The Member of Parliament for Builsa South Dr. Clement Apaak has taken a swipe at pollster Ben Ephson for giving thumbs up to the unnamed Commander who instructed armed military personnel to invade parliament on the eve of January 7, 2021, when MPs were electing a Speaker for the 8th Parliament.
The pollster and Managing Editor of the Dispatch speaking on Key Issues on TV3 gave thumps up to the Commander who ordered the soldiers to storm the chamber of Parliament to douse the pandemonium during the election of a speaker for the 8th Parliament.
In his view, the decision the Commander took was great considering the circumstances at the time.
“When a commander takes a decision he is responsible for it. I believe that being outside the interior of what was happening and nobody hadn’t briefed him, if I were to give the commander a pass mark for his initiative at the time, I will give him an A.
“Because when you are outside the perimeter of parliament and you hear angry words exchanges, the soldiers came in they came in with a very dignified manner.”
He added, “The other side of the coin was if the commander had just stood outside and pardon my language, the MPs had knives on them and decided to stab each other will we have criticised the officer in charge of the military that when they heard the noise why didn’t he intervene?”
But reacting, Dr. Apaak noted his disappointment in the respected journalist.
He wondered why Mr. Ephson will endorse an action that could have ended Ghana’s stable democracy.
Dr. Apaak said he was most disappointed and shocked for Mr. Ephson to endorse an unfortunate incident.
In a tweet, he wrote: ” Ben Epson endorses invasion of Parl by soldiers, applauds such a potentially democracy ending action? Most disappointed and shocked. The invasion was to cow NDC MPs because we insisted on a secret ballot to elect a Speaker, not [the] restoration of order. ”
Dr. Apaak had earlier slammed Mr. Albert Kan Dapaah for claiming at his vetting committee that a Commander ordered the invasion.
The nominee appearing before the vetting committee on Wednesday said he was alarmed when armed military men invaded the chamber during the election of the Leadership of the 8th Parliament.
The nominee told the committee he took the step to find out who ordered the military invasion because it was shocking.
He was responding to a question asked by James Agalga who wanted to know who authorized the deployment of the troops in the parliamentary chamber.
“…It is a strange thing when you have a military team invade the parliamentary chamber. For whatever reason when I saw it, I was also alarmed and my colleagues in government were alarmed that it had happened. So, I did take the trouble to find out how it happened. It was that simple, somebody, a commander in his opinion thought that things were getting out of hand in the chamber and that he needed to go there to try to restore order.” he revealed.
… So, I asked why? And what was his motivation for going there? I can only say this is something that shouldn’t have happened but no harm was caused to any member of parliament and let me agree with you that going forward this is not something we should encourage and hope that it doesn’t happen again.” He added.
Expressing shock at the response, Dr. Apaak wondered if the Commander would order the invasion without an order from above.
He is also wondering why the military men who invaded the house proceeded to the side of the Minority if their intention was to maintain law and order.
He said the military was invited to the chamber to intimidate the Minority hence the explanation given by the nominee cannot be true.
He tweeted: “Really, a military commander on his own decides to invade parliament with troops because he felt there was the need to restore order? So why did the soldiers proceed towards the NDC MPs? The military was invited to intimidate the NDC MPs. We are not idiots Kan Dapaah!”