Accra, Feb. 28, GNA - Wreaths were laid and flags raised on Monday at the Freedom Monument, Osu, to commemorate the 63rd anniversary of the shooting to death of three ex-servicemen at the Christianborg Crossroads on February 28, 1948.
The three, Sergeant Adjetey, Corporal Attipoe and Private Odartey Lamptey, all members of the Gold Coast Regiment of the Royal West African Frontier Force, that fought alongside the allied forces during the Second World War, were killed while the Regiment was going to present a petition to the then British Colonial Governor, Sir Gerald Creasy.
The colonialists had demobilized them promising to resettle them but had reneged on the promise.
The Vice President, Mr John Dramani Mahama, laid a wreath on behalf of the government and people of Ghana and Lieutenant General Peter Blay, Chief of the Defence Staff, laid one on behalf of the security services.
The Chairman of the Veterans Association of Ghana, Commodore Steve Obimpeh (rtd), laid one on behalf of the veterans, while the Otublohum Mantse, Nii Dodoo Nsaki II, laid one on behalf of traditional authorities.
Special prayers were said for the love, dedication and the service the three soldiers rendered to the country during the colonial era and for peace and stability in Ghana and the world.
Relatives of the fallen heroes, Ministers of State, Parliamentarians as well as other important dignities graced the occasion.
An impressive parade was mounted by detachments drawn from the Army, Navy, Air force, Police and veteran soldiers.
On February 28, 1948, a number of ex-servicemen were marching from Accra to Christianborg Castle to present a petition to the Governor on their unpaid war benefits when they were intercepted at the crossroads by a contingent of armed policemen.
The contingent, led by British Police Superintendent, Mr Colin Imray, ordered that they disperse and when they refused to obey, he gave an order to the police to open fire and the three ex-servicemen were killed.
The ex-soldiers had fought alongside the allied forces in the Gold Coast Regiment of the Royal West African Frontier Force during the Second World War and had returned home poor and were not paid their gratuities.
After several appeals to the colonial government to consider their plight had failed, the ex-servicemen decided that a direct appeal should be made to the British Colonial Governor of the Gold Coast.
News about the death of the servicemen spread rapidly, leading to a situation where law and order broke down in Accra and other parts of the country.
It encouraged anti-colonial movements to press the British government to institute a committee to investigate the killings and general disorder.
The Committee recommended self-government for the Gold Coast, which subsequently led to the attainment of political independence for the country on March 6, 1957.