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28.05.2005 Crime & Punishment

Police train 100 officers on "on spot fine"

By GNA

Accra, May 28, GNA - Ignorance of the laws, particularly the laws dealing with the criminal code and road traffic management for polices officer is an unpardonable omission, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) P.K Acheampong, said on Saturday.

The IGP was addressing the opening of a two-day trainer of trainers course on the new Road Act 683 of 2004 in Accra. The Act empowers police officers to fine defaulters of traffic regulations on the spot.

He noted that the police needed to keep abreast with all contemporary legislation passed by Parliament.

He said in the rapidly changing and dynamic world, the police needed to keep abreast with new methodologies, concepts and practices in order to perform its functions efficiently.

"A citizen who lives in an environment where the law is the tool for social engineering, but is not conversant with the law or misapplies the law for his or her own desire is like a lost soul" 100 participants drawn from all the Motor Traffic and Transport Units (MTTU), Legal, Public Relations and Highway Patrol units throughout the country are participating in the first in a series of courses on the new Act.

The participant in addition to being introduced to the rudiments of the law will also be taken through topics like the use of safety gadgets, courtesy on our roads, human rights application and breaches of traffic regulation among others. They will teach and instruct others in the various branches of the Police Service.

He said the government was sponsoring the course because it attached absolute necessity to train the police adequately in road traffic management to check recalcitrant and undisciplined drivers. The IGP said the traditional ways of arresting such drivers, prosecuting them in court and imposing fines on them had failed to prevent obstinate drivers from repeatedly flouting the road traffic regulations.

He said the process was time wasting and tied up too many officers of the police and the judiciary in an unending saga.

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