The Volta Regional Police Command says it is adopting and implementing strategic initiatives at operational and tactical levels of law enforcement for enhanced security in the Volta Region.
In recent times, the region has recorded a number of crimes that have become a source of worry, although the region is known to be one of the most peaceful in the country.
Allaying the fears of the people, the Regional Police Commander, DCOP Edward Oduro-Kwarteng, said a lot of measures had been put in place to reduce crimes and maintain the peace in the region.
As part of the measures, DCOP Oduro-Kwarteng said intensive patrolling, intelligence-led operations, and targeted swoops had started.
He said the command was also cultivating a reliable informant system, arresting and prosecuting criminals, and getting convictions for social deviants through the criminal justice system.
“Let me announce that in this year alone, the command has successfully arrested, prosecuted, and convicted an appreciable number of criminals. In violent crimes specifically robberies, four robbers have been imprisoned to a sum of 82 years.
“For sexually related offenses, particularly defilement, 14 accused persons were sentenced to a total of 140 years imprisonment with hard labor; and in anti-human trafficking cases, five convicts were sentenced to a total of 24 years and five others fined a total of GH¢25,540 for the same crime,” he announced.
DCOP Oduro-Kwarteng said this last Tuesday during a maiden meet-the-press briefing on the general crime situation, as part of the police’s accountability to members of the public and to solicit their maximum cooperation in crime-fighting in the region.
He stated that the vision of the command was to become a world-class police service, capable of delivering a planned, protective and democratic service of international best practices.
He further indicated that the police were not only interested in arresting and convicting wrongdoers but would also adopt proactive measures to avert the occurrence of crimes in the region.
“The police is stopping at nothing but to see the cases in court dispensed judiciously. Our goal is to thrive to achieve a crime-free society and we can achieve that with public cooperation,” he added.
He noted that the officers were undergoing a series of high-risk law enforcement training at the Police Counter Terrorism Enactment and Concentration Camp (PCTECC) in the Eastern Region, adding that, the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) in the region had received training in crime scene investigation, anti-human trafficking, and cyber-related crimes.
He said positive results on crime cases had been achieved, such as the arrest of Frank Fenuku Junior, who had opened a fraudulent social media account to defraud unsuspecting victims into being enlisted into the Ghana Police Service, at a recent raid on some cyber fraudsters, and he had been sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment.
Qualitative crime analysis
The Deputy Regional Crime Officer, Superintendent Nelson Asamani, said there had been murder from infidelity and spousal misunderstanding, land litigation and attendant threats, robbery, and ritual purposes.
He noted that these murders were a result of victims failing to report and rather trivializing cases of threats, charlatanic contents in the media such as people craving for money, and lingering land disputes, which happened as a result of stabbing, gunshot, strangulation, suffocation, and decapitation recorded in areas such as Sogakope, Dzodze, Ho, Kpetoe, Aveyime, Denu, and Agbozume.
He, however, said arrests had been made, adding that cases were being handled by the CID in Accra.
He bemoaned the human trafficking situation in the region, which he said was being tackled, calling on the people to look out for one another, to end that menace because victims were usually lured for employment, fishing expedition, sexual exploitation, to work on farmlands and some other hazardous practices, from Ehi, Battor, Adidome to Nigeria, Ada, Sege, Kpando-Torkor, Dambai, and Abotoase.
He lamented that the interference of traditional authorities, parents, religious leaders, and parties settling cases on the blind side of the police was a hindrance to the work of the police service. He said those interferences prevented victims from cooperating with the prosecution.
The Volta Regional Crime Officer, Felix Anyidoho, formerly of the anti-armed robbery unit of the National CID, lamented the interference of politicians, traditional authorities, and religious leaders in crime cases.
He said “complainants who report crime issues become hostile and decline to give information. We will do our best to make sure to protect them as it is our mandate that every case be investigated.
“When someone threatens you, you must report to the nearest police station. We can assure you that there is no informant that is disclosed.”
On-road traffic regulations enforcement, the Regional Motor Traffic Transport Department (MTTD) Head, COP Dela Porte, said as at the third quarter of 2021, 97 persons including 83 pedestrians had died from road accidents, and 384 persons were injured, involving 681 vehicles and 261 motorcycles.
He mentioned areas such as Ho-Aflao, Akoete road, Ho-Accra, Anyinarase, Kponvi Barrier; Aflao-Accra, Akatsi, Tefle motorway, as accident-prone areas in the region. He said the cause of most road accidents were dangerous road slopes, poor or no direct lighting on roads, multiple potholes, and poor drainage on roads, which needed to be fixed to salvage the situation.
The police command, he said, had arraigned 50 drivers for the offenses of using expired documents and driving licenses, speeding and worn out tyres, lack of fire extinguishers, overloading of passengers, and having no crash helmet.
He also said the Volta Regional MTTD had withdrawn driving licenses from some motorists, with some cases on trial.
The Regional Public Relations Officer, DSP Efia Tenge, said the police command would not relent in its efforts but beef up security, which thrived on a good relationship between itself and the public.
“The media is a key stakeholder and conduit for information to get to the public; information and awareness are key components of crime prevention. The more the public knows about where a crime is, the more likely they are committed to where and how to report suspicious behaviors, and how to make themselves less vulnerable to these criminals,” she said.
DSP Effia Tenge commended the people of Afiadenyigba for rallying behind the police to investigate a robbery attack in the area which led to the arrest of six persons.