Founding member of the ruling New Patriotic Party and ex-military officer, Dr. Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe has described the current challenges with the Ghana Police Service regarding crowd control as the result of running a militia alongside the regular police.
He cited what happened at Ayawaso West Wuogon as a clear case of militia doing the job of the police.
“Those you saw in the so called fancy dressed, were they regular police officers?” he quizzed
The former Ghana’s Ambassador to Serbia and Montenegro was speaking with Alfred Ocansey on 3FM Sunrise Morning Show on his observation of the two day Arise Ghana demonstration which was organized by Arise Ghana Movement in collaboration with some political parties from Tuesday 28th to Wednesday 29th June, 2022.
There was a violent clash between the protesters and the police during the first day of the demonstration.
Mr. Nyaho-Tamakloe says he is not surprised about the recent incidents of police abusing civilians and mishandling protesters as well as the use of brute force against civilians.
“I am surprised some of you are surprised about what is happening now. They are political elements not professional people. When you have a militia and regular police service, the militia definitely overtakes the roles of the regular police and that is what we are seeing now” Nyaho-Tamakloe expressed.
He recalled that demonstrations have been conducted in Ghana since the days of Nkrumah and there have been a series of serious protests across subsequent political regimes as recent as the 'ku me preko' demo during the time of Jerry Rawlings.
Dr Nyaho-Tamakloe said the Police, then, were more cooperative and protected protesters successfully.
“A significant event was a rally we had in Kumasi, same as 'kume preko' but I think we called it 'sie me preko'. When we got there, we saw the military lined up when we were marching to Kumasi and our people were charged, and the soldiers had their heads down with their rifles just pointing to the ground. I was shocked and we passed peacefully,” he said.
He explained that even when the leadership of the 'sie me preko' demo had left the grounds for refreshment elsewhere, the Ashanti Regional Police Commander at the time came to them in a civil and diplomatic manner to plead with them to go back to the grounds and dismiss the protesters since the protesters insisted they wouldn't disperse until the leaders of the demonstration ask them to do so.
According to Dr. Nyaho-Tamakloe, modern policing is not about the show of force and what the police did on the first day of the demonstration was fruitless and a disgrace to the people of Ghana. He again recommends that communication is a very powerful way of solving problems and opined that the second day of the Arise Ghana Demonstration was peaceful because of effective communication between the police and leaders of the protest.