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The last time I saw John Kumah, he was not sick – Kwesi Pratt

Veteran journalist and Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr, has expressed his shock and disbelief over the death of John Kumah, the deputy finance minister and MP for Ejisu, who reportedly died on Thursday, March 7, 2024, at the age of 45.

Speaking on Peace FM’s morning show Kokrokoo, Pratt said that he never saw Kumah unwell and that the last time he saw him, he was not sick and they had a good conversation.

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“Our brother John Kumah’s death has shocked me. The reason is this. I never saw him unwell. The last time I saw him, he was not sick, and we had a good conversation. When I heard he had died, I could not believe it. I called the Ashanti Regional Minister Simon Osei Mensah for clarification because I know he was good friends with John Kumah. He confirmed it. John Kumah is dead. I consoled him. All of us who know John Kumah have been hit by this,” Pratt said.

He added that he was even more disturbed by the rumours and allegations that Kumah was murdered by some unknown persons who poisoned him.

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“As I was still pondering on his demise, suddenly I heard rumours claiming he was murdered. Ah! Where from that too? There is even a gentleman who has come out to say he knows who killed John Kumah. So if you know who killed him, why have you not reported it? Why have you not reported it to the police? You claim to know who killed him, but won’t go and report it to the police.

So what at all is this? So in Ghana, no prominent person can die without being murdered? All of them have to be deliberately killed? I don’t understand. Must we politicize death, too? It is quite embarrassing. This is not the first time. Recently we had some big people claiming Professor Mills was also murdered and insisted on publicising his autopsy report. It is the same thing happening now,” Pratt lamented.

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The real reason behind John Kumah’s death has been questioned by some recent statements from Captain Smart, a TV presenter, and Oheneba Asiedu, a friend of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Ashanti Regional Chairman, Chairman Wontumi.

A common theme running through these submissions on John Kumah’s death is the claim that Kumah and Wontumi were poisoned some months ago in Tamale by some people who wanted to eliminate them for political reasons.

Resurfaced video excerpts of Captain Smart on his Maakye show on Onua TV, alleging the intentional poisoning of the late John Kumah.

He also claimed that there were attempts to poison other important people, such as Hon. Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the former Majority Leader and MP for Suame; Hon. Andy Appiah Kubi, the MP for Asante-Akim North Constituency; and Chairman Wontumi, the NPP Ashanti Regional Chairman.

However, these claims have been challenged by Kumah’s wife, Apostle Lilian Kumah, who has filed a complaint with the police and demanded evidence from Captain Smart to substantiate his allegations. She has also called for a thorough investigation into the cause of her husband’s death and urged the public to respect the family’s privacy and grief.

John Kumah was a lawyer and an entrepreneur who served as the first CEO of the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme (NEIP) before becoming the deputy finance minister and MP for Ejisu in 2021.

He was widely regarded as a man of integrity who championed job creation and youth development. He was also a preacher and a family man who left behind a wife and six children.

As Ghana grapples with this perplexing situation, one thing remains clear: John Kumah’s passing is shrouded in uncertainty. Was it natural causes or foul play? The nation awaits an answer.

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