General News of Saturday, 10 November 2018
The Inspector General of Police, David Asante Apeatu, says it was not the intention of his officers, deployed to control rioting residents along the Madina-Adentan highway, to harm anyone.
He said their sole purpose there was to protect lives and property and it was unfortunate that some people got hurt in the process.
“It is one of our mandates to protect lives and property and that is exactly the reason why we were here. We only came here to fire at anyone or cause any disaffection of the people.
“We came here to maintain law and order and prevent people from causing damage to government property,” he added.
Mr Asante Apeatu’s defence comes after the police officers were accused of manhandling protestors on the Madina-Adentan highway after a student was knocked by a taxi driver on Thursday.
The first-year student of the West African Senior School (WASS) was going to school when the speeding driver knocked and killed her instantly.
Residents along the highway who have been calling for work on some six footbridges on the highway to be completed went into an instant rage.
They blocked the highway on all sides and burnt tyres, causing hours of traffic and inconvenience to motorists.
Police arrived at the scene and in their bid to control the crowd fired gunshots. A mother and son who were on their way home were hit by the stray bullets.
The bullets went through their vehicle while they innocently while they attempted to use another route to avoid the traffic on the WASS section of the highway.
Videos shared by some residents on social media during the riots also showed police officers beating, cashing residents and threatening to shoot them.
But the IGP says his officers were simply doing their job. He said his officers were only there to maintain law and order.
Meanwhile, police officers have been deployed to various sections of the highway to assist motorists and pedestrians and to prevent any more deaths.
The streetlights have also been fixed and the government has awarded contracts for the completion of all six footbridges along the highway.