Mistaken Identity: Outrage in Ghana following lynching of senior military officer (Video)

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The late Captain Maxwell Mahama

The lynching of a senior military officer who was mistaken for an armed robber has caused serious outrage in Ghana.

There has been widespread outrage in Ghana following the mistaken lynching of a top military officer by some residents of Denkyira Obuasi located in the country’s Central region.

MyJoy Online reports that the victim, Captain Maxwell Mahama, was lynched in the early morning of Monday, May 29, 2017, when he went jogging in the town a few days after he was posted there.

Captain Mahama, it was reported, unfamiliar with the city, reportedly stopped a woman to ask for directions but the woman raised an alarm and residents of the town mistook him for an armed robber and subsequently stoned and burnt him to death.

ALSO READ: "Gone Too Soon: Cameroon mourn young military officer killed by Boko Haram"

The death of the young officer who was said to be an only son and a father of two has raised so much dust in the country, so much that even President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo made an official statement on the matter and gave assurances that the death will not go unpunished.


The President expressed his condolences via his verified Twitter account with the handle @NAkufoAddo thus:

"My condolences to the family of Captain Maxwell Mahama on their tragic loss. I assure them (the Military) that the perpetrators of this heinous crime will be arrested and dealt with in accordance with the laws of our country."

Also, the immediate past President, John Dramani Mahama, has sent condolences to the family of the late Captain who was in line to be promoted to a Major.

“My heart goes out to my brother, Capt. Chubby Adam Mahama (Rtd.) on the murder of his son, Capt. Maxwell Mahama. #RestinPeaceMaxwell

And my condolences to the wife of Capt. Maxwell Mahama, his young children & to his mother on the loss of her only son. #RestinPeaceMaxwell,” Mahama wrote on his Twitter handle.

The death of the young officer has sparked outrage in the country with various civil society groups condemning the killing and calling for perpetrators to be brought to justice.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) whiles calling for calm among its rank and file, deployed men to the town to investigate the death where a number of suspects were arrested.


The Central Regional Police Command said it has arrested five suspects in relation to the murder. The Central Regional Minister, Kwamena Duncan, in confirming the arrest of the suspects, said.

“We went there and got to know the full circumstances surrounding the incident. A number of them were arrested but they did screenings to zone in the ones that were likely to have been connected to the incident.

They have now been brought to the regional police command. Five of them, after the screening, have been brought to the regional police command in Cape Coast for further investigation, and when a good case is built, it will be referred to the Attorney General’s department for the necessary legal advice.”


It was gathered that Captain Mahama was deployed to the town as part of a detachment that protected Chinese illegal small-scale miners.

The Upper Denkyira West District Chief Executive, Daniel Appianing, has however alleged that the army had been supplying its troop to protect the miners and most of them had taken laws into their hands and had been terrorizing the residents.

“There’s a large number of military personnel protecting Chinese that the lynched soldier is alleged to be part of. In fact, he was said to be the leader.

I’m shocked they are not briefing you very well but rather claiming they are here to fight galamseyers (Gold mine workers),” Appianing said.


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Some residents of the community are reported to have fled the town over fears of reprisal attacks by the army as colleagues of the slain soldier are said to have taken over the town and have taken about 80 men hostage while women and children have been held up in a church in the town.

Watch the video of the lynching of the officer here.

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