It is alleged that in the early morning hours of May 29, 2017, one Captain Maxwell Adam Mahama went jogging along a road in Denkyira-Obuasi, in the Upper Denkyira West District of the Central region. He belonged to the 5th Infantry Battalion (5BN) at Burma Camp in Accra but was stationed in Denkyira-Obuasi where he commanded a detachment of soldiers officially deployed for duties in the Upper Wassa Forest Reserve. It is alleged that he wore a pistol in a holster as he ran. Allegedly, a woman who saw him mistakenly assumed he was an armed robber. It is further alleged that there had been a robbery in the town recently, and so she alerted others who organized a mob. Whatever the truth is, this poor captain was attacked by the mob from the town. He was stoned to death and his body set on fire. He died ignominiously. We have seen videos circulating on social media that purports to record aspects of this horrific incident.
We at OccupyGhana® wish to extend our condolences to his family, the wife and children he has left behind and the Ghana Armed Forces for this loss.
It was not too long ago when the ire of the nation was raised over a young woman being stripped naked and abused by a mob in Kumasi. The woman was allegedly caught attempting to steal GH¢1,100 from a shop owner in the PZ Area in Adum, Kumasi, an allegation that later was found to be false.
The practice of mob justice is unfortunately a rather dark side of our country’s history and does not seem to want to go away. It is unconstitutional, barbaric, unjust, unfair and criminal, and often has fatal consequences, as was the case of Captain Mahama. It often ensnares the innocent and deprives law enforcement of the chance to thoroughly investigate cases. Moreover, it denies victims due process and constitutes an abuse of their human rights and violation of their dignity. And, our Constitution demand respect of the right to life and outlaws all extra-judicial killing.
The brutal murder of the Captain exhibits a certain depravity and wanton disregard for the sanctity of human life that leaves a rather deep stain on our nation. Should his life not have mattered more than the wish to mete out justice beside the road somewhere in Denkyira? Should we not always put life first?
This dastardly act also exposes a dire lack of appreciation of what human rights and dignity are. The perpetrators of this heinous crime may have mirrored our nation and its people’s sore lack of knowledge, understanding and appreciation of these basic human entitlements.
Reports indicate that the Captain was in the Denkyira area as part of the military’s “Operation Calm Life” involving fight armed robbery and illegal small-scale mining or galamsey, twin scourges that are plaguing our dear nation. Is it not ironic and tragic that in his quest to fight these plagues, he fell to another? Is our nation so infested with the wrong and nefarious that good people are now falling victim as they seek to serve this great nation?
We as a people should hang our collective heads in shame for this despicable act.
It behoves us all to lend our voice in calling for a thorough investigation into this rank act. It is incumbent on all of us to not rest until the actors in the morbid killing of Captain Mahama are found, arrested and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. We as Ghanaians should stand up against mob justice whenever and wherever it happens. It is high time that this malignant and festering cancer is rooted out of our civil society that is quickly turning uncivil. Further, we all need to remind ourselves that each of us is endowed with unalienable human rights and dignity that is buttressed by our Constitution and that we all need to respect those rights as it pertains to ourselves and to others. Then and only then will God bless this homeland Ghana and make us great and strong.
Yours, in the perpetual Service of God & Country