The two ex-Guantanamo Bay detainees — Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al-Dhuby – do not hold any Ghanaian passport, the Deputy Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Minister has asserted.
This is contrary to reports that the two are in possession of Ghanaian travelling documents.
The Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Abdul Malik Kwaku Baako, over the weekend, alleged on Accra-based radio station Joy FM that the erstwhile John Mahama-led administration succeeded in changing the names of the two ex-convicts before issuing them with the passports, adding that the documents for the ex-Gitmo detainees were granted them on the blind side of the Ghana Refugees Board.
But speaking on Onua FM’s morning show Yen Nsem Pa, Deputy Foreign Minister Charles Owiredu categorically denied this allegation, saying the only document in the possession of the two Yemenis, popularly known as GTMO 2, is an international traveling document which was given them on arrival.
He explained that there are no available documents that show that the two have applied for Ghanaian passport and have been granted same.
“They are not holding Ghanaian passport. No, not a Ghanaian passport. What is in their possession is rather an international traveling document. They are now refugees in our country and I have not heard they have applied for our passport. They are not Ghanaians but remain refugees,” the deputy minister told Bright Kwesi Asempa on Wednesday.
Mr Owiredu allayed fears of Ghanaians, noting that there is no document available to the government that indicate that the two ex-G-Bay detainees are threats to the nation.
He said they are going about freely doing legitimate business but was quick to add that “the National Security is keeping close eyes on them while negotiations are ongoing to relocate them”.
Although the deputy minister did not disclose where the two are being housed, he just said, “They are safe and living in this country.”
When asked how soon the negotiations will be over for them to be relocated, the deputy minister just said “very soon”.
“This is an issue being handled by the Foreign Affairs Minister and we have been talking to some countries that have experience in managing refugees. We conclude on one and as soon as the negotiations are done, we will bring it to the Parliament for the processes to complete.
“They are working, so they are taking care of themselves not us,” he stressed.
By Bright Dzaka|3news.com|Ghana