Albert Kan Dapaah, Minister for National Security
The Minister for National Security, Albert Kan Dapaah, has called on the police to deal ruthlessly with party foot-soldiers who are members of militant action groups that wreck havoc on innocent Ghanaians.
He said that the action of these groups, if not checked, could pose serious security threat to the nation.
“Mr Speaker, we must not mix criminality with politics,” he said, stressing that lawlessness ought to be punished according to the laws of the country.
The Minister made the call in Parliament on Thursday in response to a question by the minority chief whip, Alhaji Mohammed Muntaka Mubarak, who wanted to know whether the establishment and operation of vigilante appendages of political parties like ‘Invisible Forces’ and ‘Delta Forces’ were legal.
He said there was the urgent need for leaders of all political parties to come together and take measures to discourage the establishment and recognition of the action groups, whose activities are increasingly becoming a worry to many peace-loving Ghanaians.
“We must discourage the establishment and recognition of these groups in political structures in the interest of state security,” he said
He said as far as the law is concerned, there are no legally registered political vigilante groups in the country and therefore the state does not recognize any of these groups.
The Minister said the President was committed to stopping the activities of these political militant groups and had therefore instructed the Inspector-General of Police to swiftly arrest any persons or groups, who would terrorize innocent Ghanaians in the name of political parties.
The National Security Minister cautioned vigilante groups to stop their activities since they have no legal backing.
“Let’s get all such action groups to recognise that they are not to operate in the country and if they do, it will be taken as a law and order issue and they will have to go through the laws of the country as their punishment,” Mr Kan Dapaah told Parliament on Thursday.
He therefore urged Members of Parliament (MPs) and political actors to stop supporting such illegal groups in order to make the fight against them successful.
Mr Kan Dapaah said such vigilante groups were not recognised by law since they were not legally registered.
“I believe it is important that we stop the activities of all such groups, irrespective of what political party they are affiliated to; and I continue to urge the House to help us find a solution to this problem.
“I must repeat again, it has all the tendencies to create huge security problems for us in the future.
However, Mr Kan-Dapaah said efforts were being made to stop such groups, adding that “there are no legally registered vigilante groups in this country and for that matter, there are no such groups to be disbanded.
“Mr Speaker, we need to stop these groups because they have the tendency to degenerate into militant groups that can have serious repercussions on the security of this country. We must not mix criminality with politics, lawlessness must be punished.
He disclosed that the government, through the Inspector General of Police, would deal appropriately with members of the criminal groups.
By Thomas Fosu Jnr