The Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Sulemana Braimah, has said the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr George Akuffo Dampare reacted to some form of interference by the British High Commissioner, Harriet Thompson, in an issue of law enforcement.
In a tweet, he said “IGP reacted to an act of some level of interference by a senior diplomat in an issue of law enforcement. Suddenly, the matter turns politics. NDC folks condemning the IGP with some even citing Aid. Must we be destroying our institutions because of the quest for political power?”
The Police Administration issued a strongly-worded response to what they described as uninformed, biased comment made by the British High Commissioner to Ghana on the arrest of Convener of FixTheCounctry Movement, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, on 17th May, 2022.
In a tweet on Tuesday May 17, Harriet Thompson said regarding the arrest that, “Oliver Barker Vormawor, convener of #FixTheCountry movement, arrested again, I understand for a motoring offence on his way to court. I’ll be interested to see where this goes…”.
But in a statement issued by the Inspector General of Police, Dr George Akuffo Dampare on Tuesday May 31, the Police said “we consider you tweet violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961 which enjoins diplomatic missions not to interfere in the internal affairs of their host countries.
“Your Excellency, the fact that you use the ‘arrested again’ we believe must mean you were making reference to previous occasions Mr Barker Vormwaor was arrested for threatening the security of the state and recently for motor traffic offences.”
Barker-Vormawor was arrested and charged for “careless and inconsiderate driving” at a Madina District Court.
He was arrested Tuesday May 17 by officers of the Motor Transport and Traffic Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service.
He announced the charge himself on his personal Facebook page.
This matter has divided public opinion with some analysts indicating that the IGP was right in issuing the letter whereas others think otherwise.
But some members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) criticised the IGP for issuing such a letter to the High Commissioner.
For instance, North Tongu Member of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa described the IGP’s statement as highhanded, a statement that is full of raw and undiplomatic expressions.
Speaking in interview with TV3’s Komla Adom on the mid day news, Tuesday May 31, Mr Ablakwa who is the Minority Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, said “To be very sincere it is my view that this matter could have been handled much better. The IGP could have raised his concerns with the Minister respodnble for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration.
“Those are the normal diplomatic channels , the Foreign Missions could have conveyed whatever concerns the Ghanaian has with the High Commissioner. If you look at the statement which has now been made public, it is very highhanded , very strong words, the use of very raw, undiplomatic language. It is as though the IGP is not speaking to a friendly country. “
By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana