NPP should laud police boldness over arrest of party agents – security expert

A security expert has entreated the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) to desist from vilifying the police over the arrest of some party agents for allegedly inciting violence post-December 7 elections.

Dr Kwesi Aning said the police administration should be commended for applying the law evenly in the country.

Speaking to Evans Mensah, host of Joy FM’s Top Story programme Wednesday, the Head of Research Department at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) said, “NPP operatives must feel proud that under [their] administration the police have been bold.”

The police have arrested 16 people in connection with post-election violence and seizures of state institutions in the country.

Youth suspected to be supporters of the governing party massed up at premises of state institutions to drive out workers. The incidents took place in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Northern, Central and Greater Accra Regions.

In the Brong Ahafo Region, NPP First Vice Chairman in Bechem, Alex Asare and five others were arrested for masterminding the seizure of public toilets in the region.

Mr Asare is said to have led one Justice Appiah to forcibly take over three toilet facilities at Derma near Bechem.

According to police, Mr Asare’s wife, Yaa Achia also attacked one Veronica Owusu, who was managing one of the toilet facilities. In the scuffle, Mrs Owusu is reported to have lost two of her teeth and some strands of her Rasta plaited hair.

The NPP has not been pleased with development resulting in a press briefing held to caution the police to be mindful of their actions.

NPP General Secretary, Nana Obiri Boahen told the media in Accra Wednesday that police could not jerk up to its functions when there is an issue involving “suspected NPP supporters and sympathisers.”

He called on the police to be even-handed in their dealing with crime in the country, adding some suspected National Democratic Congress (NDC) members alleged to have stoned the residence of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo should also face the law.

Although he bemoaned the behaviour of the police during erstwhile President John Mahama’s government, Dr Aning said what they need is support.

‘We are hoping that this administration will have the more nuanced understanding of the operation of the police particularly security agencies so that party agents will not misbehave,” he said.

He said it would be to the credit of the President if NPP appointees are told to desist from “threatening statutory security agencies with dismissal.”

“It is contingent on the president and the vice president [Dr Mahamudu Bawumia] to send a signal to party agents that there are procedures and processes for redress,” he said, adding statements made by Mr Boahene were “most unfortunate.”