August 2, 2002
A new scenario is unfolding in Ghana as regards to the fate of Liberian exiles in the country.
The Ghanaian government issued a press release warning Liberian politicians in Ghana to desist from using Ghanaian territory to engage in the expression of what it considered negative views on political developments in their country.
The Wednesday July 31, 2002 edition of The Statesman newspaper, quoting the release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, reported that "Using Ghana as a platform to make such remarks is considered unacceptable by the Government of Ghana".
The story continues, "while the government of Ghana will continue to offer sanctuary to nationals of countries who so stand in need, in accordance with international conventions, it shall, however, not allow the territory of Ghana to be used as a platform by other nationals to attack the persons of their Heads of State and or their governments."
The release made specific reference to views expressed by Liberians on Monday July 22, 2002 on political developments in Liberia at an international forum on Liberia hosted in Accra.
The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA)… hosted an international conference on the deteriorating state of human rights in Liberia. Delegates came from Liberia, Denmark, Geneva, Namibia, Nigeria, Senegal, Benin, Burkina Faso, Togo and Ghana. The Liberian human rights lawyer Tiawan Gongloe who was brutally tortured in police cells in Monrovia attended the conference and narrated his ordeal.
The MFWA, at the forum, launched a dossier chronicling some of the human rights violations committed by state security since Mr. Taylor came to power from 1997 to April 2002.
After the two-day conference, a staff of the Ghana Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) called the MFWA on Wednesday July 24, 2002... The staff said there were conflicting information coming out of Liberia on the conference the MFWA hosted but did not elaborate. According the staff, their information came from the Ghana Bureau of National Investigation (BNI).
Exactly one week later since the MFWA was informed by the CHRAJ, the Ghana Foreign Ministry issued the statement to the press warning Liberians in Ghana.
It is now convincing that the Ghanaian government harbors some sympathy for Mr. Taylor and that threatens the survival of us here...
The Chairman of the Ghana Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice, Emile Short attended the conferenceand he and I had a brief chart... My fear is that I don't know what information the commission may have received or heard about me that prompted the staff to ask for me.
I raised concern with the Executive Director of the Media Foundation, Professor Kwame Karikari but he only encouraged me not to be afraid.
I need the attention of all media and human rights organizations and activists including all freedom loving people. Insecurity is slowly creeping in on me.