Three Policemen who allegedly fired the warning shots that killed the 17-year-old first year student of St. Paul’s Senior HighSchool (SPACO), Denu in the Volta Region, have been arrested pending investigation.
The Volta Regional Police Commander, DCOP Peterkin Yentumi Gyinae, who described the incident as unfortunate when he led a delegation from the regional command to commiserate with the family, made the disclosure.
He promised that a thorough investigation would be undertaken into the incident and those found culpable would be dealt with. He also disclosed the arrest of the two suspected homosexuals, saying they were being investigated.
DCOP Peterkin Gyinae explained that ordinarily the police would not use live arms to disperse a rioting group, but in the case of St. Paul’s the police received a distress call that two people were to be lynched in the school. So the patrol team, which was already on its rounds in the area, was called to see to the situation and other personnel joined in later.
The Public Affairs Director of the Ghana Police Service, Supt. Cephas Arthur, has said that if found culpable, the three officers could face dismissal, reprimand, interdiction or salary freeze, among other sanctions.
Family Mad With Police
Meanwhile, the family of the victim has expressed disquiet over the conduct of the police and the school authorities concerning the death of the student.
Alhaji Yushur Turawah, uncle of the deceased and chief of Old Zongo in Ho, the regional capital, described the police as “unprofessional” for using firearms to disperse rioting students of the school.
An autopsy report from the Police Hospital, Accra, has confirmed that Rakhib died of “a high velocity gunshot head injury.” It also added that the bullet fractured the skull of the boy and penetrated his brain, leading to cerebral (brain) injuries.
Use Of Bicycle
Turawah lamented, “With the use of the torchlight, it took the courage of a fellow student to transport our son on a bicycle to a nearby clinic” after the police prevented students from coming to the aid of the wounded boy.
“According to the students, the police prevented them from attending to the student. It was at the clinic that the boy was referred to the Aflao General Hospital in a taxi chartered by the students,” Alhaji Yushur Turawah averred.
There was a rampage precipitated by attempts of students to lynch two of their mates alleged to have been involved in sodomy. Reports say some teachers, with the help of other students, had shielded the suspects from the irate students, hence the chaos.
Yushur Turawah observed that the conduct of the school authorities left much to be desired. He said, “As at the time of the chaos, none of the authorities knew who called in the police; they did not know that one of the students was shot; they did not follow up and have not made any official statement whatsoever.”
He said, “Apart from one teacher who came to the hospital and the chaplain who went to identify the corpse with the father (Alhaji Suleman Adio), nothing has been heard from the school.”
As at the time this report was being filed, the family was yet to hear from the school, although Rakhib Adio was buried last Sunday morning in Ho.
Alhaji Adio, with tearful eyes, blurted: “Today (Monday, February 9, 2015) is exactly one month that I sent my son to the school. I have paid all that the school requested but the school has not come to report to me what happened to my son. That is not acceptable.”
Alhaji Adio dispelled claims that his son was involved in the riot. He described his son as “a good boy, humble, obedient and respectful; that is why I sent him to school.” He indicated, “Even the doctor who conducted the autopsy wasn’t happy; he said the boy was not strong enough to engage in such a riot.”
He therefore called for justice and pleaded with the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to ensure thorough investigation into the matter.
FROM Fred Duodu, Ho