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General News of Friday, 7 October 2016

Source: ultimatefmonline.com

We’ll treat vigilante groups as criminals - Police

The Public Relations Officer of the Northern Regional Police Command Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Ebenezer Tetteh has warned to deal ruthlessly with vigilante groups which will cause mayhem during December polls in the region.

He promised to treat vigilante groups who will take the law into their hands as common criminals, warning political parties not to intervene on the former’s behalf when they are arrested.

Speaking on Abusua FM’s Abusua Nkommo hosted by Kwame Adinkrah, he reminded political parties of their resolve to disown vigilante groups in Ada months ago.

Yesterday people ran helter- skelter when sporadic gunshots were heard in Tamale during the votes transfer as a result of political parties busing their supporters.

ASP Tetteh said they are prepared to ensure that security is maintained before, during and after the election and that vigilante groups will be dealt with irrespective of their political affiliations.

‘With all these happenings, we hope people will not take the laws into their own hands because we are prepared to do everything within our means to ensure that the election here is peaceful. In 2012, we were able to marshal our resources with support from the national headquarters and our sister security agencies, and were able to work on our intelligence, we scattered the whole place with our officers, ….

The message that we are sending to the political parties is they have for instance acceded to something at Aqua Safari in Ada, …if you care to know they have resolved to disown all the vigilante groups, and we have documents indicating that all the General Secretaries of the various political parties were present at that meeting,… so I am telling the vigilante groups that everything they do is not in support of the political parties because they have being disowned. We are going to treat them as common criminals, as any other person and we will do irrespective of whose horse is whipped, because what we must do to ensure confidence in the people is to treat people who commit crimes as common criminals, irrespective of the persons political affiliations,’ he warned.

ASP Tetteh bemoaned over the sophisticated weapons in the hands of some people in the area, describing it as a disturbing situation.

He wondered why such an exercise would generate into violence, saying the situation is alarming.

‘We heard gunshot but upon reaching there, those behind had escaped, we realised that the confusion heightened but we were able to calm down tension. They used sophisticated weapons,… we don’t want to speculate but it’s quite unfortunate, why should we be having problems on our hands over a simple exercise which has been going on over the years, but what we are seeing this year especially in our part of the region is very alarming,’ he expressed worry.