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General News of Saturday, 23 March 2019

Source: Daniel Kaku

Families of kidnapped girls losing confidence in security operatives

The families of the three kidnapped girls in Takoradi say, they are beginning to lose confidence in the state security operatives for failing to live up to expectation following the kidnap of their children.

They claim true justice can only be secured by those considered affluent in the Ghanaian society due to the lackadaisical attitude exhibited by both judiciary and security operatives in the country regarding the three kidnapped cases.

The families made this position known on Friday, March 22, 2019, when the Member of Parliament (MP) for Ellembelle Constituency, Emmanuel Armah Kofi-Buah led a delegation to visit them in Takoradi.

The lawmaker had visited the families to commiserate with them following reports of the three girls reportedly missing and suspected to have been kidnapped within the Sekondi/Takoradi Metropolis and Effia Kwesimintsim Municipality in the Western Region respectively.

The families who appeared jilted, and disappointed in the security setup in this country, took advantage of the presence of the delegation to pour out their hearts, and once again appealed to members of the public to help trace the whereabouts of the three girls.

They further appealed to the lawmaker to join the collective campaign been waged in drawing attention of security agencies to the matter.

They also want Parliament to take action in pushing the executive authority to act decisively in finding a lasting solution to the problem.

Alexander Koranchie, father of the 15 -year-old Priscilla Koranchie said he had been monitoring activities in the country, and obviously had come to the conclusion that poor people will continue to struggle in trying to look for justice.

On her part, Comfort Arhin, mother of the 18-year-old Ruthlove Quayson, could not hold back her tears, and wondered if justice will ever be manifested in the kidnapped cases.

Francis Bentum, father of 18-year-old Priscilla Bentum, who was the first family to receive the delegation, recounted his last words with the victim and wondered if they will ever meet again since nothing concrete had shown that the girls could be traced.

The Three Kidnapped Girls

The suspected kidnapped girls are, Priscilla Blessing Bentum, 21, who went missing on August 17, 2018 at Kansaworodo in the Effia-Kwesimintsim Municipality.

Next was RuthLove Quayson, 18, who went missing on December 4, 2018 at Butumagyebu Junction, popularly called BU-Junction in the twin-city of Sekondi/Takoradi.

The third victim was Priscilla Koranchie, 15 years, who went missing on December 21, 2018 at Nkroful.

Police Arrest Of First Suspect

Following reports of the first reported kidnapped case, the Western Regional Police Command arrested and placed in custody, Samuel Udoetuk-Wills, a Nigerian, suspected to have been involved in the kidnapping of the girls.

He previously escaped from police custody under bizarre circumstances but was recaptured sleeping in an abandoned building.

He has since made two appearances in court, but nothing concrete in terms of the whereabouts of the girls seems to have been made known despite the campaign been waged nationally for the suspected kidnappers to free the girls.

Since the arrest of the prime suspect, the affected families say the police have made very little progress in tracing the young girls, while a police search in the vicinity of Udoetuk-Wills hideout, yielded no concrete results, except the clothes of one of the kidnapped girls.

Calls For Parliament's Intervention

Responding to the appeal made by the families of the three girls, the Ranking Member on Trade and Industry, said he will personally take up the issue to petition the august house of parliament to take the matter up.

He subsequently consoled the families whilst reassuring them that the western caucus in parliament will intensify the campaign to draw attention of investigators, the speaker of parliament Professor Mike Oquaye, and all those who matter to take keen interest in the worrying subject which has created anxiety among the affected families.

Emmanuel Armah Kofi-Buah remarks

Mr. Armah Kofi-Buah said the Region will not be used as a fertile ground for criminal activities and promised to engage the leadership of parliament to haul the Minister for Interior Ambrose Derry to the house to answer charges and questions on updates of police investigations into the matter.

He said insecurity should not be entertained in the resource endowed region considering its contribution to national development.

"We must collectively guarantee this region peace and stability. The issue of kidnapping in our region should be the prime concern of all of us . Again, we must impress upon security operatives to intensify their activities and bring the perpetrators to book", he concluded.

On her part, the Western Regional Women Organizer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Madam Gladys Egyin Kwakye, who was part of the delegation, also consoled the families whilst appealing to government to develop interest in the matter and cause arrest of the suspects behind the three kidnapped cases.

She said the women's wing of the NDC will join the campaign to draw attention of investigators, government and all stakeholders involved in security affairs in finding a lasting solution to the three kidnap cases.