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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

NPP Recruited Criminals Into Police Service – Police Boss

Source: The Chronicle
The Tema Regional Police Commander, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Augustine Gyening, has launched a blistering attack on the New Patriot Party (NPP), saying it recruited a bunch of criminals into the Police Service when the party was in power.

According to him, the NPP, when in power, used its influence on the Police Service to recruit personnel who did not qualify to be in the service. He attributed the recent criminal activities of some personnel of the Service, to those who were recruited some five years ago when the NPP was in power, adding that those personnel were recruited without following due process in the Police Service.

The Tema Regional Police Commander was speaking on gold Power Drive recently, in reaction to some police personnel who were arrested on the Accra-Aflao road for robbing a Malian national off his money.

“When you look at the personnel we’ve arrested so far in the Service, their service numbers can be traced back to some five years ago when they were recruited, and that was when the NPP was in power,” he noted. But, the Minority Leader, Osei-Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, in a sharp rebuttal, described ACP Gyening’s comments as unfortunate, since he (ACP Gyening) cannot use one’s criminal record in the service to judge all who were recruited some five years ago.

“If a policeman who was recruited during the NPP regime has been arrested for a criminal offense, it doesn’t mean that all the personnel recruited some five years ago, when the party was in power, are all criminals,” he noted. According to him, it was not the first time a criminal had been arrested in the Police Service, and therefore wondered what informed ACP Gyening’s decision to make “such an unfortunate comment.’

“Is it the first time that a person in the Service has been found to have engaged in something contrary to the law? If it is the first time, then, would ACP Gyening agree, or say that during Rawlings’ administration, all those who went contrary to the law are criminals?” the Minority Leader quizzed.

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Okere, Mr Dan Kwaku Botwe, was also heard on one of the local FM stations in Tema lambasting ACP Gyening, describing his comments as irresponsible, since he was part of the Police Service during the NPP administration when recruitment exercises were carried out.

“What did he say at that time when the recruitment exercise was carried out?” he asked. ACP Gyening however, insisted that whenever he hears stories on air about criminals in the Police Service, he felt uncomfortable, noting that the only way to get rid of the malfeasance was to revert the current recruitment exercise to that of the olden days, where finger prints were taken to determine whether one had a criminal record or not, before accepting him or her into the Service.

“The current administration should revert to the olden style of recruitment. In fact, they should do something to bring sanity into the Service,” he stated, and also called on the current administration of the Police Service to screen those already in the Service, in order to get rid of the criminals.

Though he admitted his suggestion might be a very difficult task, he noted that would be the only way to get rid of the bad nuts in the service. The Commander of the Striking Force, Chief Supt. Ben Mensah, in a telephone interview on the program, also blamed the NPP for current happenings in the Police Service.

He also shared the belief that if the Service was to do away with the criminals, then it should consider reverting its recruitment exercise to that of the olden days.

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