SECURITY CONCERNS IN USE OF GUNS BY POLICE, UNLICENSED OKADA AND BUS STOP MARKETS …
The visibility program of the Ghana Police Service introduced by the former Inspector General of Police Mohammed Alhassan and being experimented over a few years now has done Ghana a world of good to Ghana. We don’t need a scientific proof to know that the visibility program has boosted security in the city center and suburbs of our capital city Accra and along our highways and some major towns of the nation. Before the exercise, we suffered increasing armed in town and highway robberies. However the sight of the police and open display of their weapons and vehicles has kept the criminals away for the time being. Though the situation is a lot better now an aspect of the exercise has led to the police providing arms to some young police constables who man vantage points like banks and other important vantage points. Some of the guns used by these police men are sophisticated ones like AK 47 and other such guns. These police men are often seen wielding these guns as they walk along the streets and on motor bikes and on board tro-tro vehicles. On the quiet many people young and old who have got frightened on seeing the gun wielding police young-men are asking for something to be done about it. They expect the police to be armed with pistols or given guns while in police patrol vehicles but not when they roam freely on our streets markets and on tro-tro. They fear that the gun wielding police could misuse them at least provocation as done in the nation recently and in the US where some police men shot dead some black men. Another thing to be considered is the wrong use of beautifully built bus stops along side Achimota from Kwame Nkrumah Circle. the bus stops at old Achimota and Pokuase are so beautiful that they have began attracting not only persons waiting to board vehicles but also traders who have taken them over and are selling various items including food stuff. The Ga East and west District assemblies must be up and doing by making sure that they relocate these market mummies to markets nearby and allow the new bus stops to play the roles for which they were built. The exercise of relocating these market mammies could be done with the help of the police. Okada which is the use of motor bikes in carrying people for a fee has also become so popular these days. Though it helps people in travelling to remote and difficult terrains in our country, most of those operating them do so without going through the legal processes of riding motor bikes. Some of the motor bikes are not registered let alone get them insured. Most of these riders do not use helmet let alone provide their passengers with helmets. The Ghana police has began arresting and prosecuting some of the offenders but more needs to be done. To deal with the issue the motor business must be legalized. Thereafter the ministry of transport police must take steps to educate the operators and members of the public on what to do as Okada drivers and passengers. This way all those involved in them would enjoy using them especially now that we are preparing for the presidential and parliamentary elections when their services will be most needed,
By Alhaji Alhasan Abdulai
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