The President of the Republic has expressed disappointment in some ‘unpatriotic’ persons who have sought to circulate and present old videos of alleged police brutalities as though they happened recently during the enforcement of restrictions order.
According to President Akufo-Addo, though there are a few genuine instances where security personnel have used excessive force against the citizenry, those incidences of widespread fabrication must be brought to a halt since it will impede the strides being made towards the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The subject of police brutalities has dominated conversations on how personnel in the security agencies are enforcing the lockdown or imposition of restrictions order in some parts of the country.
Many civilians have accused the police and military officers of using excessive force in implementing the stay at home order and in one instance, a resident of Ashiaman who was allegedly dealing in narcotics was ‘accidentally’ gunned down by a military officer during an altercation.
The Police hierarchy has in different media engagements maintained that most of the videos, however, are fabricated to make the security agencies look bad.
Commenting on the issue during his fifth televised Address to the Nation, President Akufo-Addo said the practice of spreading false news with the aim of creating discontent and undermining the trust of the public in policing must end.
“…I am extremely disturbed by the actions of a few, unpatriotic persons, who are deliberately passing off and circulating old videos of alleged brutality by members of the security agencies, largely of foreign origin, and presenting them as though they were new incidents by Ghanaian security personnel, which have occurred during the course of this past week.”
“It is sad, it is unfortunate, and it must end. We should all be in this fight together, and there is nothing to be gained with widespread fabrication and distribution of such videos, whose sole aim is to create discontent and undermine the trust of the population in the men and women of our security services. Who gains from such conduct? Nobody in their right senses! The law enforcement agencies are determined to locate the originators of these anti-social acts,” President Akufo-Addo said.
The President also mentioned that so far, reports he has received confirms to him that the security agencies are delivering their mandate with ‘considerable professionalism.’
“Reports I have received so far indicate that the police, military and other members of our security services have discharged their mandate with considerable professionalism. Furthermore, working with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, we see personnel of the Ghana Armed Forces involved in the clean-up of our drainage systems and of our markets.”
“In the very few instances where members of our security agencies have employed the use of excessive force against the citizenry, in enforcing the restrictions on movement, the Inspector General of Police and the Chief of Defence Staff of the Armed Forces have taken steps to investigate such incidents, and, they have given me the assurance that those found culpable, will be duly sanctioned. Thus far, the alleged wrongdoers have been withdrawn from the ongoing exercise,” he said.