05.05.2005 General News

UN Soilder Exonerated

By Times
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The Military High Command has exonerated Captain Imoro Sanda from any wrong doing in the recent reported raids by Ivorian rebels into Ghana's northern territory.

Captain Sanda, who is the Unit Commander of Ghanbatt2 with the United Nations Peacekeeping Force at Bouna, La Cote d'Ivoire, has therefore returned to his base to resume command of his unit.

Colonel Emmanuel Nibo, director of the Armed Forces Public Relations Directorate told the paper that “investigations have shown that Captain Sanda was not involved in any raid on Ghanaian territory from his base at Bouna.”

The minister for defence, Dr Kwame Addo Kufuor, ordered the recall of Captain Sanda two weeks ago to assist in investigations into a reported attack on Saru, in the Bole District on March 12, this year, during which the Saru Wura Seidu, was allegedly abducted by Ivorian rebel force.

This followed the minister's visit to the area to ascertain reports of the involvement of Ghanaian troops based in Cote d'Ivoire in the attacks.

During the minister's visit, it was confirmed that rebels of the New Forces had been making incursions into Ghanaian territory to “enforce law and order” and Capt. Sanda was mentioned as being involved in the raids.

Recounting events that led to the naming of Captain Sanda in connection with the raids, Col. Nibo said some rebels of the New Forces of Cote d'Ivoire had been making incursions into Ghanaian territory, on suspicion that some residents of the communities were trafficking in arms. On one of such raids, he said a suspect, Nasiru Mohammed, a Ghanaian was arrested by the Ivorian rebels. Being a Ghanaian, the New Forces who knew about the Ghanbatt force there, handed Nasiru over to the Ghanbatt command.

Col. Nibo said as commander of the UN Force, Captain Sanda expedited the transfer of Nasiru to Ghanaian security personnel in Ghana. He said Captain Sanda had told the investigators that he was aware of the rules governing peacekeeping operations, which required officials to be impartial and restrict themselves within the border of the country of operations.

“The recall of Capt. Sanda was a normal administrative procedure and with his exoneration, he will continue to serve the full term of his mission in Cote d'Ivoire,” said Col. Nibo. However, investigations are continuing into the substantive issue of the Ivorian rebel incursions into Ghanaian territory.

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