The Police Administration has outlined measures to curtail the potential rise in criminal activities during the two-week national load-shedding exercise.
The measures include increase in police visibility and constant police patrols of various places, especially crime-prone areas.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic in Accra Wednesday, the Accra Regional Police Public Relations Officer, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Freeman Tettey, said the measures were aimed at protecting lives and property during the exercise.
The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) yesterday released a timetable for the emergency load-shedding exercise.
According to the Volta River Authority (VRA), the load-shedding exercise had been occasioned by the erratic supply of gas from the West African Gas Pipeline (WAGP).
The WAGP, inaugurated during the Obasanjo administration, is an initiative of four ECOWAS member countries, including Ghana, Benin, Togo and Nigeria.
The pipeline is to supply gas from the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline to feed gas-fired power plants in the four countries.
Nigeria is contractually obligated to supply Ghana 100 million standard cubic feet per day (mscf/d). However, the volumes have dropped to 40mscf/d.
The shortfall has caused electricity regulators in Ghana to embark on a load-shedding exercise, dropping the power supply by 100 megawatts during peak periods between 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Measures aimed at ensuring safety
Mr Tettey said in Accra, for instance, “we have an elaborate security plan in place to deal with the potential rise in criminal activities and ensure safety. We have enough security personnel on the ground who have been assigned to regular patrolling in various communities”.
According to him, although the measures were not going to be different from previous plans to boost security in national crisis, the police would not relent in their efforts at safeguarding peace and safety in the country.
Mr Tettey said although it was the primary duty of the police to ensure peace and safety, there was the need for the public to give its unflinching support and assistance to the police to deal with criminal activities.
“The public must make sure that it supports the work of the police by reporting any criminal activities in the various communities. During the period, the public must know the timetable to enable them to keep an eye on their properties. This will go a long way to assist the police in the discharge of their duties,” he said.
During the load-shedding period, Mr Tettey encouraged the public to join groups such as community watch committees to enable them to report any suspected acts of crime in their vicinities.
He, however, advised the public to be prompt in accessing police services by calling the police crime fighters’ hotlines on 773906 and 18555 for Vodafone and MTN customers.