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27.04.2006 General News

Male Victim's Family Alleges Bias

By The Ghanaian Times

FAMILY members of one of the male victims of last Friday's police shooting incident at Dansoman have expressed anger at the police authorities and other public officials for visiting only the families of the two women victims.

They said this and the attempt by the police to portray their relative, Mallam Musah, as a criminal smacks of selective justice and discrimination.

Speaking to the Times yesterday, a family spokesman, Yakubu Adams, described the official attitude as “not being fair to us.”

“I wonder whether the justice system in the country exists otherwise why should we be treated differently?,” he asked.

“If four people die in such an unfortunate accident, how then should two of them be described as victims of circumstances and the others as armed robbers, is it because we do not have anybody to speak for us?,” Mr Adams further queried.

He said they had been told that the Interior Minister together with the Inspector General of Police and some senior police officers as well as some members of parliament and functionaries of both the NDC and NPP, visited the relatives of the female victims, Lydia Opoku and Ataa Boatemaa to express their condolences.

Mr Adams refuted allegations that Mallam Musah was an armed robber, saying, “Mallam Musah does not have any court case against him and the allegation that he was and the police wanted list, is not correct.”
He said Musah was born and lived at Tunga in Dansoman until he left Accra with his parents to Niger but he returned later.

“Musah is not a thief; because of his structure, people hire him as a security guard at pubs and restaurants around Dansoman,” he added.
A delegation, led by Interior Minister Papa Owusu Ankomah on Tuesday visited the families of Lydia Opoku and Boatemaa at Dansoman Zodiac to console them and apologise for the incident.

Lydia, Ms Boatemaa, Mallam Musah and the driver of a Tico taxi-cab, they were travelling in, were killed last Friday when the police opened fire when the driver allegedly failed to stop on being ordered by the police to do so.

The Police authorities have since explained that the police patrol team involved in the incident shot at the wrong car which they had mistaken for another taxi of similar make which they were pursuing for conveying suspected armed robbers.

An earlier a police release issued after the incident described Musah as a suspected armed robber who was on their wanted list.