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Opinions of Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Columnist: Abass, Tonduogu Musah

The alarming rate of armed robbery in the Sissalaland is a cause for concern

By: Abass, Tonduogu Musah

Of late, there have been frequent cases of armed robbery in the Sissalaland. This unfortunate development have left many people in fear and panic. Lives have been lost and businesses have collapsed due to this criminals who operate under mask or in darkness.

The sad tendency to commit armed robbery by the jobless and undesirable youth, who operate at anytime, anywhere and on anybody has reached a level where a every lover of peace, security, growth and development in the Sissalaland can not keep mute. One major responsibility of a competent and capable government is to provide peace and security for its citizens. And as such there is the need to alert the appropriate agencies when the need be.

At the moment, armed robbers are in their huge numbers in the Sissalaland and they operate at anytime of the day. They attack people on our roads, rob them of their valuable items and money and sometimes they even kill innocent people. It's important to note that one can not predict where and when they will strike.

Just last week, a gang of armed robberies shot into two buses that were heading to Leo in Burkina Faso from Tumu. They robbed the passengers of their valuables and monies, left two women dead and several others injured. Two days later, another incident of armed robbery occurred on the Jeffisi-Wa highway in the morning with several passengers robbed of their valuables and monies which left many stranded. In fact, some victims who spoke to our community radio station, RADFORD FM said almost all the robbers who numbered up to 7 were all with different kind of guns. As if these were not enough, these robbers on Saturday, 25th February, robbed another group of market women who were returning from a newly created market at Bawiesibelle, a
community which is about 70km from the district capital, Tumu and hometown of former national best farmer, Alhaji Akate. These robbers took all valuables and an amount of money running into hundred thousands of Ghana cedis from these petty traders. The armed robbers again left the traders stranded.

These criminals used to operate during raining seasons but have suddenly changed their time and mode of operations.

Nevertheless, the Ghana police service have since taken some steps including daily patrols to curb this scary monster. Some investigations are also been done by the police service. The community radio station is also doing its best to educate the people on the various security measures vis-Ã -vis the current terrible situation in the area.

That not withstanding I would like to suggest to the Ghana Police Service some possible solutions to the current situation.

The Sissala East district alone has about 60 communities. As of now, the district has very few police stations with extremely few police staff. This makes the work of the few police officers very difficult and hence the need to provide the district with more police personnel. As a matter of urgency, more police personnel are needed in the Sissalaland.

In addition, both the Sissala East and West districts police personnel need adequate logistics such as motorcycles, cars among others to make their patrolling activities effective. Tents should also be provided to them to put up temporal posts at vantage points especially places where these syndicates operate and in areas where the police service cannot easily be reached.

More importantly, the creation of at least two police posts especially in areas that are faraway from the police stations in addition to the current ones would be another great solution to this terrible situation. Its very pathetic to note that some community members make a journey of about 70km just to make a police report.

Bawiesibelle, Nabulo, Gwosi, Mwanduonu, Sumboru among others are classical examples. The Nabulo community for instance, needs a police station and that of Mwanduonu also needs one.

As an indigene and native of the Sissalaland, I believe strongly that if the above suggested measures are taken seriously, this current terrible situation if not curbed but would be reduced to the barest minimum.

I would like to use this opportunity to congratulate and welcome the current
Inspector General of Police(IGP), COP David Asante Apeatu to his new office and also plead with him to as a matter of urgency come to our aid as no development can take place without peace and security.

Tonduogu Musah Abass
A Passionate Advocate for Peace and Development in the Sissalaland.