GAF statement on Mepe soldiers withdrawal laughable & total fabrication – Ablakwa

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North Tongu Member of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has described the statement that was issued by the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) reacting to reports of the withdrawal of the military detachment from the communities affected by the flood, as laughable and a fabrication.

He accused the author of the statement of destroying the image of the GAF.

GAF had dismissed reports claiming that military personnel deployed to Mepe in the Volta Region for Humanitarian Relief Operations following the spillage of the Akosmobo Dam, were withdrawn.

This was after Mr Ablakwa earlier indicated that the soldiers had been asked to leave the community.

“Who ‘above’ has given orders to the military detachment helping us cross flood waters to immediately withdraw when the water levels haven’t receded and when thousands of lives are at stake in camps across these waters?”

“Who in government is behind this utter cruelty?” He tweeted.

But in another tweet, Mr Ablakwa said “I just received a call indicating that the order has been reversed and that the soldiers have been directed to return with their boats and resume duty.

“Soon, we shall fish out those faceless, unpatriotic elements.”

Reacting to this development in a statement, the GAF stated categorically that “the information in circulation is inaccurate and that the personnel have not been given any ‘orders from above’ to withdraw from Mepe or any other community affected by the spillage, contrary to the social media posts.

“It must be emphasised that the Humanitarian Relief Operations (Operation Boafo), being
conducted by the Ghana Navy’s Riverine Command and the 48 Engineer Regiment of the Ghana Army is being executed in phases. As of 22 October 2023, the situation in Mepe has been brought under considerable control and therefore it became necessary to urgently redeploy some personnel and equipment to other distressed communities around Battor and its environs, which were in dire need of support.

“Following the deployment of additional personnel and equipment to these distressed communities, the operations being conducted have been varied to suit the evolving situation. It must be placed on record that for the purpose of this operation, GAF has established an Emergency Operations Centre which is coordinating all the GAF activities in a harmonised manner in conjunction with NADMO.

“Currently, personnel of the Naval Riverine Command and the Army’s 48 Engineer Regiment are still deployed and conducting the relief operations (Operation Boafo) in accordance with the exigencies of the situation, at Mepe, Battor, Sogakope, Adidome, Aveyime, New Bakpa, Big Ada Ada Foah and the surrounding communities.These personnel are equipped with 10 Naval Boats and four (four) Engineer Assault Boats. From 13 October 2023 till date, GAF has rescued about 12,000 persons.”

But speaking on the Sunrise show on 3FM Monday October 23 in reaction to the statement issued by GAF, Mr Ablakwa insisted that 30 minutes after his tweet, “the military detachment returned and they said they wanted me to talk their Commander in Accra, he has been trying to reach me. I spoke to him and he said the order had been reversed and the people are coming back.”

Regarding the statement, Ablakwa said “That statement is laughable, a total fabrication, there was no deployment to Battor, that statement is full of blatant falsehood and whoever drafted that statement has not done the military’s image any good.

“First of all, it is not true that the situation in Mepe is under control, the water levels have not receded, in many places that you have to walk, people use boats so it is not true that the situation has been brought under considerable control.

“The claim that there is some refinement in Battor is not true. I have been on the grounds permanently and all my constituents have had such a laugh since they released this statement because the epic centre of this disaster is Mepe, everybody knows, there is no other place in Battor that requires urgent assistance and you can redeploy from Meoe to Battor. Whoever drafted that statement doesn’t know what he is talking about, he has not been to the grounds.

“There was no deployment anywhere, they didn’t go and help anybody in Battor, I was in Battor, there was no operation in Battor.”

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