Deputy Attorney-General, Alfred Yeboah, has refuted allegations by #FixtheCountry Movement Convener, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, that the Police tortured him while he was under detention for allegedly threatening a coup on social media.
Mr. Yeboah believes the Social Activist who spent more than a month behind bars, is making mere allegations without substantive evidence.
He explained that Barker-Vormawor, per the Convention against Torture Instrument, failed to indicate any intentional conduct by the Police officers to inflict severe pain on him while he was in their custody.
“Talking about torture, I beg to differ, unless he provides other evidence. From what I have listened to, he is talking about a cell meant for three, keeping about thirty. How does that amount to torture?” he quizzed.
Speaking in an interview, Mr. Yeboah opined that the Social Activist could rather complain about poor conditions in the cells and prisons.
He however noted that even with such complaints, Barker-Vormawor will not make a strong case since it is not anything new in Ghana’s prisons and cells.
“He is not the only person who has been to a cell or prison facility. I’ve known people who have been to prison, they’ve come back and seen the conditions there and they had cried about the conditions there, he may have a point there.
“We don’t have a 100 percent prison and cell conditions in Ghana due to, of course resource constraints, but every government has been trying to make sure that we get the best out of it in the circumstance for ourselves…what he has said so far does not amount to any aspect of torture,” he added.
But one of the Conveners for the #fixthecountry movement, Benjamin Darko, in an interview said, Barker-Vormawor will subsequently hold a presser to detail out evidence to support his torture allegations.
“With regards to the torture that Oliver was referring to, I would like to not address that issue right now. He will address it himself in the subsequent presser, so I would like to leave that for him to do later which will be very soon,” he noted.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Attorney-General stressed that if Mr. Barker-Vormawor provides any evidence of torture, his outfit would look into the matter.
“If he provides better particulars about how he was tortured, definitely the state will be interested in looking into it because as a state, we believe in the fundamental human rights of our citizens and that if any citizen claims or alleges that his fundamental right has been violated, in this case through torture, the state will be interested in it, provided he provides the evidence that is needed to support his claim of torture,” he explained.
Convenor of the #Fixthecountry movement, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, had alleged in a live Facebook video on April 11, that he was manhandled by security officials while under detention for allegedly threatening a coup on social media.
“On Friday, 11 February, 2022, I was unlawfully detained by security officials of this regime, tortured, and subsequently held without just cause for 35 days,” he said in his first public statement since his release from Police custody.
According to him, he spent 35 days in a cell that was “designed for four people, but ultimately filled with nearly 30 detainees.”
He recalled that these cells were “without ventilation and had bed bugs, cockroaches and rats crawling” inside.