Deputy Minister of Tourism and Diasporan Relations, Mr. Joe Baidoe-Ansah and the District Chief Executive (DCE) for Krachi East, Hon Michael Yaw Gyato have been embroiled in controversial cases over traffic offences.
The Deputy Minister, who is the MP for the Efia Kwesimintsim Constituency in the Western Region, and his driver Anthony Yeboah, were reported to have had a confrontation with a police patrol team on the Accra - Cape Coast road last Monday for over speeding.
The incident specifically occurred at Gomoa Buduatta at about 6 p.m. and the Deputy Minister and his driver were charged at the Awutu Bereku Police Station, where the Hon. Baidoe-Ansah claimed he and his driver were assaulted.
A source at the Central Regional Police Headquarters confirmed the inci¬dent and told The Chronicle newspaper that reports reaching the headquarters indicated that there were exchange of words between the minister and the police personnel at the Awutu Bereku police barracks.
The Source said the Minister's driver had been granted a self-recognisance bail, pending further investigations into the matter.
The incident involving Mr. Gyato, occurred last week Friday and he was reported to have ordered his boys to beat up Sergeant Emmanuel Holortu, for apprehending him and his driver at Moree Police Barrier, for over speeding.
Mr. Gyato was travelling from Dambai, the Capital of his District to Twifo Praso in the Central Region, to attend the funeral of the mother of Deputy Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment, Mr. Abraham Dwuma Odoom, when the incident occurred.
The DCE, who was carting a cow to the place for slaughter for the funeral, which the President John Agyekum Kufuor was expected to attend, got infuriated when the police officer signalled him to stop at the barrier.
Police sources in Cape Coast say at 12 noon on that fateful day, personnel of the Regional Motor Transport and Traffic Unit (MTTU), who were at the barrier signalled two pick up trucks carrying bulls with registration numbers GW 6663 W and GT 9261 X to stop but the pick-up vehicles failed to do so.
Incidentally, the DCE was on board one of the pick-ups carrying the bulls to Twifu-Praso where the funeral was held recently. Sergeant Holortu, who was among the personnel on duty, got into another vehicle, chased them, arrested them and ordered that the vehicles be driven to the office of the Regional MTTU at Bakaano in Cape Coast for them to be processed for court.
The DCE was said to be sitting quietly in the vehicle, without asking the driver to comply with the instructions from the police.
The police officer, who insisted that they drove to the office of the MTTU, entered the DCE's vehicle and ordered the driver to move the car straight to the MTTU office. This infuriated the DCE, who was said to have introduced himself as a DCE, commanded his boys to show the police officer where power lay. The boys, in their respect for the orders of their master, beat up the policeman and pulled him out of the car, tearing his uniform into pieces in the process.
The policeman, according to eyewitnesses, was saved by on-lookers and passengers in other vehicles, who saw Mr. Gyato's boys pummelling Holortu.
The DCE, sensing danger, bolted as he drove his vehicle to the Regional Administration.
The Regional Co-ordinating Director, Mr. Michael Essandoh, later accompanied Mr. Gyato to the police station where he was arrested by the high ranking police officers at the Regional Police Headquarters at Pedu. He was however, granted police enquiry bail, together with his boys. Both the Deputy Minister and the DCE refused to comment on the issues when they were called on phone on Thursday.
Credit: The Chronicle