Residents of Paga in the Upper East Region have appealed to President Akufo-Addo to pardon the former Member of Parliament for Chiana- Paga, Abuga Pele, who was handed six-year jail term for causing financial loss to the state.
Mr. Pele, who was also the former National Coordinator of the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Agency (GYEEDA), was on February 23 convicted on 19 counts including ‘wilfully causing financial loss to the state’.
His accomplice, Philip Assibit, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Goodwill International Group, was also found guilty on six counts including defrauding by false pretences and accordingly sentenced to 12 years.
But the people of Paga on Sunday staged a demonstration to register their displeasure about the imprisonment of their former MP who they say did not warrant conviction in the case because he was innocent.
Clad in red, the about 300 residents marched through the principal streets of Paga holding placards some of which had the inscriptions “Abuga Pele, we are behind you” and “selective justice is injustice”
Addressing journalist after the march, their spokesperson, Donald Tumyeridam, appealed to President Akufo-Addo to pardon their former legislator, claiming he was used as a “scapegoat” in the GYEEDA scandal. He said though they support corruption fight, they would not sit down to allow innocent people go to jail, especially Abuga Pele who had served Ghana and the constituency with humility and dedication.
“We believe that corruption must be fought, but not with innocent people, while the real culprits walk in freedom,” Tumyeridam noted.
The residents did not understand why those they perceive to be the wrongdoers were walking freely when the judge, in delivering the judgement admitted that Abuga Pele never benefited from any of the payments.
“We would like to fervently appeal to the president of the republic of Ghana, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, who has all in his life stood by the rule of law… to relook into the case to help settle the misdemeanour that has characterized this very case ”
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