Our police officers have not demonstrated readiness to be armed at all levels-BPS

The Bureau of Public Safety has called on the Police Council to halt an announced measure to arm personnel of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service.

Speaking at the family house of L/Cpl Awal at Abuakwa in Kumasi, Vice President Bawumia, who is also Chairman of the Police Council, consoled the families of all the slain police officers.

Government, Vice President Bawumia announced, has ordered the police administration to equip all officers of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) with weapons when on duty in a bid to provide greater protection to the men and women of the Service.

As well, all officers who go on “outside duties” including snap checks, guard duty at banks and filling stations will now be issued with weapons, bulletproof vests and helmets to be able to protect themselves.

“Just this week, 4,500 bulletproof vests have been delivered to the Police to help stem these unfortunate incidents. I urge police officers to wear the bulletproof vests and not say that they are uncomfortable to wear. Other logistical items have been delivered to the Police including non-lethal weapons. The government will continue to support the Police and more logistics will be delivered soon. We must protect our police for them to be able to protect us.

“We are retooling the Service and Government has delivered 567 vehicles to the Police service since 2017. We have also given clearance for the recruitment of 4000 officers into the Service to boost the numbers.”

However, the Bureau of Public Safety says the decision should not be implemented.

In an interview with Kwabena Agyapong on Frontline on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, Nana Yaw Akwada said providing arms and ammunition to all MTTD personnel without first equipping them with the requisite soft skills and also educating or informing citizens about police expectations and the potential repercussions that may accrue from ignoring them will only aggravate an already conflictive interaction between police and citizens.

He said Ghanaian police officers in Ghana do not apply per standard procedures in dealing with matters.

He noted the police have not demonstrated to have the temperance, discipline and the standard police procedures for them to be armed at all levels.

Mr. Akwada stressed on the need for the police to be well equipped with the needed logistics to work with coupled with modernised training.

By: Rashid Obodai Provencal

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