Agbogloshie clash: Security agencies’ strategy ‘unsatisfactory’ – Ayine

Former Deputy Attorney General, Dr Dominic Ayine, has described as unsatisfactory the attitude of police and other security agencies in responding to the Agbogloshie clash last Tuesday

He said the security agencies could conduct post investigations to unearth the cause of the conflict, however, the team of police and military personnel failed when they did not move in when the violence was heated.

Dr Ayine who was speaking on Joy FM/MultiTV’s news analysis programme Newsfile on Saturday said, “But staying away from the crime scene or not taking control after a crime has been committed is something that we should not tolerate from our security agencies.”

Reports that came through during the clashes accused the police of acting late and staying outside the perimeter where the attacks were ongoing, allegedly gathering intelligent.

Residents told Joy News’ Favour Nunoo that by the time police got to the scene things were already out of hand with two people dead and some people suffering various degrees of knife wounds.

Dean of Graduate Studies, Institute of Local Government, Dr Oduro Osae

Contributing to the discussion, governance expert, Dr Oduro Osae agreed that it was a clear failure of intelligence on the part of the security agencies adding “Security moves with intelligence…and I was expecting them to put some intelligence on the ground.

Nonetheless, he said the security agencies must look beyond Agbogloshie and put in place measures to curb and control a similar situation if it is to happen anywhere else in the capital. 

“Intelligence have failed us in the last few days considering the case of Delta Force attack could have been prevented with good intelligence on the ground. 

“They should have their game between intelligence and coordination…it is unfortunate they reported late but I want to believe that they are learning their lesson so there is proper coordination between intelligence and security if any such incident should happen,” he added. 

The Dean of Graduate Studies at the Institute of Local Government believes isolating an area as a risky zone or the history in gathering intelligence makes them easy to deal with in the event of a clash of such nature. 

Media reportage

Dr Dominic Ayine also believes the media could have done better in its reportage. 

He said the media did not look at the immediate cause, which is the case of a mobile phone theft by a Dagomba young who from a Konkomba lady.

The alleged phone thief, who was beaten in the cause of retrieving the phone, went to call people from his ethnic group to attack those who beat him.

“I am not blaming them [media] but their reportage was not very helpful as they characterised it as a war between Dagombas and Konkombas, without looking at the immediate cause that has led to the situation,” he said.

He said the media escalated the issue by characterising it as an ethnic conflict between the two ethnic groups.

According to him, that kind of report can mislead the security agencies as they would not focus on the immediate cause and deal with it as a crime.

He said although the two groups are noted for fighting each other, it was an unjustified stereotype to look at the broad issue rather than the case at hand.