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General News of Friday, 19 June 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Missing cocaine saga: Akufo-Addo must intervene in GRA, NACOC impasse – Security analyst

Security analyst, Adam Bonaa says President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo must intervene in the ongoing impasse between the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority and the Narcotics Control Commission over a supposed 100.10 grams of suspected cocaine, seized at the Aflao Border post which has been reported missing.

According to Mr. Bonaa this development which has caused a situation of accusations and speculations requires the intervention of the president.

This according, to him, is necessary owing to the role of the institutions on the security of the nation and the resulting effects of the current situation.

He added that with the involved institutions falling under ministries within the security hierarchy of the nation, it is important that the president who chairs the national security council overseeing the national security operations steps in.

“We know NACOC comes under the Ministry of Interior and the GRA comes under the Ministry of Finance and so we need a superior body like the office of the president. Because by law the president chairs the National Security Council and the joint security council comes under the National Security Council. So I am expecting that the president would have to act swiftly,” he said in an interview with GhanaWeb.

Bonaa added that he believes it is the GRA and its customs officials who need to answer for the missing suspected cocaine since the actions of its officers according to reports raise questions on their mandate and how they executed it.

“My point is what has narcotics seized by NACOC got to do with the GRA? If the GRA even seized it they need to pass it on to NACOC. Eventually, some prosecution would have to happen but that did not take place. So it means that the joint intelligence operation that we have where all the security services need to work together based on an act put together, the communication didn’t go well in this situation.

"I would say that NACOC handled it the way it should be handled. Because if NACOC did not come out and this came out, per the law NACOC is supposed to be keeping these drugs and ensuring that they are tested and properly disposed of off when the courts give a directive. But unfortunately, the GRA kept it, and it's not under their mandate. It is not under the mandate of the GRA to keep drugs, theirs is to ensure that drugs are impounded,” he added.

He mentioned that looking at the genesis of the whole issue, there is the need for someone from the GRA to come clean on the issue owing to the level of questionable circumstances in which the suspected drug went missing.

The security analyst also emphasised that the nation risk being turn into a nation of illegal drug peddling and may face the consequences if the disconnect in the joint security intelligence operation revealed by the missing cocaine saga is not appropriately resolved.

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