The Interior Minister Mr Ambrose Dery has revealed that government has only five thousand bulletproof vests for over 40,000 police officers.
Explaining the steps taken by the government to resource the Police to fight crimes in this country while commenting on the killing of a police officer in a robbery attack on a bullion van in Jamestwon, Mr Dery told TV3’s Dzifa Bampoh in an exclusive interview that “:…What we call bullion vehicles in Ghana are just ordinary vehicles with plates on them which are not armoured.
“They don’t give the police and the cash any protection and so it is easy for bullets to go through them so they are not bullion vans,” he said.
“We have taken steps to protect our police men and women when they go on such operations. We provided a number of bulletproof vests and helmets.
The first consignment that came in, about 5000 of them came in just before we experienced the deaths of a number of policemen in these past few years . The police officers were encouraged because we then issued those vests for them and also made provision for them to carry side weapons to protect themselves.
“5000 is not adequate, we are dealing with over 40,000 police officers and for those who have interest such as banks and financial institutions , we do not think that the limited resources that we have for the protection of the general public should be allocated to that special needs. So we expect that in those cases they should make a contribution to protecting the Police that we allocate to them.
“The banks don’t get held responsible when we lose policemen , the government does, I do. And I don’t think that the Bank of Ghana fixing 2023 is acceptable, it is not. So is it a deaths sentence for those Police we are going to assign?”
He further appealed to the man whose CCTV cameras captured the robbery attacks on a bullion van leading to the killing of a police officer and another person to release the video to the Police to assist in arresting the criminals.
Mr Dery told Dzifa that the Police had informed him about the unwillingness of the man to release the CCTV video to help arrest the robbers.
“I want to emphasize that I told the Police each death is equally important. It mustn’t be a police, it mustn’t be a prominent politician, each death is equally important.
“This matter should be dealt with quickly as possible. It happened in the day time but they raise an issue that I think I want to use this forum to appeal. They say there is person who owns a CCTV in the vicinity.
“The Police are asking that they be given the recording of the CCTV but there was resistance from the owner. I want to use this medium to appeal to him to cooperate and to appeal to all those person who were in the vicinity to assist the Police on whatever description or whatever information that they have to enable us track them.”