Tears, Grief At Kasoa As Houses Are Demolished On Court Order

Tears, Grief At Kasoa As Houses Are Demolished On Court OrderFifteen bulldozers backed by scores of armed policemen yesterday pulled down more than 100 houses around the Lamptey-Mills area at Kasoa in the Central Region.
The exercise, which started around 7a.m., was carried out with the aid of some young men in yellow T-shirts with the inscription Vannettee at the back.

They were conveyed by two buses with registration numbers GR 8332 D and GT 1428 F.

At the time the Daily Graphic team arrived at the scene around 8a.m., a large crowd had gathered in the area with some of those whose houses were affected distraught.
 
They had all their belongings, ranging from clothes, beds, television sets and other personal effects outside their demolished buildings.
As the bulldozers rumbled through the structures, with hundreds of stranded residents wailing and weeping uncontrollably, one person collapsed while a 74-year old visually-impaired woman screamed out curses.
 
The old woman attracted attention as her building was reduced to rubbles, leaving her stranded in the process.
Sitting on the stair leading to the porch of her demolished building, the 74-year old woman, Madam Adzo Agboada, told the Daily Graphic that she was at home in the morning when the police and bulldozers moved in and asked her to vacate her building.
“When I asked them why, nobody told me anything, but directed me to come out and started demolishing the building after throwing our personal effects out,” she said.
She said she had nowhere to lay her head as she had nowhere to go, adding that an amount of GH¢400 which was entrusted to her care got missing in the course of the demolition.
Madam Agboada said no prior notice was given to the residents before the commencement of the exercise.
Another landlady, Gladys Baah, who wept as she spoke to the Daily Grahic, said she was just about to prepare for her daily morning chores when the police and some young men in yellow T-shirts, together with the bulldozers, moved to her house.
“They asked me to get out as the men in yellow T-shirts went into the house and started bringing our things outside,” she said, saying that when she enquired why the action was being undertaken, “I was told by the police and young men that they were carrying out a court order”.
According to her, nobody showed her anything, and indicated that with her building demolished, she had nowhere to take her belongings, let alone sleep.
A banker, Mr Rexford Antwi-Boasiako, who was seen rushing to see the state of his house, said he was at work when one of his relatives called to tell him that his building was being demolished.
He, like the others, said no prior notice was given before the exercise began, adding that “even if they were going to do something like that, they should inform us”.
Margaret Vorsah, another victim, said she did not know whether the place was under dispute or not.
The Kasoa District Police Commander, Superintendent Isaac Buabeng, told the Daily Graphic that the police were in the area to carry out a court order.
He, however, said the exercise had been suspended for now. The Central Regional Police Commander, DCOP Rose Bio Atenga, said the police did not carry out the demolition and that the police were only there to provide security to carry out the Swedru High Court ruling in favour of Hilda Attoh-Dedei Nettey against Ngleshie Amanfro per Nii Kwashie Glorlor II and Ngleshie Amanfrom, Accra.
She said on February 6, 2008 a letter signed by Mr Senyo Dzamefe, Justice of the High Court, was recieved by the police.
The letter, she said, read “the plaintiff, having obtained judgement for recovery of possession of land lying and situated at Odukpong Ofankor in the Awutu Efutu Senya District, specifically obtained in her relief land registry number 3143/1976 and also an order to go into execution granted and dated 4th May, 2005”.
Accordingly, she said, the court requested a reasonable number of police personnel to assist bailiff to execute the writ of possession.
DCOP Atenga said portion of a reminder to the regional commander dated 20th August, 2008 and signed by the Registrar of the Court, Mr Emmanual Donkor, said “this court wishes to remind you of its readiness to carry out with the said execution from 27th day of August”.
She said the Central Regional Commander was asked by the court to assist the plaintiff, Hilda Nettey, to recover “possession of her land” because armed land guards had encroached on the land.
DCOP Atenga said the police headquarters were duly informed after which checks were made at the court to see whether or not there was a stay of execution, saying that the checks showed that there was none.
She denied that 2000 policemen were sent to the area, explaining that the whole region had about 1,500 policemen.
She said 100 police personnel were dispatched to the area to help the bailiff effect the court order, but added that the exercise had to be suspended as a result of security concerns.
Mrs Atenga stated that announcements of the demolition were made in some newspapers and on some radio stations in the country.
An executive member of the Lamptey-Mills Landlords Association, Alhaji Salifu Demsu, told the Daily Graphic that the case was pending at the Appeal’s Court and the Stool Land Boundary Settlement Commission.
He said the landlords were under the Amanfro Stool, and was awaiting the next line of action of the stool.
He said six stools — Ngleshie Amanfro, Papaase, Odukpong Ofankor, Gomoa Fetteh, Awutu and Senya Bereku — were contesting the land in question.
 
Source:Graphic Ghana