Minority calls for probe into police brutality

The Minority New Patriotic Party (NPP) in parliament has stated that the call by President John Mahama for the Police Adminis­tration to investigate die brutality against innocent Ghanaians who were peacefully demonstrating for a new voter register to be compiled before next year’s general elections, is completely misplaced.

The minority therefore wants the government to rather institute a com­mission of enquiry into the brutality, because it believes such a commis­sion would come out with fair and more credible recommendations.

In a statement signed by the minority leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah- Bonsu, the NPP questioned the rationale and motive for police inves­tigations after the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Alhassan and the Director-General of Opera­tions, COP John Kudalor, had pub­licly justified the action by the police.

“We would like to commend the president for condemning the police brutality on innocent Ghanaians, but his call for internal departmental enquiry would be specious and self- serving,” the minority said, adding that in the face of such categorical assertion by the Ghana Police Service, it would be difficult for them (police) to make adverse findings against itself.

It is in the light of this that NPP said it was calling on President Mahama to rather institute a commis­sion of enquiry to investigate the inci­dent since that would have a broader jurisdiction to investigate all issues regarding the demonstration as well as the maltreatment and come out with appropriate and comprehensive recommendations.

The minority further explained that the commission of enquiry would also make the victims and other participants feel free to give evidence when they appear before it.

“In the case of the police enquiry, victims will not feel comfortable to give evidence and that will be bereft of adequate evidence of what actually happened to enable the panel make credible and acceptable findings,” the statement asserted.

The minority leader noted victims of this brutish force as well as other participants will detest the idea of appearing before a panel of the perpetrators of their bodily injuries and this will eventually end up in a waste of public funds.

The recommendations of the commission must include a possible review of the Public Order Act to be more in conformity with the Consti­tution and democratic tenets since the police have been using the courts to thwart prospective demonstrations without any recourse to the Constitu­tion and also refusing to discuss such court actions with leaders of prospec­tive demonstrations.

“We will like to add our voice to that of our flagbearer, Nana Akufo- Addo, and other well-meaning Ghanaians who have objectively spo­ken to the issue and called for the appointment of a commission of enquiry which we think will serve the best interest of all Ghanaians,” the statement pointed out.

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