Prime News Ghana

Officers found culpable of using excessive force on citizens during lockdown will be prosecuted - Prez. Akufo-Addo

By Mutala Yakubu
A Kasoa resident made to squat
A Kasoa resident made to squat

President Akufo-Addo says officers of both the military and police who will be found culpable of using excessive force on citizens to adhere to the lockdown directives will be prosecuted.

This comes after several videos and reports came up of security officials clashing with citizens who are said to have flouted the lockdown directive.

The President said even though most of the videos circulating on social media are false, the Inspector General of Police James Oppong Boanuh and the Chief of the Defence Staff Lieutenant General Obed Akwa have begun investigations into alleged brutalities.

READ ALSO: A decision to extend lockdown or not will be made this week - Prez. Akufo-Addo

"Reports I have received so far indicate that the police, military and other members of our security services have discharged their mandate with considerable professionalism.

"In the very few instances where members of our security agencies have employed the use of excessive force against the citizenry, in enforcing the restrictions on movement, the Inspector General of Police and the Chief of Defence Staff of the Armed Forces have taken steps to investigate such incidents, and, they have given me the assurance that, those found culpable, will be duly sanctioned. Thus far, the alleged wrongdoers have been withdrawn from the ongoing exercise. To enhance command and control, more senior officers have been deployed at the operational level, and each member of our security services participating in the exercise has been handed an aide-mémoire highlighting, essentially, the guidelines for the operation"

The President, however, said he was unhappy with some citizens who deliberately refuse to obey the directives.

"However, I am extremely disturbed by the actions of a few, unpatriotic persons, who are deliberately passing off and circulating old videos of alleged brutality by members of the security agencies, largely of foreign origin, and presenting them as though they were new incidents by Ghanaian security personnel, which have occurred during the course of this past week. It is sad, it is unfortunate, and it must end. We should all be in this fight together, and there is nothing to be gained with widespread fabrication and distribution of such videos, whose sole aim is to create discontent, and undermine the trust of the population in the men and women of our security services. Who gains from such conduct? Nobody in their right senses!"

Meanwhile, Ghana's COVID-19 cases stand at 214 as at 0600GMT on Sunday, April 5, 2020.

Six of the cases were confirmed in the Greater Accra Region while the remaining three were recorded in the Ashanti Region.

One of the patients who contracted the disease in the Greater Accra region, a 37-year-old woman, had no travel history, neither did she have any contact with another confirmed case.