The National Commission on Small Arms and Light Weapons has called on the Inspector General of Police (IGP), David Asante Apeatu, to institute rigorous measures to ensure that personnel within his command do not sell or rent arms to civilians.
The Commission’s call follows the interdiction of three Policemen for allegedly selling an AK47 assault rifle to suspected armed robbers.
The three: Seargent Stanley Mensah, Corporal Emmanuel Takyi and Corporal Osei, work with the Weija command and the Rapid Deployment Force in Accra. Speaking to Citi News, a Member of the Commission and the Chairman of the International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA), Baffour Takyi Amoa, urged the IGP to ensure a speedy prosecution and mete out severe punishment to the culprits to deter others from engaging in the act.
“I think all of us should be worried because, for even one weapon like the AK-47, we all know how many people it can destroy in seconds. Therefore, if we have over 1 million arms and we don’t know where they are or who owns them, of course, it is worrying. It means that the system of controlling police stockpile is not stringent enough and the IGP should ensure that more stringent measures are taken in the control of the police stockpile.”
On the arrest of three officers for renting out weapons, Mr. Takyi Amoa said the IGP needs to “expedite action on the case as an example for all citizens to learn from.”
Reports say the robbers, who had been rented the weapons had been involved in a motor accident, and while they were being transported to a hospital by an ex-police officer, they started complaining that they had left their guns behind, fearing that the officers they rented the guns from would be in trouble.
The ex-officer became suspicious and informed the police command to look into the matter.
Two suspected officers believed to be involved in the criminal arrangement were found out and arrested for further investigations.
The robbers had confessed that the arrangement was to return the weapons to the officers after their operation over the weekend.
The Police administration remains tight-lipped about the matter.