A sporadic firing of live bullets amidst spraying of tear gas Friday evening, June 23, in Bolgatanga, led to the death of two men and another in a critical condition.
The death of the two; Thomas Amisiaya and the other whose name was given only as Peter was as a result of an attempt by some residents of Yorogo, a suburb of Bolgatanga, who left the body of one James Akuntubegu Atariboru at the Bolgatanga Municipal Police Station Friday June 23, at about 6:45pm after he was allegedly crashed and killed instantly by Daniel Alhassan Azaah, the Senior Mortuary attendant at the Upper East Regional Hospital, Bolgatanga on Thursday June 22. This occurred at about 6:30 pm at Yorogo on the Bolgatanga-Bongo road when the deceased was returning home from Bolgatanga on a motorcycle. The incident occurred just about 800 meters away from the house of the deceased.
Following the killing of James, some residents of Yorogo who could not withstand the gory scene, attempt to unleash their anger on the alleged killer but he managed to run away. However, they set ablaze his car. Their claim was that, Mr. Azaah intentionally killed James. The later conveyed the body to the regional hospital morgue but returned to pick it Friday evening ahead of a scheduled burial ceremony on Saturday.
While at the morgue, some aggrieved relatives who did not understand why Mr. Azaah was not put behind bars but, was rather still walking freely, allegedly assaulted him, proceeded to his bungalow near the morgue and vandalized some of his personal belongings. In a swift response, the police arrested four persons including Peter Adongo, the Assembly man for Yorogo Electoral Area.
These arrests further angered the bereaving relatives and in their reaction, they sent the corpse in a coffin to the Bolgatanga Municipal Police station, demanded an immediate release of the four. But, when the police declined to grant their request, they abandoned the corpse in front the police station and started rioting. The police in a rather hash response, fired what they claimed were warning shots. In the process, the deceased; Thomas and Peter were hit by live bullets and were taken to the regional hospital bleeding profusely.
At about 2:00am Saturday June 24, Peter died on admission at the hospital while Thomas died the same day in the afternoon at Nasia in an ambulance that was conveying him to the Tamale Teaching Hospital after he had been referred by doctors at the Regional Hospital in Bolgaanga.
Meanwhile, the body of Akuntobegu Atariboore which was abandoned in front of the police station was buried on Saturday while those of Thomas and Peter were deposited at the Regional Hospital Morgue.
Following the death of the three from the Yorogo community, there has been heightened tension as residents blamed the police for not acting appropriately by allowing Mr. Azzah to walk free after he knocked and killed one their own and later shooting and killing the two.
Meanwhile, the four individuals arrested in connection with the incident – Nyaaba Nsoh, 30; Joseph Abubakari 20, Joshua Agambire, 30 and the Assembly member for the Yorogo Electoral Area Peter Adongo , 41 have all been granted bail.
Security has been beefed up at Yorogo and Bolgatanga especially at the police station as armed police and military officers patrol the areas to ensure no escalation of the disturbances.