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General News Fri, 17 Jan 2020

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Think twice if you plan on causing havoc during election 2020 - IGP warns

The Inspector-General of Police James Oppong Boanuh has warned groups and persons to scrap any plans of causing havoc during the 2020 General elections.

Ghana over the years has had to deal with vigilante groups during elections as these people often cause chaos at polling stations.

The IGP said: “As we enter an election year, let me assure Ghanaians, that we the officers and men of the Ghana Police Service, and with the collaboration with our sister security organizations, we will do everything possible to ensure that our duties are performed in a way that does not favor anybody. We will be very fair and firm in the performance of our duty”.

“Let me also repeat that any group of persons or any person intending to foment trouble before, during or after the election should think twice because we will be ready for them”.

The IGP said this at Akropong-Akuapem in the Eastern Region when he joined The Church of Pentecost to commission the Akropong District Police Headquarters and Police Station edifice constructed by the Church at the cost of Ghc516,000.

In January last year, Ghana witnessed violence during the Ayawaso by-elections, there were some shooting incidents which led to some persons believed to be NDC supporters sustaining injuries. This led to President Akufo-Addo setting up the Emile Short Commission to investigate the issue and they came out with certain recommendations.

Subsequently, the Presented assented to the Vigilantism and Related Offences Act, 2019, which bans acts of vigilantism in the country, they are likely to cause chaos again.

Per the new law, “a person who directly or indirectly instigates or solicits the activity of a vigilante, facilitates or encourages vigilantism, or conceals a vigilante to avoid lawful arrest, commits an offence, and is liable, on conviction, to a term of imprisonment of not less than ten (10) years and not more than fifteen (15) years.”

The two major parties agreed to meet and discuss ways of disbanding vigilante groups, they held several meetings but it appears the process has stalled now.

Source: Prime News Ghana

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