The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has expressed grave concern about the recent upsurge in motor accidents on the country’s roads.
He has, therefore, called on the police and other stakeholders to, as a matter of urgency, devise a strategy to help curtail the scourge.
Addressing police personnel at the 2017 West African Security Services Activities (WASSA) celebration in Accra last Friday, Dr Bawumia said the country was losing its workforce to preventable road accidents.
He noted, however, that the Police Administration had persisted in its effort to achieve monumental feats and commended the personnel for their dedication to duty and resilience in the execution of their mandate.
He also commended the police for the sacrifices they had been making with very scarce logistics and under very trying conditions, as well as their efforts to keep communities safe.
Dr Bawumia thanked the country’s development partners, particularly those who had been supporting the Ghana Police Service in terms of training, capacity building, logistics and equipment towards the execution of their mandate.
“I make special mention of the US government for supporting the training of the Formed Police Unit, the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre for the series of security sector reform courses, including gender and peace support operations,” he said.
He said security had become a top priority globally, saying it was only mutual trust and co-operation that would make the world safe for all, adding that that was not to say that the work had been done.
He encouraged the police to strengthen their intelligence apparatus to engender more proactive policing and also urged them to continue to pursue the cause of professionalism in all their operations, particularly in public order operations, to ensure infraction-free operation and utmost respect for the rights of people.
“Our gratitude and sympathies go to the families of the gallant men and women lost in the course of duty through unwarranted attacks by some criminals,” Dr Bawumia said, adding: “You made your fallen officers proud by the speed and dispatch with which you pursued the perpetrators of such heinous crimes that resulted in their arrest.”
For his part, the Minister of the Interior, Mr Ambrose Dery, commended the police for rising to the occasion during the upsurge in violent crimes around January and February this year, which had brought a sense of safety to Ghanaians.
He expressed regret at the recent attacks on journalists by the police and called for more police-media interaction to enable the media to better understand the operations of the police.
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr David Asante-Apeatu, said the celebration of WASSA had become part of the culture of the police, during which they took stock of their operations in the preceding year, with a view to reviewing the lessons learnt and charting a new path into the next year.
He said the success of the Ghana Police Service depended on the competence and professionalism of officers and urged personnel to step up their game by keeping the vision of the service continuously in sight.
On peacekeeping, the IGP said there was no gainsaying the fact that the Police Service had carved a niche for itself in the international community since 1960 when the first peacekeepers were deployed to Congo, saying the service was still committed to maintaining world peace and security.
He noted that the commitment of the Vice-President and Chairman of the Police Council could not be over-emphasised and expressed the hope that he (Vice-President) would keep up his support for the service to fully actualise the government’s objectives.