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General News of Thursday, 30 August 2007

Source: Ghanaian Times

68 Police Officers Fired

Sixty eight police officers have been dismissed from the Police Service so far this year for gross misconduct. These include 10 dismissals in August alone. The acting Director of the Police Public Affairs Directorate, Samuel Kwesi Ofori, disclosed this to the Times yesterday after the Inspector General of Police had held an emergency meeting with officers of the Police Motor Traffic Transport Unit.

Gross misconduct is breaking the rules or not following the laid down regulations.The August dismissals include two senior officers, Superintendent Osei Assibey Ahenkan, Akropong, Divisional Commander and Assistant Superintendent of Police Stephen Anane Boye Tetteh, Akosombo District Commander. The two officers, as well as Constables Bright Odoi Nkansah and Raphael Batsa, were alleged to have intercepted two cars loaded with contraband cigarettes at the Atimpoku Toll Bridge but failed to forward the car carrying the goods to the Police Headquarters.

The six others alleged to have deserted their post and gone to Axim to escort cocaine allegedly dumped there by dealers. They are: General Constables Dennis Agyemang, Mensah Gray, Gideon Sakabitu George Obuobi and Lance Corporals Daniel Kagya and Ebenezer Quao Afachao. General Constable Daniel Mensah who was alleged to be part of the team that went to Axim was acquitted and discharged because it was found that he was genuinely on leave and also, no weapon was found on him whereas his colleges went there with weapons. Quoting the IGP, he said that the Police Administration will not shelve or compromise on any personnel or officer who will fall foul against the regulations of the Service.

In recent times, the Police Service has come under serious criticism from the public over the misconduct of some officers and he said if not checked such actions will dent the image and reputation of the service. He said last year, a total of 66 Police officers as against 49 in 2005 and 12 in 2004, respectively were dismissed from the service for gross misconduct which included extortion, bribery and abuse of human rights including assault. DSP Ofori noted that the Police Administration has taken a serious look at the behaviours, operations and activities of personnel of the service saying that “the Police Administration will leave no stone unturned in the discharge of its duties.”

Touching on the IGP’s meetings with the personnel of the Police MTTU, he said the Police administration will deal ruthlessly with any personnel of that unit who engages in unlawful practices. He spoke about complaints from drivers about tactics used by some policemen to force them to offer them bribes. These include the removal or collection of roadworthy stickers’ vehicle licences and insurance stickers. DSP Ofori said the IGP has charged officers to relay messages to their subordinates to desist from such acts and warned drivers to also desist from giving money to policemen when they are arrested.

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