Election petition: Prepare for the worse, beef up security ahead of verdict â€“ Adib Saani to police
Foreign Policy and Security Analyst, Adib Saani has urged the various security agencies to beef up security and intelligence across the country ahead of the Supreme Courtâ€™s judgement on the 2020 presidential election petition.
In his view, although it is unlikely that violence would break out after the courtâ€™s ruling, the security agencies should â€œanticipate the worseâ€ and put precautionary measures in place to forestall mayhem.
He mentioned increased police visibility, constant patrols, and enhanced intelligence gathering as among the measures that should be executed by the police before and after the judgment to ensure total security.
â€œWe have die-hard party supporters and sympathisers who might get frustrated or disenchanted with the court and take the law into their own hands. In as much as we are concerned about improving security on the day of the verdict, we should also pay attention to other parts of the country.â€
â€œMost importantly, intelligence would have to be improved so that anybody or group that would be plotting anything bad, we would be able to pre-empt their actions and deal with it professionally. These are matters we should take seriously so that we are not shocked by anything that will come our way,â€ Mr Saani said.
Former President John Dramani Mahama went to Court on December 30, 2021, to challenge the validity of the Electoral Commissionâ€™s December 9 declaration of Nana Akufo-Addo as President of the Republic.
He contended that Nana Akufo-Addo failed to obtain the requisite number of votes to be declared the winner.
The Supreme Court has set Thursday, March 4, 2021 as the judgement day.
Mr Saani indicated that although a similar exercise in 2012 was received peacefully, matters of politics have the propensity to trigger violence, hence security must be prioritised at all levels.
He called for effective collaboration between the police and the various security agencies to enhance security and intelligence across the country.
He further called for heavy police presence and improved security within and around the Supreme Court, EC office and residents of both the president and the petitioner who may be targeted after the judgment.
Mr Saani also entreated the security agencies to focus on border security and block all loopholes to avert infiltration of foreigners who may capitalise on the situation to foment trouble.
â€œIf the police numbers are not enough, like we had it during the elections, we can bring in officers from the Customs, Prisons and some other security services to complement. We can also have the military play a side-line role so that in the unlikely event that the police is overwhelmed, we will have them step in to arrest the situation,â€ he said.
Mr Saani urged the leaders of the two main political parties â€“ the New Patriotic Party and the National Democratic Congress â€“ to be responsible in their utterances before and after the judgement and desist from comments that could incite their supporters and trigger violence.
He also urged the media to exercise maximum decorum in the discharge of their duties and promote peace and national unity before and after the judgement.