Human rights lawyer, Francis-Xavier Sosu, has criticised the police command in the Upper East Region for releasing a 29-year-old mason who was arrested for setting an 11-year-old boy ablaze.
“Why on earth will such a suspect be walking free?” Mr Sosu asked during an interview on Class91.3FM’s Executive Breakfast Show on Tuesday, 12 February 2019.
In his view, the action of the suspect “is clearly an attempted murder”, explaining that: “When somebody pours petrol on another and sparks fire, the natural consequence of that act is to kill, you are burning the person to death. That is what you want to do”.
Class FM’s Upper East regional correspondent, William Jalulah, who first broke the heart-wrenching story said the victim, Maxwell Ayinbisa, is still nursing his wounds of over one-year-old, which he sustained after the suspect doused him with petrol and set him ablaze.
On 24 November 2017, Ayinbisa and two of his friends were sent to buy petrol from a fuel station.
According to Ayinbisa, on their way from the errand, a man accused him and his friends of peeping at a woman in a bathroom.
The little boy said his friends fled the scene and left him behind. He was grabbed by his accuser, Nsobila John, who wrenched the gallon of petrol from him, doused him with the fuel and struck a match at him.
The father of the victim, Mustapha Rahamani told Class News that the suspect, after taking care of the initial medical bills of the boy, abandoned him.
The Bolgatanga Municipal Police Commander, Chief Superintendent Samuel Punobyin told Jalulah that the families of the victim and the suspect had reached an agreement to settle the matter out of court as of the time the incident happened. The suspect’s family also promised to cater for the little boy’s medical bills but defaulted along the line.
However, Mr Sosu told Benjamin Akakpo that: “I think that the police clearly erred on that occasion. If we continue to act that way, this country will get nowhere because we are creating a situation where people who are rich and powerful can actually offend people and pay for them”.