Crime & Punishment of Thursday, 1 May 2014
Forty-one suspected middlemen or 'goro boys' who allegedly issued fake drivers’ licences, roadworthy stickers and registration papers to customers of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) at its 37 Accra Regional Office in Accra have been arrested by the police.
The suspects, between the ages of 23 and 40, have been put behind bars at the Airport Police Station. The police carried out the swoop yesterday following a request by the management of the 37 DVLA Accra Regional office.
They arrested some suspected ‘goro boys’ in the course of the latter offering services to some customers. The police ignored customers' pleas for the release of the suspected ‘goro boys’.
Following the swoop, activities in and around the 37 DVLA Accra Regional Office went down drastically, as other ‘goro boys’ fled the area.
The DVLA was encouraged to call for the swoop following revelations of underhand dealings at DVLA offices by Tiger Eye investigations, in partnership with the Graphic Communications Group Limited (GCGL).
Eleven ‘goro boys’ were arrested at the DVLA office at Weija two weeks ago in a similar swoop.
The Airport Police Commander, Superintendent Yao Tettegah, told the Daily Graphic that the police would prosecute the suspects.
He said the swoop was the first in a series to rid the 37 DVLA office of ‘goro boys’.
"We want to clean the place of ‘goro boys’ who pick people's documents and end up giving them fake drivers’ licences. We will continue the exercise to make sure that all of them are cleared," he said.
Supt Tettegah advised the public to stop dealing with ‘goro boys’, since they risked receiving fake drivers’ licences and other documents.
The Accra Regional Manager of the DVLA, Mr. Noah Tetteh Matey, said the activities of the ‘goro boys’ disturbed the smooth operations of the authority, as they intercepted documents that were supposed to be sent to DVLA officials.
He said only one out of every 1,000 transactions of ‘goro boys’ went through the right channels at the DVLA office.
Mr. Matey said the ‘goro boys’ took documents and money from DVLA customers and ended up giving the customers fake drivers’ licences, roadworthy stickers and vehicle registration numbers.
As a result, he said, money that was supposed to go to state coffers found its way into the pockets of ‘goro boys’.
He warned that any DVLA official caught dealing with any ‘goro boy’ would also be arrested and dealt with according to the law.
The regional manager disagreed with a suggestion that the processes of acquiring registration documents and drivers’ licences were too cumbersome, which forced many people to opt for the services of ‘goro boys’.
He said the DVLA had introduced an online registration system for customers to access and fill their application forms in order to facilitate the documentation process.
He said customers would only present their invoices to the DVLA to begin the processes for licence acquisition, vehicle registration and vehicle roadworthy tests.