Deputy Defense Minister Major (Rtd) Derrick Oduro has described as unwarranted concerns raised by some security experts about the ‘Shoot to Kill’ approach of dealing with activities of Fulani herdsmen.
Some security experts have raised concerns over government’s ‘Shoot to Kill’ strategy in dealing with the Fulani cattle menace in the country, describing it as an abuse of the rights of the animals.
In an attempt to clamp down on activities of these herdsmen, security personnel have been charged to shoot at any possible threat aimed at impeding their efforts at ensuring safety.
According to the deputy minister, activities of the Fulani herdsmen pose serious threats to human lives, and is an infringement on the human rights of persons affected as well.
“When a lady is being raped by a Fulani man in the bush, and she cries helplessly and nobody defends her, then you come and say it’s against human rights.”
The retired army major said there is nothing wrong with the approach once the aim of the security personnel to protect human lives is achieved.
“If a cow is coming to put its horn in between your two thighs and throw you off, and a soldier stands watching the cow do justice to you that is when you know the difference between protecting you and the soldier.”
There has been a standoff between farmers and nomadic herdsmen at Agogo, especially, over the destruction of farms by cattle for more than 25 years.
A Kumasi High Court in 2012 ordered the evacuation of the animals from the area but the herdsmen did not comply.
About two hundred police and military personnel were deployed in Asante Akim Agogo to enforce the order.
This led to security personnel being advised to defend themselves against attacks by suspected herdsmen.
The situation led to the murder of some herdsmen and hundreds of animals, an act that has been widely condemned.
According to the Deputy Defense Minister, the exercise embarked on by the security personnel has been successful so far.
“The job of the security personnel is 90% complete, and the exercise has been very successful.”
On the general security situation in the country, he thinks the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government has done better as compared to the erstwhile National Democratic Congress administration.
Watch the deputy defense minster as he speaks to TV3‘s Catherine Frimpongmaa