Ahead of the highly anticipated Assin North by-election in the Central Region, a National Democratic Congress MP has accused the Inspector General of Police (IGP) of deliberately exposing minority MPs to harm by disarming police officers attached to them.
According to Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, MP for South Dayi, the IGP ordered police guards from the Parliamentary Protection Unit attached to minority MPs to return their weapons to the police command in the jurisdiction where they find themselves.
“The policemen attached to each Member of Parliament, whether you are in Assin Fosu or not, you are to surrender your weapon. This amounts to varying the conditions of service of Members of Parliament, and I think that the law does not permit him to do what he has done,” he said on June 26.
Speaking to JoyNews, he alleged that the IGP’s instruction was clearly politically motivated.
He continued that “for him [IGP] to tell them [MPs] that their weapons are withdrawn, it means I am being protected by a policeman who has a stick in hand.”
Also, he accused the IGP of being biased since MPs of the governing NPP still had police guards with weapons.
“I saw nearly the 137 majority MPs; all of them at the Breku park where they had their rally. Each of them had their security, some now have double weapons,” he claimed.
“I saw police vehicles carrying chairs to the NPP campaign centre yesterday [Sunday],” he alleged.
However, JoyNews sources at the Ghana Police Service say the recall of the arms of the MPs bodyguards is a routine step taken by the IGP for security reasons during such events.
On the allegation of bias by the MP, the police sources denied the claim, insisting that police guards for both the minority and majority MPs, have only had their AK-47 rifles taken from them, but they still have their pistols with them.
The sources however added that, for MPs who double as ministers, they still have their police guards keeping all their weapons as the directive to recall the arms does not affect ministers.