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Police administration distancing itself from DCOP Waabu’s comment shocking – John Mahama

2024 flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, has described as shocking, the decision by the police administration, to distance itself from election security-related comments made by DCOP Gabriel Prince Waabu, Director General in Charge of Research.

John Mahama, who was speaking at a durbar to mark the Ahmadiya Muslim Mission’s centenary celebration at Gomoa Pomadze in the Central Region, said after listening to the statement of the police capo, he finds it strange for the Service to dissociate itself from a statement of fact, and even go further to say DCOP Waabu, who is a member of the Police Management Board, will be subjected to internal discipline.

DCOP Gabriel Prince Waabu, who was speaking at the launch of Accra-based Joy FM’s 2024 elections coverage, said… “We’re not maybe going to involve the military, as it were, because it was not even the police that came out with this issue.

“So, it’s going to be only the Police, the Prisons, Fire and then Immigration that are going to conduct this election. They are going to support us; it is our baby,” he said.

DCOP Waabu further clarified in response to a follow-up question, adding, “Elections are internal matters over which the police have a clear-cut mandate. It’s a clear-cut issue. Every internal issue is the police duty, and that is for sure in place.”

He was apparently responding to concerns about violent incidents involving the elections security taskforce, with specific reference to the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-elections on January 31, 2019, and the killing of eight people in Techiman South during the 2020 elections.

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But that did not go well with the police administration, which has since apologized to the military.

The NDC flagbearer described the response by the police as unacceptable.

“If we must have a peaceful election, the security services must be neutral. That is why I find it strange — the decision to dissociate the Service from the statement by one of their own about the role of the military in elections. And I think he was right.

“The police have the primary responsibility of guaranteeing security for a free and fair election,” he noted.

Mahama further stated, “The Ghana Police Service is responsible for the National, Regional, and District Election Security Taskforce, and it’s their call to invite their sister security services to participate.

“And so, if somebody says election security is the baby of the police service, it’s true. It is their primary responsibility,” he added.

On the role of the military in ensuring internal peace and security, John Mahama said election security is not part of the immediate mandate of the Ghana Armed Forces.

“The military is called when the police cannot handle a situation, and so if somebody says election security is the baby of the police service, he is right, and I agree with him.

“It is the primary responsibility of the IGP and the police service to provide us with security and other security services to complement their efforts.

“The military is not supposed to be in polling centers or collation centers, but deployed to a safe location when the police cannot handle a situation,” he emphasized.


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