Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) Dr Benjamin Agordzo, Director, Transformation of Ghana Police Service has called for constitutional reforms in the appointment of future Inspector General of Police (IGP) to make their positions independent from political control.
CSP Agordzo said the reforms should allow the IGP to be appointed for a fixed term with approval of Parliament to exercise independent control over the Police as well as make the police loyal to the citizenry instead of political parties.
Speaking at a forum in Accra on post-election reflections on the country’s 2016 elections, CSP Agordzo explained that the reforms should also provide grounds for which the IGP could be removed.
“This would give the IGP the status of a superior court Judge whose removal from office cannot be based on the whims and caprices of the appointing authority”, he added.
He said such constitutional arrangements should also ensure that the Minister of Interior could only give directives to IGP in writing on matters of policy, but not as to how the IGP should do his or her work.
This means IGPs could be fired on definite grounds if they were unable to perform their duties.
The Police Officer was of the view that such arrangements would embolden the IGP and the Police service to take decisive actions against politically motivated infractions without having to wait on the President to speak out.
CSP Agordzo said the 2016 elections were successful because of the collective efforts of all stakeholders who played their roles in an effective and efficient manner.
He noted that the National Election Security Task Force did not receive any kind of funding from government except the provision made for ration for personnel, which affected the training of personnel and logistics.
He explained that the Police could not prosecute electoral offenders swiftly because it could not have done that without the consent of the Attorney General under Section 42 of 1992 PNDCL 284,and urged all to work towards amending the section to allow for prosecution of offenders.
CSP Agordzo expressed worry about post-election violence of assault on political opponents and appointees, seizure of public property such as toilets, waterfalls which downgraded the country in the eyes of international community.
He said the political vigilante groups became a threat to national security after the 2016 elections, describing it as a hydra-headed social problem that required a national discussion.
CSP Agordzo said the vigilante groups acted in full belief that they had the full support of the party and called for national discussions on the effect of political vigilantes on the fortunes of the country.
Dr Franklin Oduro, Deputy Director of Centre for Democratic Development, stated the need to disband all political party –afflicted vigilante groups to ensure national peace and security.
He called for a more credible way to deal with the canker of militant party-affiliated vigilantism with proactive de-politicisation of state control of the police and other security agencies.
Dr Oduro admonished the need to strengthen the Administrator-General through effective regulation to manage the country’s asset.
This he explained would help protect the country’s asset register, its enforcement and a law regarding the disposal of state property to the benefit of the citizenry.