the letter to Tema Naval Base to produce the two officers to face the full rigours of the law since they are currently on transfer.

From Sarah Afful, Elmina

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