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19.08.2004 General News

NDC Dismisses Mercenaries Link

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Accra, Aug. 19, GNA - The National Democratic Congress (NDC) says: "Neither Former President Rawlings nor any top NDC member has the time and disposition to recruit imaginary 'Liberian mercenaries' to destroy what they have taken so much pain and toil to nurture for the development of Ghana."
This was contained in a press release issued on Thursday and signed by Dr N. Josiah Aryeh, General Secretary of the NDC, in reaction to recent media reports linking the Party to alleged recruitment of mercenaries to invade Ghana.
The statement said: "NDC is disgusted at attempts being made by sections of the media to draw the Party into disrepute with totally false stories about so called invasion of Ghana by mercenaries from Liberia."
The Party expressed its indignation at the falsity of the reports and said they "demonstrate the inexplicable fixation of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Government with alarmist reports about imaginary attacks on Ghana.
It recalled a similar story carried by 'The Vanguard', alleging that Former President Rawlings was on a mission to procure arms in the Congo and yet the Government never found it necessary to interrogate him upon his return or had the reports been substantiated.
"Also, Lt Col. Gbevlo-Lartey was retired from the military on grounds of alleged involvement in destabilisation plots but a plot was never found.
The statement accused the Government of importing sophisticated weapons and said with bristling sophisticated weaponry; agents of the Government were spoiling for a fight.
It said: "The NDC takes these matters seriously and is of the view that these concocted stories about the massing of mercenaries and stockpiling of weapons are obvious indications that grounds are being prepared by the Government to hatch a sinister plot aimed at either eliminating (God forbid) the Party's Founder, Former President Jerry John Rawlings physically or decimating the NDC as a Party or both." The Party, therefore, denounced the media reports "that certain NDC officials went to Liberia to recruit and train mercenaries for a purported invasion of Ghana".
The statement said: "The NDC wishes to caution the President Kufuor's Administration that security gimmicks raise tension and constitute serious infractions on the sovereign will of the people of Ghana to develop their own path to democracy.
"They were voted into office to lead this nation towards socio-economic development, not to attempt to tear it apart to satisfy their selfish parochial interests."

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