Pastor Paul Abreffah, Head Pastor of the Church of the Lord, Aladura in Nyinahin, a town in the Ashanti region of Ghana, has been found murdered at his residence in the town by unknown assailants.
Said to be involved in a land dispute with the chief of the town, Pastor Abreffah (60) had been stabbed several times in the stomach.
Police investigations have so far led to the arrest of three suspects, identified as Bismark Atta Senior, also known as Jordan; his brother, Oheneba Kwaku Duah, and Obiri Yeboah Asante, also known as Kwadwo Ketewa, a carpenter. But the fourth suspect, who is the current chief of the town, Nana Boateng Twum, is on the run.
A police source said the Aladura church acquired a vast piece of land in 1970 from a late chief of the town and had used part of it to cultivate oil palm trees.
Recently, Tigo, one of the telecommunication companies in Ghana, approached Nana Twum, the successor to the chief who sold the land to the Aladura Church, for a portion of land on which to erect its mast to improve communication delivery in the area.
The chief, reportedly without reference to the church, negotiated with the company and collected GH¢5,000 and released a portion of the land to it for the erection of the mast.
The source said when Pastor Abreffah heard of the deal he approached the chief who allegedly offered GH¢600 to the church as its share of the money he received from the telecommunication company.
“That resulted in a misunderstanding between the deceased and the chief, with the head pastor reporting the case to the Asantehene, who is the overlord of all traditional rulers in the Ashanti region, for adjudication.”
Though the Asantehene is yet to sit on the matter, his finding in favour of the Aladura Church could lead to the destoolment of Nana Twum, without appeal.
Possibly fearing such an outcome, Nana Twum, the police source alleged engaged the three suspects to kill the pastor to prevent him from testifying before the Asantehene and save him from losing the stool of his ancestors.
So at about 4:30am on September 1, while the deceased was returning home after obeying nature’s call, he was attacked and killed by the suspects.
The source said when news broke out, the suspects and the chief disappeared from Nyinahini.
But on September 16, the police had information that the suspects had returned to the town and arrested them to help with their investigations. A manhunt is currently on for Nana Twum.
There is some kind of division in the town as to who killed Pastor Abreffah; while some of the inhabitants claim the pastor might have killed himself but others believed he was killed by someone.
The assemblyman of Nyinahini, William Darko, told newsmen that when neighbours rushed to the scene at about 8 p.m., the pastor was writhing in pain with a knife stuck in his stomach.
“They realised someone was running into the bush and they gave chase but were not able to arrest the one.”
He added that the pastor was pronounced dead when he was rushed to the hospital.