The politicisation of the Ghana Police Service is making it difficult for the Ashanti Regional Police Commander, DCOP Kofi Boakye, to effectively combat crime in an “increasingly dangerous and insecure environment”, Dr Kwesi Aning, a security analyst at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) has noted.
According to him, the Ashanti Regional Police Commander has mettle as far as the fight against crime is concerned. However, the incessant pressure and threats of dismissal and transfers from politicians against him and other police officers who are firm in their duties, are the main challenges confronting the work of the police in Ghana.
The Ashanti regional capital, Kumasi, within a week, has witnessed two deadly armed robbery attacks. Over the weekend, one person was shot dead and two others sustained severe injuries when three suspected robbers, who reportedly wielded AK47 assault rifles, invaded a house at Ahenema Kokoben New Site, and fired gunshots indiscriminately before making away with GHS4,000 and mobile phones.
The attack came on the heels of a similar one on a policeman with the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) unit of the Ghana Police Service in the Ashanti Region. He was shot dead at Open Space Hotel at Denkyembuoso, Kumasi, on Thursday.
In an interview on Monday May 23, Dr Aning noted that the Police know all the strategies in combating these criminals “but it is the meddling by politicians that makes it impossible for them to protect you and [me]”.
He said: “Mr Kofi Boakye is fighting an increasingly dangerous and insecure environment with his arms almost tied behind his back. That is where the challenge is. Let us release his hand and I can assure you, knowing my dear friend Kofi Boakye, he will be able to respond to these challenges and the Ghana Police Service will be able to respond,” adding: “More often than not when he does his work right, it is politicised and people want to get him sacked. It is not with logistics and men and women, it is about political meddling by DCEs and MCEs who, when the Police do proper work, they threaten to get them sacked or transferred.
Dr Aning revealed that there had been several attempts by politicians to get DCOP Kofi Boakye removed from office in spite of his professionalism.
“Whenever Mr Kofi Boakye does something people will be demonstrating and calling on Mr President to sack him. When you have undue political meddling in the performance of professional service, people become cautious and particularly in an election year,” he stated.