Former President and Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC),Mr John Dramani Mahama, has appealed to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to grant clemency to a pastor and his two followers jailed four years for flouting the ban on public gatherings due to COVID-19.
A statement signed by Mr James Agyenim-Boateng, Spokesperson of the NDC Campaign, said former President Mahama said the four-year prison sentence handed down to the pastor, Apostle Sampson Agakpe and two others was “draconian and an act of selective justice.”
“We must all abide by the law, that is true, but we should not engage in selective justice, where you apply the law heavily on church workers who flout the law. Yet, during primaries, people were seen flouting the law with impunity and nothing happened to them,” it said.
The statement said the NDC flagbearer in an interaction with Christian leaders in the Northern Regional capital Tamale, observed that the imposition of the COVID-19 restrictions was necessary to help fight the surge in infections and keep the country safe, “but some decisions and outcomes arising out of the imposition of the restrictions had not been pleasant”.
“We are all equal before the law. It should not be possible for political parties to flout a law and get away with it, yet when a church flouts the law, the punishment is heavy and draconian.”
The statement said Apostle Sampson Agakpe, Founder of the Church of Pure Christ in the Volta Region, was arrested, charged and jailed for four years together with his Assistant Pastor, Maxwell Dzogoedzikpe and the Church Secretary, Samuel Agakpe.
It said former President Mahama also spoke about the poor education and awareness among the citizenry, recounting an incident in Damango.
“In Damango, they ambushed me on the road, a huge crowd of people and nobody was social distancing, and many were not wearing masks.
When I drew their attention to the protocols, one of them shouted back that Corona will not infect them,” the statement said.