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14 July 2017

National Security probes alleged maltreatment of 63 Ghanaian deportees

The National Security Ministry has begun investigations into the alleged maltreatment of some 63 Ghanaians by the United States of America authorities while they were being deported in June. 2017, Foreign Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has revealed.

There are reports that some Ghanaians who had gone to seek greener pastures in USA but ended up deported were handcuffed, forced and maltreated as they enplaned to Ghana.

One of the deportees who spoke to Accra-based UTV claimed their legs and hands were all chained for close to 28 hours and starved. He further claim that they were denied use of the wash room while on the flight. He said due to their maltreatment they refused to disembark from the plane when they arrived at the Kotoka International Airport in Accra to enable the media video them for the sake of evidence.

But the United States Ambassador to Ghana has refuted the claims of the deportees being treated inhumanely.

Robert P. Jackson explained to the Foreign Affairs Committee of Parliament and the sector Ministry, that those affected were deported involuntarily as they had attempted to resist deportation.

The deportees were sent home for various offences, ranging from drug possession, larceny, assault, theft, sexual assault, identity theft, illegal entry, forgery/fraud, resisting arrest and other non-criminal offences.

The issue has gotten Ghana Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee conducting a parallel investigations into the matter.

However Hon. Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has indicated that the National Security outfit has been directed to investigate the circumstances surrounding the issue.

“This is the word of the deportees against that of the US Embassy. So far we don’t have any concrete evidence through pictures or any other way. Is something that the National Security are looking into, once they find anything either in support or to the contrary they’ll let us know. As a Ministry we are not seized with doing investigations of that nature.”

 

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