President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said that calls for a review of the criminal code is a legitimate demand that would lead to the progress of the country.
Recent disturbing events, combined with developments that hitherto were not envisaged in the criminal statutes, he said, should form the basis for a thorough review of the Criminal Procedure Code promulgated in 1960 – during the first Republic.
President Akufo-Addo said this when the family of the late Major Maxwell Adam Mahama called on him at the Jubilee House to say thank you to his government for the assistance given to it after the cruel murder of the military officer.
He told the deceased’s family that any appreciation should rather go to the people of Ghana for the show of solidarity and grief at his loss.
When the deed occurred, the spontaneous reaction of revulsion by the good people of the nation regarding the manner in which he died, was an indication that his painful passing was be a lesson that should guide future discussions on the review of the laws.
“Events occur and we look at responses of society, the institutions of the state, to determine whether they are adequate in dealing with a problem that had not been anticipated.”
The family have demanded a review of the Criminal Code and President Akufo-Addo said since the unfortunate incident had come up for the first time, it would make sense to take another look at the law to take those developments into account and create the needed space for the evolution of society.
He said he was convinced that much lessons had been learnt, especially by the Ghana Armed Forces from what happened.
The President expressed satisfaction that the various steps that were outlined to be taken to send the deceased officer off with dignity were carried out without delay.
“All of these, the recognition, the support of the state, the various arrangements, they can never take away the loss which is felt by the family.
I know that your sense of loss is very acute and it is going to take a long time for it to find its proper place in your soul.
But this is the lot of man – these moments of difficulty and loss, our comfort is always to be with the Almighty, our redeemer, it is difficult to believe that He will abandon us. I am confident that He will never abandon us.”
He counselled the family to continue to seek solace in the solidarity of not just the Ghanaian people but in the design of the Almighty, saying, “He knows best why these moments of trial and tribulations are brought unto our path”.
“But we have to continue to hold on to our faith to be able to survive such moments; that is my commendation to you.”
Mr. Ahmed Zakaria Sakara, Spokesperson of the family, said they were grateful to the President for his effort – both directly and indirectly, at assuaging the pain of the loss.
They were appreciative of the government’s support considering that the event took place barely five months into the Administration of the President.
According to him, the intervention by the government helped in calming down the mounting pressures and had kept the fight against illegal mining on course.
The family, he added, took great solace in the visit of the President which culminated in his posthumous promotion of the deceased to the rank of a Major from a Captain.
He however asked that the law should work and that they were confident that justice would be done.