- A Ghanaian soldier has been slapped and beaten by national security operatives in Accra
- Warrant Officer (WO1) Mashud Salia was physically assaulted while in uniform over his inability to give way to a convoy of four vehicles
- The Ghana Army has moved to placate troops at the Michel Camp in Accra where the assaulted officer is based
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A senior non-commissioned officer of the Ghana Army, Warrant Officer Class One (WO1) Mashud Salia, has been assaulted by operatives of Ghana's national security bureau, YEN.com.gh can report.
National security operatives physically assaulted and handcuffed WO1 while in uniform over his inability to give way to a convoy of four vehicles, according to a report by The Chronicle.
The incident happened at the Ashaiman Tulaku section of the Tema-Akosombo highway, on Wednesday, November 25, 2020.
The report stated that at about 8:30 am on Wednesday morning, WO1 Salia was driving his saloon car towards Michel Camp, amid heavy traffic, when he heard a siren-blowing convoy of four speeding vehicles approaching from his rear.
Citing eyewitnesses' accounts of the incident, the report added that the military officer, given the tight bumper-to-bumper traffic, failed to find space to give way to the approaching convoy and, thus, remained in his lane.
The move is said to have angered the gun-wielding national security operatives, who quickly alighted from their vehicles, set upon WO1 Salia and started to assault him in his car.
The operatives reportedly dragged the soldier from his car and inflicted further punishment on him in front of stunned onlookers before they drove him to the Michel Camp military base and dropped him off.
The brazen assault and public humiliation of a serving non-commissioned officer provoked a firestorm of fury and outrage among soldiers at the Michel Camp, prompting the military leadership to step in and calm tensions.
To that end, the army organised a durbar at Michel Camp to address the issue and allow the soldiers to air their grievances.
At the high-stakes meeting, top military and national security officials, including Chief of Army Staff Thomas Oppong Peprah and Deputy National Security Minister Henry Quartey, appealed to the soldiers to calm down and refrain from seeking vengeance on behalf of their compatriot.
The national security leadership assured the military officers that they would punish the officials who assaulted WO1 Salia.
As news of the assault reached the public, drawing anger and condemnation, the Ghana Army, in a statement issued on Monday, November 30, 2020, and signed by the Director of Public Relations, Colonel Aggrey Quarshie, condemned the attack on WO1 Salia and promised to bring the perpetrators to book.
The statement added that investigations to identify the national security personnel who physically abused the officer had already begun.
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The army also urged its officers to remain calm and professional in the execution of their duties.
“It is reiterated that the ongoing investigations will be pursued vigorously and sanctions meted out as appropriate. In the meantime, All Ranks have been urged to exhibit their usual sense of professionalism and tackle all duties with the same level of maturity,” the statement said.
YEN.com.gh readers have been reacting to the news of the assault, which has sparked outrage across Ghana's social media sphere.
On YEN's official Facebook page, commenters condemned the assault on the soldier.
Kweku Abban wrote: How could you treat your fellow security officer just like that. It saddens my heart anytime a national security officer acts violently just because his government is in power. And I'm not sure he's a professional officer; definitely, he's part of those vigilantes who were recruited to the national security forces. We must condemn it.
Owusu Donne also wrote: What happened to the professionalism that is expected to be exhibited by such security personnel?
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