Navy, Youth Clash: Family Demands Justice For Slain Relative

Henry Okoe


Relatives of the two people slain in last Friday’s clash between some military personnel and Tema youth are demanding justice.

As part of this year’s Kplejoo festival, the youth took part in a street procession, and when they arrived in front of the Eastern Naval Command, there was a misunderstanding between them and the naval ratings on duty.

During the process, a Navy vehicle was allegedly damaged by the youth, resulting in an altercation that allegedly led to the death of two of the young people and injuries to some military officers, reports said.

Janet Amu, sister of Christopher Amu, one of the deceased, informed TV3 that her brother was caught in the crossfire while coming from work.

According to Janet, her brother was tragically stabbed during the altercation, resulting in his untimely death.

She demanded a thorough investigation into the incident and requested the perpetrators to accept responsibility for their actions.

“We, the family, want the perpetrators to accept what they have done and come out to apologise, instead of finding ways and means, trying to clear themselves from the whole thing,” she stressed.

Henry Okoe, one of the youth leaders in Tema who witnessed the disturbance, recounted a situation in which military forces were hostile toward citizens during the festivity.

“Six military men came out of the facility right in my presence, beating them and pounding their faces with firearms.

“I also noticed the military Navy bus running through the crowd, and when the youth realised their lives were in danger, they began hitting the van,” he recounted.

According to Okoe, one of the uniformed soldiers inquired what they were doing and proceeded to cock his gun, forcing the youth to flee for their life.

Bismark Bonsu, a resident of Tema, also stated that he was beaten by the military officers, which has caused considerable pain.

GaDangme Council

The GaDangme Council has also condemned the Navy’s use of live ammunition at this year’s Kplejoo festival in Tema, which resulted in deaths.

“It is the view of the GaDangme Council that the use of live ammunition by the military during a traditional festival is a gross violation of human rights and an abuse of power. The military’s role is to complement the police to protect and defend the citizens, not to harm or kill them,” the GaDangme Council said in a statement signed by its President, J. Ayikoi Otoo.

“The indiscriminate use of live ammunition in a crowded public space demonstrates a lack of restraint and disregard for the safety and well-being of the people,” the statement added.

“Furthermore, the use of excessive force by the military reflects a systemic issue of impunity and lack of accountability within the security forces. The culture of impunity enables such abuses of power to go unchecked and perpetuates a cycle of violence and injustice,” it noted.

The statement described the action by the military as “high-handedness”, and called for reforms within the security forces to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.

“Justice must be served, and those responsible for the tragic deaths of the two youth must be held accountable,” it added.

GAF Response

However, the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) explained that the youth instead launched an assault on a naval vehicle, injuring some military personnel and causing damage to the vehicle.


In a statement, the GAF said subsequent attacks on the Tema Naval Base by a mob resulted in further destruction and casualties.

“At a stage, the security of the Base was threatened, and in order to protect the sensitive installations in the Base, warning shots were fired to repel the attack,” it indicated.

“It was later reported by the Police that two civilians were brought to the Tema General Hospital dead.

“The cause of death is yet to be ascertained.  Again, on Saturday, April 13, 2024, the mob attacked the Tema Naval Base and the Naval Barracks at Tema New Town (Biekro Barracks), leading to the destruction of property,” the statement read in part.

By Prince Fiifi Yorke

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