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General News of Thursday, 7 May 2015


Mob justice “barbaric”, smacks of jungle dwelling – Police

Lynching of crime suspects is not only “barbaric”, but also betrays a “jungle” mentality in the Ghanaian society, the Ghana Police Service has said.

Spokesperson Superintendent Cephas Arthur told Morning Starr’s Kafui Dey on Starr 103.5FM on Thursday that: “I can say that it is barbaric and it smacks of a life in the jungle.”

Mob justice has become a subculture in Ghana. Crime suspects are either beaten to a pulp before they are dragged, in near-lifeless unconsciousness to the Police station. In worst cases, they are burnt alive or cudgeled to death summarily.

However, an academic paper titled ‘mob justice in Ghana’ written by Samuel Obeng, has revealed that 2 out of every 3 suspects lynched were innocently killed.

Criminologist, Professor Ken Attefuah has, in the past, narrated on radio, how he was almost beaten by a mob that mistook him for a crime suspect.

According to Superintendent Arthur, “There can be no justification for why anybody can take the law into his own hands and try to mete out punishment to people that they suspect – and the word suspect is very crucial in this context – to have committed and offence.”

He said: “Frankly speaking it is mindboggling, and as I said, it is barbaric because we are a human society and for that matter not living in the jungle with the wilds where there is the survivor of the fittest.”

“Here because we must live as human beings in harmony, there are laws and regulations that govern our activities and we have to resort to the law to settle our differences.”