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25.04.2007 General News

Ministers condemn mob justice

By myjoyonline

The Deputy Ministers for Interior and Justice have condemned the recent upsurge in mob justice in the country.

Ghanaians have expressed concern about the increasing rate of instant justice across the country. The latest of such cases is the lynching of the administrator of the Goaso Government Hospital, Mr Anthony Yeboah Boateng in Atronie of the Brong Ahafo region. He was suspected to be a ritual killer.

Speaking to Joy News, the Deputy Minister of Interior, Mr Kwaku Agyemang Manu attributed the increase in the action to indiscipline in the society.

“Instead of people getting close to the security agencies, instead of them calling security agencies on phone to their rescue they take the law into their own hands. So it goes beyond just efficient security. It is a problem just in our society. It is a case of massive indiscipline in our society,” he said.

He noted that most incidents of mob justice often occur at places where security personnel are not readily available. Although some people have attributed the increase in mob justice to the ineffectiveness of the police, Mr Manu said that should not be used as an excuse.

“Just like any human institution, the police at times as individuals may be forced to use their discretion. So if one or two misbehaves somewhere that would justify public condemnation. For me that does not give general indication that the entire police force is not working,” he said.

He stated that the public should also have in mind that the Service is constrained when it comes to logistics to deliver efficiently.

“We expect the best from our police but over years incentives that should go into efficient policing have not been there; they don't have men adequately and logistics when it comes to communication,” he said.

On his part, the Deputy Attorney General and Justice Minister, Mr Kwame Osei Prempeh said his outfit has not publicly condemned the action because it might be pre-judicial to the trial of suspects who might be tried in connection with such cases.

He however warned that individuals should not take the law into their own hands by lynching suspected thieves or criminals. While admitting though that the country's judicial system is slow, he said that should not serve as a platform for people or individuals to beat suspected criminals.

“The legal process does not move as fast as society wants it to move…we should as a nation learn that once we have decided to adopt the rule of law due process must be followed at all times,” he said.