Accra, March 05, GNA – Mr David Asante-Apeatu, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), has called for everybody to take a stand on political vigilantism – reject any political party encouraging this.
“Political parties claim they do not sponsor vigilantism and that individuals do, but it is my firm believe that if all of us say that whichever party has such a group will not get any vote, they will stop”.
“It will also make the work of the Police Administration less difficult.
“All of us must take that decision because if what we are seeing now metamorphose into another stage it will be so difficult to reverse.”
The IGP made the call when he appeared before the Justice Emile Short Commission, inquiring into the Ayawaso West Wuogon parliamentary ny-election violence.
He said “I am happy the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has come out to say that if political parties are unable to solve the problem, he will initiate a legislation to stop the militia menace”.
Ending political vigilantism was something that was dear to his heart and the Police Administration had taken steps towards that.
The police service had already started fixing banners at all of its offices to help educate people about the threat the vigilante groups were posing to the nation’s democracy.
The Church of Pentecost was supporting the effort and he invited civil society to join the campaign.
Mr. Asante-Appeatu, who is a ballistic expert, told the Commission that marks on walls at the scene violence were not bullet marks.
Regarding those on trees, he said, he had directed the firearms examiner to conduct further investigation.
“I do not want to pass a judgement because the kind of the ammunition the police were using should have stuck into the tree.”
He added that if indeed there was sporadic shooting people would have lost their lives.
Answering questions on the use of transfer as punishment for police officers who went tough on political actors, the IGP said any officer could be transferred to anywhere to serve.
As part of measures to boost the confidence of the police, to get them to perform – to be bold, firm and even-handed, he had met with all Regional Commanders.