Report: Timbilla's Police recruitment scam unresolved two years on

Report: Timbilla's Police recruitment scam unresolved two years on
Source: Ghana | | NSA
Date: 21-12-2016 Time: 01:12:36:pm

It all started on the 6th of March 2014 after the Independence Parade, when it was announced by the Police administration that COP Patrick Timbilla had been put under house arrest for allegedly taking part in a police recruitment scam.

Over hundreds of victims had paid money in anticipation of entering into the Police Service only to be told that they had been defrauded.

Director General in charge of Police Public Affairs, DCOP David Ampah Benin was in the studio of JOY FM on 6th March 2014 to break the news about the scam and the supposed involvement of COP Timbilla.

“A special task force put in place by the police administration presented an interim report which implicated the commissioner. Interdiction was recommended by the special task force.

“We have taken this action to enable the task force and the investigative team to have full access to the commissioner for investigations to continue,” he continued.

The house arrest meant that COP Timbilla could not leave his house or appear in public.

The special task force during its investigations is reported to have seen text messages and other correspondence between him and the victims.

 Mr. Timbilla denied any wrongdoing with the scam which resulted in about 100 being defrauded with more than Ȼ1 million was taken from these victims.

Three days after the announcement, then interior minister Mark Woyongo who was part of the Police Council said Mr. Timbilla was on interdiction not under house arrest.

Ironically, COP Timbila had addressed the press days before his interdiction, warning that the Service was going to deal with recruits who had fake documents.

He said “We are going to arrest them for the possession of forged documents and the onus will lie on them to prove their source of that document.”

About 12 others, including two Police officers were also put behind bars on the matter. It did not end there.

The Interior Ministry together with the Ghana Police Service launched investigations into the matter and mounted an intensive search for the culprits.

After this, Rose Bio Atinga then Director General of administration at the Police Service told Beatrice Adu in another exclusive interview that the case had been handed over to an inquiry for further investigations and that, the Police would also not be pressurized to finish the report.

Since then, nothing has been heard again.

Sharing her thoughts about the development, Regional Coordinator at the Africa office of  the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, Nina Mensah said it is taking unnecessarily too long to resolve the issue.

She indicated that the police does not need any advice from the Attorney General before it makes public progress its made on the issue, as the Service claims is required of them.

The slow pace with which the issue is being handled, she believes is just typical of the police service.

“I don’t know what kind of advice they are expecting from the AG’s office, but I guess they could at least give us a summary of the report.

“They do not need the advice of the AG to come and tell us what they found. I think it is taking too long, but I am not surprised though, it is the attitude of the police service,” she added.

Nina Mensah also said if the police is left to tackle the issue by themselves, “I will be surprised if we see any closure anytime soon.”

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