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17.05.2019 General News

We Did Not Grant Arms Importation Permit—Agalga Replies Gov't

Hon James AgalgaHon James Agalga

Hon James Agalga, a former Deputy Minister for Interior has debunked claims that the Mahama-administration granted a private company permit to import pump action and short guns into the country.

According to him, before the National Democratic Congress (NDC) left office, the then government through his office as Deputy Minister only granted permission to the security agency to issue importation permit and not permit to. Importation.

Mr Agalga made these comments in response to allegation that, it was the past NDC government that granted permit to the importation of firearms to a company into the country in 2017.

Earlier, the Minister for Information Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah,in reaction to the NDC leadership call for government to be courteous with the importation of the large cache of weapons into the country last week, told Journalists at a press conference in Accra Thursday May 16, that government was surprised by the stance of the NDC.

According to the Minister, it was the former Deputy Interior Minister that issued the permit for the importation of the large caches of arms.

But in an interview with Starr FM monitored by the Modernghana, Mr Agalga who is a Member of Parliament for Builsa North, accused the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government of been dishonesty and insincere on the matter.

He said, what the government should be telling Ghanaians is who and when the authorization was given for the importation.

The former Deputy described the government posture on the issue as disingenuous, explaining that permission granted for somebody to issue an import permit was not same as authorising for importation.

Mr Agalga pointed out that, the volatile security situation in the country today is quite different as to the time the application was brought under the NDC administration.

He defended his party position and said, the NDC statement and comments on the matter only sought to draw the government attention to the current insecurity situation around the country.

The MP said if government fail to analyse the situation but only focus its attention on the letter to suggest that the NDC supposedly signed in 2017 to make the case, then government is been insincere and dishonest.

The Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority last week,detained the container with weapons.

When it was opened, the officials discovered that the weapons were made of different makes, including pump actions and short pistols, which the owners claimed were hunting guns.

It was later revealed that, the company had obtained importation permit from the government in 2018 to import same.