International Women's Day: The Ghanaian Police woman, a woman with challenges
By: Ahanta Apemenyimheneba Kwofie III
Today is international Women's day and it is very needful to highlights the role of women in our society and give them the space to also soar to higher heights like their male counterparts. We must show them support in their field of endeavours, after all our mothers and sisters are women.
There world has evolved from the prehistoric times through the stone and iron ages and navigated through medieval times further down to us in this twenty first century. Through all these times, the creature woman has shown resilient and strong character accompanied by exhibitions of potentials and talents to cement her role in the development of society despite oppression and suppression from their male counterparts at times. No one knows when and how male dominance of over women started in the history of mankind but beyond this are some male characters have proven to be chauvinists and misogyinists simply because the female character appears weaker in flaunting of muncles but certainly not in intelligence and wisdom.
We here in Ghana have joined the international community to celebrate our women but we often miss out on one particular group of women and this time we must not forget them today and that is our women in the security services -the police, the soldier, the prisons and all the women found in our security settings contributing their quotas in diverse ways for the peace and stability of this country. It is their complement to the efforts of their male counterparts that have preserve the peace and stability of this country. Since I am a police man, I will limit myself to our police women but I hope and pray that someday there will be a big platform to highlights the contributions and achievements of our women in the security services in particular and the country at large.
Women in Ghana police is quite recent since the first 12 woman batch of the police women were enlisted in 1952 to check child delinquency. Since then, the Ghanaian police woman has transformed from single task to multiple task of commands and operatons with dynamism. Even though they seem to competite for space with their male counterparts, some police women have been able to distinguish themselves with high sense of professionalism coupled with dedications and commitments to the service of God and country.
There is a police woman next to my door. Her name is Kate. Every morning I see how she struggles to put her children in shape to go to school coupled with her duties as a wife and woman in addition to her statutory duties as a police woman. She will also have to struggle to perform her chores particularly when she runs long shifts since she also have a husband to care of. It's very interesting to see her at times carrying one baby at the back and holding the hand of another to school before she goes to work. It's not easy I guess.
Many police women have had their marriages collapsed because they lacked adequate time to keep husbands since the police woman is always on duty particularly in places that there are chronic shortage of personnel. They will spend all their times at the police stations at the expense of their families. The police woman has always had it very challenging raising children and keeping a husband. It's a full time business to be a police woman with challenging tasks to keep work and family. The married police woman is always torn between the two.
To be an unmarried police woman too comes with it own challenges since there is no definite time for unmarried police woman to work and the fact that policing is full of exigencies. You will have to at times tolerate name calling from your male counterparts and deal with stereotypeism that every single or unmarried police woman "sleeps around" or "warms beds" of their supperior officers. You will have to bear the fact that your male counterparts at times drive away your potential suitors for reasons known to them particularly if you have turned down their proposals before.
Even in the police, we at times relegate women to the background but I have had the opportunity to go on some deadly police operations with women who stood on their feet to save the situation when we the men almost gave up. The first time I saw a woman driving a police car, I watched in dismay till I felt in a gutter due to how she turned the vehicle around and sped off. I have also seen a continugent of female police dispatch riders and it's a sight to behold how they displayed during independence day celebrations and very recently during the presidential inauguration and the 60thanniversary celebrations, our ASP Mary led the mounted squadron that escorted the president.
Our police women stand for both psychological and physical motivation in our security settings. The elderly ones are packs of wisdom coupled with experiences of all the good and the bad and well placed to offer godly and motherly counsels.
In the police administration, we have had police women who stood shoulder to shoulder with their counterparts male police officers. We have had Madam Mills Robertson as the first woman police to have commanded the whole police service in her capacity as acting IGP. You can talk of COP/Mrs. Rose Bio Atinga as the first police woman to command Accra Region, Mrs. Vibe-Zanzri who until the recent reshuffle was director general human resource, ACP Tiwa deputy director general CID and lot of police women that have held key schedules in the police administration and sensitive command positions. There are several women currently holding the position of District and Unit commanders and should be commended.
Going forward into the future, we must identify the role of women in maintaining law and order and give credence to their contributions for the peace and stability of this country.
The Ghanaian police woman must be appreciated by all levels of society and be respected by the police fraternity and non-police-community.
The police woman is the only woman who watches over her children and that of others.
Truly, it is the finest among them are police and nurses. Nurses because my wife is a nurse.
On this international Women's day, I salute all Ghanaian women police and other women in our security services. We owe them a million thanks as country and people.