The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Accra Regional Police Command, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mrs Effia Tenge, has advised police officers in the Ghana Police Service to protect their personal image and that of the GPS as they performed their duties.
She said police officers, by their training, must be held in high esteem in the way they did things, stressing that: “The kind of things you do alone have a long way to talk about you and police officers should not step on the toes of the people.
“Don’t leave your image sinking as police officers. We are there to serve the public and we need to serve them well with truth and integrity. Let us revise our way of doing things and protect our hard-won reputation in society.”
Mrs Efia Tenge was addressing selected police officers from Akuapem North, Yilo Krobo, Asuogyaman in the Eastern Region and North Tongu in the Volta Region during a sensitisation workshop for police officers on Anti-Corruption at Star Villar at Kpong in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality.
The programme, which was on the theme: “Together against corruption”, was organised by Socioserve-Ghana, a non-governmental organisation (NGO), with funding from STAR-Ghana.
“Whenever and wherever we find ourselves as police officers, we communicate and, therefore, let us watch the way we communicate to the general public, scan the environment and know what to say where,’’ the police PRO added.
The participants were taken through topics such as manifestation of corruption, anti-corruption laws in Ghana, the police and the issue of corruption, mechanisms for reporting corruption and communication and corporate reputation under the police transformation agenda, among others.
The police PRO, who handled the topic “communication and corporate reputation under the police transformation agenda” at the workshop, said the police had a unique identity and their body language such as laughter, smiles, winks and the likes spoke volumes of messages, adding: “Since our service is with integrity, we must watch these things in our interactions with the public.”
She mentioned issues that affected police officers such as bail and fees, debt collection, police unlawful shooting, extortion, stealing, robbery, rape, crime in general and taking personal interest in cases investigated, and cautioned that the service would not condone and connive with officers who fell foul of the law.
Mrs Tenge said the training of the police officers alone was not enough but the background of police officers was key, saying “what society has given to the police service is what is going back to society”.
The Programmes Manager of the Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), Mrs Mary Addah, whose topic was on corruption, said it was very possible to fight corruption if everybody got involved and stressed the need for all stakeholders who had one role or the other to play to help erase the canker from the Ghanaian society.
She said apart from equipping the citizens to say no to corruption, law enforcement agencies and bodies should exhibit the highest level of integrity in the day-to-day performance of their duties in order not to be labelled as being corrupt.
Mrs Addah emphasised that the police must protect its motto: “Service with integrity”, and redeem its image when dealing with the public in a way that would not create room for suspicion.
Mrs Rita Ntoso Ofoe, the Programmes Manager of Socioserve-Ghana, said one of the aims of the programme was to team up with the junior ranks of the Ghana Police Service to change the narrative of the police being perceived to be corrupt.
She said the project was tackling corruption that dealt with traffic regulations and also how swiftly and transparently cases that were reported were dealt with.