It’s not true 300 Ghanaians are standing trial in Libya – Hannah Tetteh

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has denied reports that over 300 Ghanaians were on detention at a centre in Tajoora, Libya and were to be sentenced to death by a Libyan court if the Ghana Embassy does not intervene.

Media reports last Monday suggested that the said Ghanaians were to be sentenced to death on Monday, December 21, 2015 but according to the Sector Minister, Ms Hannah Tetteh there was no truth in those media reports.

She explained that investigations undertaken by the Ghana Embassy in Malta with oversight for Libya has revealed that the detention centre mentioned in the reports was under the control of the Libyan Dawn Militias which back the Tripoli government.

According to her, there are four Ghanaians at the centre awaiting deportation whose cases will be followed up by the Embassy.

She said the Ghana Embassy in Tripoli, Libya was relocated to Valletta, Malta over a year ago and hence the Embassy in Malta conducted investigations on this matter

‘After checking with the Courts in Tripoli it could not be confirmed in the Courts that there were 300 Ghanaians standing trial. From the information currently available to me therefore it appears the story is not true. Should any new facts emerge, or any additional information to come to our attention, I will inform the public,’ Ms Tetteh posted on Facebook on Tuesday.

She said the Foreign Affairs staff were invited to the Libyan Foreign Ministry on Tuesday to discuss the matter, and from all indications the Libyans were not happy with the way such a matter was reported and the message that it sends about their country.

‘I think we have to be careful in the information we put out in the public domain. For the various media houses in Ghana that have reported on this issue I think it is useful to point out that Libya has an Embassy in Ghana with a charge d’affairs in charge of same. I would encourage them to check their information from as many credible sources as possible before going public.,’ she said.

Background
The information about the matter started from a Ghanaian domiciled in Libya, Yaw Tekyi who in an interview with Adom FM in Accra said the only chance of survival for the detainees was for officials of the Ghana Embassy in Libya to show up in court.

He said the detainees have been in prison in the Libyan town of Tajoora for the past three months awaiting the intervention of officials from the Ghana Embassy.

He explained their crime was loitering around in town because they had nowhere to go when they reached Libya to seek greener pastures.


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