The rising statistics about prank calls to the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) is staggering and demands a national response.
We have gathered that last year alone registered 637,660 nuisance calls as against 35,307 in 2021, a palpable increase in statistics. With a monthly registration of 50,000 and a daily statistics of 1,714 of such calls, a gloomy picture stares at us.
With the situation nowhere near abating to the extent that the GNFS has expressed concern, all stakeholders, that is the Ghanaian population and others living within this jurisdiction, must join hands in whatever fashion to ameliorate this irresponsible behaviour by both adults and adolescents.
Even more worrying is the fact the trend increases in frequency when school children are on vacation.
The recent action decided upon, partnership between the National Security apparatus and the GNFS, is a step in the right direction. The potential of this approach to deal a fatal blow to the phenomenon is not in doubt and we are all for it.
Indeed that should have taken place long before now, but as the dictum goes “better late than never”, we can only support the action and proceed.
In a digitised world such as we have been ushered into by Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia, many previously impossible feats are now possible. Tracking sources of such prank calls could not have been easier.
It is gladdening to learn that under the partnership, gadgets are being sourced, which by the end of the year would enable the origins of prank calls to be traced for prosecutorial action. Deterrence is what is largely needed under the circumstances. When prank callers start being traced and arrested, prosecuted and jailed after due process or fined hefty amounts of money, the appropriate deterrence would have been sent out throughout the country.
The fallouts from over-pranked calls on personnel of the GNFS can take the form of ignoring calls genuine or otherwise, the implications of which can only be imagined. One of such fallouts could be not attending to distress calls by firefighters even as these are genuine ones.
Thankfully, professional as they are, ignoring calls whatever their quality is not part of the equation. Waste of resources and the like are attendant results of prank calls.
The solution being the acquisition of the appropriate state-of-the-art gadgets to deal with the staggering and hiking statistics of prank calls should be executed sincerely and with dispatch.
We are at our wits end why knowing the implications of such prank calls some good-for-nothing persons would persist on that irresponsible tangent.
Parents should warn their kids and wards against making prank calls while they are away at work, especially since the details indicate that the statistics are higher when school children are on vacation.