It has emerged that the Ghana Police Service does not conduct character checks of persons who are recruited into the Service as police officers.
According to a trainer at the Ghana Police Training Academy, DCOP Douglas Akrofi Asiedu, the Police administration does not know how to check the temperament of those to be recruited into the Service to establish their fitness character-wise.
“The police; they do not check temperaments,” he said on Sunrise morning show on 3FM Monday when asked whether the Police conducts character checks of those recruited as police officers in the wake of a number of police brutality on civilians.
In the circumstance, he said, the Police administration only acts if an officer “exhibits a temperament which is incompatible with the rules,” adding “otherwise how do you check temperaments?”
He explained that the “construction of the human mind is not written in history, sometimes you may not know, except something happens before you get to know, like what has happened,” he said in reference to last week’s assault of a civilian by an AK47 wielding policeman at Midland Savings and Loans.
Lance Corporal Godzi Frederick Amanor was subsequently arrested on the orders of the Inspector General of Police, David Asante-Apeatu, for investigations and prosecution. He has meanwhile been interdicted pending disciplinary action against him.
Management of Midland Savings and Loans has since the incident apologised and promised to compensate the victim while some staff who were on duty and watched on as the officer assaulted the woman have been suspended.
Attack ‘uncalled for’
DCOP Akrofi Asiedu condemned the attack on the middle-aged woman who was carrying a two-month-old baby, adding that the policeman, Frederick Amanor Skalla, acted in bad faith.
“It was uncalled for, this is how public access the police; it means the police is not working well and this is not the type of training given to a police man. It could be that he is frustrated or something is worrying him,” DCOP Asiedu asserted.
The latest assault on the woman, Patience Sarfo, has brought to the kind of training given to those recruited as police officers
Addressing the issue of training, DCOP Akrofi Asiedu who is also a former Greater Accra Regional Police Commander noted that recruits are taken through the exact training course given other officers in the world.
He said Ghana adopted the British system of training but noted the Ghana Police Service is confronted some challenges which differentiates policing in Ghana from what is done the world over.
“It is the normal training given to every police man all over the world. Elsewhere, they have so many gadgets…that helps them, and we do not have that. What the British Police man will get, we don’t have; their salary, accommodation system, infrastructure, we do not have that,” he observed
“Our salary is not very encouraging. They have so many things to make them comfortable more than our policemen; we have poor conditions of service. The police are seriously understaffed and that is where the problem is,” DCOP Asiedu added.
According to DCOP Akrofi Asiedu, failure of the Police administration to ensure that police officers are taken through monthly training sessions is a factor that hinders the delivery of quality policing in the country, which he said, leads to some of the cases of brutality in the Service.
“I also think that after the passing out, it is the responsibility of the District Commanders to train them more. I blame the officers; it is the officer’s responsibility to train them on the job. That should be from the Regional Headquarters,” he stated.
He charged the Police administration to strictly ensure that District Commanders organise training sessions periodically.
“We need officers who will train the men on the job. These trainings are lacking and that is where the problem is. Now it is difficult for the officers to do because they are probably over-stressed,” he stated