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The Member of Parliament for the Wa West constituency, Mr Peter Lanchene Toobu, has expressed worry about several issues that, in his expert opinion as a retired police officer, have the propensity to threaten Ghana’s national security if not properly addressed.
In this regard, the lawmaker, in an out-of-chamber statement addressed to Speaker of Parliament Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin highlighted issues of armed robbery, illegal mining, road crashes and the recent money ritual saga as examples.
“Respectfully, Rt. Hon. Speaker, let me draw your attention to armed robbery cases from Wa West across the valleys in Sissala East to Bawku West, not forgetting about the millions of frustrated unemployed youth due to our failure to transform ‘galamsey’ into a decent community mining programme”, the opposition MP wrote.
Describing the current anti-galamsey security initiative, which is aimed at clamping down on illegal miners and their activities, as a failure, Mr Toobu noted: “The wrong analysis and appreciation of the ‘galamsey menace’ led to it being defined, mainly, as a security challenge resulting in the establishment of Operation Vanguard. The failure of the operation is glaring to every Ghanaian despite the huge sums of money sunk into it”.
“The Operation Vanguard strategy has failed and we need to rethink quickly as a country to protect our natural resources and channel the energies of the teeming youth into productive ventures”.
“This can contribute to our effort to move the economy from taxation to production,” Mr Toobu said, adding: “It’s my hope that the national dialogue on small-scale mining scheduled for April 2021 will produce a national policy on the subject”.
The statement continued: “Rt. Hon. Speaker, impunity by land guards, shooting of officers in uniform, broad daylight robbery coupled with the youth engaging in ritual murder in line with many money rituals advertised daily on some television stations with tacit approval by our silence as a nation, are becoming the new signature of Awutu Senya East constituency”.
He also raised concerns about the spate of road accidents this year.
According to him, some 517 people perished within the first two months of 2021.
He, therefore, called for national attention to promote road safety.
“The worth of human life seems to be dropping to its lowest ebb in our dear nation. This emerging un-Ghanaian vice, if not nibbed in the bud, has the potential to result into a security challenge with cascading impact,” he further stated.
The lawmaker, therefore, made some recommendations to be considered.
He called Formed Police Units in Awutu Senya East Municipality, Wa West, Sissala West and Bawku West District.
He also recommended the use of smart-policing to conduct a research into why Kasoa has become a hub of violent crimes and also implement a Smart Traffic Project to reduce road crashes.
The retired police officer also recommended that police visibility is revamped to ensure citizens are safe in the Ghana.
Mr Toobu, therefore, called on the Speaker “to draw the attention of the Chairman of the National Security Council, Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to provide leadership to arrest this social decay”.
In his view, “all these security cracks make the country vulnerable to acts such as terrorism and the culturally distasteful LGBTQI+”.