The Ghana Police Service says it is with immediate effect withdrawing all security detail assigned to presidential aspirants disqualified by the Electoral Commission.
According to Director of Operations Ghana Police Service, Chief Superintendent Dr Benjamin Agordzo, the police would have no legal basis to keep providing them with police protection after their disqualification.
At least five aspirants were given security detail, the police administration announced in July this year. They included the Nana Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party, Akua Donkor of Ghana Freedom Party, the Independent People’s Party’s Kofi Akpaloo, and Hassan Ayariga of the All People’s Congress.
“These men (police) have been given a special kind of training. They were taken through rigorous physical training and also in VIP protection. Every political party will be assigned 6 policemen. The arrangement we made with them is that 2 for the running mates and 4 for the presidential candidate,” Chief Supt. Agordzo said.
But the EC announced on Monday that 12 presidential aspirants including some of the people enjoying police protection have been disqualified from standing for president in the December polls.
Chief Supt. Agordzo told to 3FM’s Sara Parku on Wednesday that the essence of the arrangement is to protect the aspirants during the electioneering period.
But if they have been disqualified their security details should be withdrawn, he stated.
“If the person has been shown a red card, what basis do we have to say that he should still remain in the game?” he maintained.
However, the security detail, he said, would be restored once the EC rescind its decision and clear them to contest the presidential election, stressing “for us whatever we do is based upon the EC’s decision”.
Nonetheless, Chief Supt. Agordzo warned political parties against hiring the services of vigilante groups, whose activities he said have been outlawed.
‘‘We don’t have any problem with them using private registered security personnel. So we are not expecting them to engage political vigilante groups as it is a crime punishable by law. Per the agreement we had with them, they don’t have any reason to’’.
By Isaac Essel |3news.com |Ghana