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01.02.2005 General News

Police worried about upsurge of armed robbery

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Accra, Feb. 1, GNA - The Inspector General of Police, Nana Owusu-Nsiah on Tuesday said the Police Administration would put in pragmatic strategies to curb the recent upsurge of armed robbery in the country.

He said the incidence of robbery and other social vices the country was witnessing might erode the spectacular performance of the security personnel in the past year if firm plans were not implemented to control the situation.

He said last year, the administration put in place effective strategies to curb robbery to the barest minimum but "it is surprising that this menace is once again rearing its ugly head just at the beginning of the year".

The IGP, who was addressing the Emergency Regional Commanders' Conference for 2005, urged all Commanders to take steps to nip robbery in the bud to restore peace among the citizenry.

All Regional Commanders, Commissioners of Police and Heads of all units within the Police Administration attended the conference to review strategies in arresting the upsurge of armed robbery both in the cities and on the highways.

Nana Owusu-Nsiah said another source of worry to the Police was the acts of indiscipline of varied proportion plaguing the Service.

He said there was a large number of complaints in the form of petitions and legal suits against Service personnel, some of which could have been solved amicably if the personnel involved were disciplined and tactful in their approach to duty.

"Indiscipline, no matter the form it takes is an indictment, a hindrance and a black spot which tarnishes the image of the Service. It is not too late, discipline must be restored at all cost."

He attributed this to the lack of supervision on the part of Commanders saying: " Commanders will be failing in their duties if personnel under their Command are constantly engaged in acts of indiscipline".

Nana Owusu-Nsiah said these lapses accounted for the recent misuse of firearms by some personnel and challenged the Commanders to ensure that personnel under their command adhered to the regulations guiding the use of firearms.

"We have been given the weapon to protect lives and property. We should, therefore, not employ them for other purposes especially as tools for punishing suspects at the least opportunity."

On the welfare of the personnel, he said corresponding financial allocation from this year's budget would be used to provide more decent accommodation to cater for the huge intake of personnel.

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