Tarkwa, Ghana – A 62-year-old illegal miner, John Tandoh, known as Kojo Egyaguma, who is accused of pouring a liquid suspected to be acid on his former girlfriend, Victoria Salamatu Safia, has been remanded into prison custody by the Tarkwa District Magistrate Court.
The accused faces charges of causing harm, although his plea has not yet been taken. He is scheduled to reappear before the court on Thursday, November 9, 2023.
Prosecutor Sergeant Patrick Essien informed the court, presided over by Mr Charles Owusu Nsiah, that both the accused and the victim resided in Prestea and had worked together as partners in an illegal mining site in the area for about a year.
According to Sergeant Essien, the two were initially in a romantic relationship but had recently been experiencing disputes without any provocation. Due to the change in Tandoh's behaviour, Victoria decided to end the relationship.
On October 20, 2023, at approximately 7:00 a.m., the couple went to their usual mining site to prospect for gold. However, a disagreement arose between them while working, leading Tandoh to leave the site temporarily.
A few minutes later, Tandoh returned to the scene with a bowl covered in a polythene bag, and Victoria thought he had brought food. Instead, he attacked her and poured the suspected acid over her head, face, and other parts of her body. The victim sustained severe burns and cried out for help.
A witness working nearby rushed to the scene and tried to apprehend Tandoh. In response, Tandoh pulled out a kitchen knife, threatened to stab the witness, and fled.
Victoria was immediately taken to the Prestea Government Hospital, where she is currently receiving treatment.
The accused was arrested on the same day at about 2:30 pm from his hiding place by a Good Samaritan and subsequently handed over to the Prestea police.
Preliminary investigations revealed that Tandoh had previously been sentenced to 15 years for a similar offence in 2012 by the Tarkwa Circuit Court. However, he was discharged on amnesty in June 2020 after serving 8 years of his sentence.