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May 19, 2009

 
 
 
 
 

Is crime rate increasing in Ghana?
Abdul Salam Sule, Ghanadot


Accra, May 19, Ghanadot - Ghana is undoubtedly a peaceful country with unquestionable democratic credentials and it is seen as a beacon of hope for many African countries.


But the recent upsurge in crime in the country has left much to be desired and it is no wonder the general public is questioning the combat readiness of the Ghana Police service in fighting crime.


In Accra for instance, some areas are noted to be spots for criminal activities where unsuspecting members of the general public are terrorised and robbed of their valuable items with impunity. The areas include the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, Odawna Station, Achimota, Tudu, Kantamanto and Ashaiman.


Snatching of mobile phones, defrauding of people under the pretext of selling precious minerals to them and sale of faulty mobile phones are some of the criminal activities perpetrated in these areas.


At the Kwame Nkrumah Circle for instance, the famous spots where phones are snatched from the victims are the bus stop opposite the Orion cinema building and the traffic light between the Kaneshie station and the new pedestrian market.

 

The bus stop opposite the Orion cinema abounds with pick pockets who take advantage of the rush by commuters to get vehicles to their homes and therefore pick their phones.


The criminals take advantage of the chaotic situation at that time, mingle with commuters and flock the vehicles as if they are going to board them but what they do is to steal phones and sometimes money.

 

The phones that are stolen from these spot are quickly sent to the area near Ghana Telecom, now Vodafone where they are sold for a pittance.


Behind the pedestrian market at the Odawna station, the criminals have created a no-go- zone where they plan their activities and take stock of daily operations.

 

Meanwhile, drivers, mates, traders and some residents in the area know these criminals very well and their activities but look unconcerned as they (the criminals) continue with their nefarious activities.

 

The traders and the residents always explained that, their inability to expose these gangsters who have become a law on their own was a result of the fear that the criminals might attack them, hence their decision to play the ostrich.


Some of these criminals have other ways of duping people rather than stealing from their pockets or bags. They approach pedestrians and pretend to be in a difficult situation such as running short of money for transport. They continue asking for the same support from as many people as possible and at the end of the day make a fortune.


Mr Kwasi Donkor, a security expert has said, the crime in the country could be traced to the act of indiscipline and looting that charcterised the various coups in the country.

 

In an interview with Ghanadot, the security expert said, the act of violence and looting that took place in the various coup-de-tats left in its wake some criminals and that is what the nation is currently reaping this load of crime.


Mr Donkor also blamed the increase in crime rate on unemployment among the youth. He said, it was not by chance that the saying that, 'the devil finds work for the idle hands' came into being and some of the people who involved themselves in criminal activities do so on the basis that there was no work to employ them.


He has therefore called on the Ghana Police Service to expedite action on combating crime in the capital city and the nation as a whole. He also advised the Attah Mills led administration to consider creating more jobs as he promised in the manifesto of his party.


Meanwhile, the Public Relations Officer of the Ghana Police Service, DSP Kwasi Ofori, has assured the general public of the readiness of the police service to combat crime in the capital city and the country in general.


In an interview, DSP Kwasi Ofori said, the Police has launched 'operation calm life' and it was a joint police and military operation to combat the upsurge of crime in the country.


"We have a lot of policemen and military personnel who are going to do the work and our main objective is to arrest and clamp down on criminals and reduce crime to the barest minimum", he assured.


He said, the police have acquired new equipments and logistics and they have develop new operational strategy to end the crime menace in the country.


DSP Kwasi Ofori has therefore assured the general public to be calm and support the police with vital information that would lead to the arrest of the criminals from their hide out.

 

Ghanadot

 

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