Amnesty International Ghana has called on President Akufo-Addo, the Attorney General and other stakeholders to immediately take steps to abolish the death penalty.
The group believes that capital punishment robs victims of the basic right to life and thus must be expunged from Ghana’s laws.
Although the death penalty remains in Ghana’s statutes, it has been literally dormant over the years.
Speaking at the launch of the Global Death Penalty Report, the Director of Amnesty International Ghana, Robert Akoto Amoafo, proposed alternatives to the death penalty.
“Ghana has not executed anybody in the last ten years and it is believed to have established a practice of not carrying out executions. Although no official moratorium executions are in place, Ghana has not carried out an execution since 1993. Twenty countries in sub-Saharan Africa have already abolished the death penalty for all crimes. Seven of which are in West Africa.”
“This is clear evidence that all countries in ECOWAS have abolished the death penalty in one way or another. The time is right for Ghana to join the league of abolitionist countries in Africa and the world by abolishing the death penalty for all crimes. Let us all remember that the death penalty is the ultimate denial of human rights and simply does not deter crime in any way.”
Even though Ghana has not recorded any execution by death penalty since 1993, the number of death sentences has increased from nine in 2014 to 18 in 2015.
As of December 31, 2018, there were 137 people, including three women, on the death row in Ghana, seven of whom are foreign nationals.
Amnesty International, Ghana has described the situation as worrying and wants the state to take appropriate steps to expunge the death sentence through a referendum.