A US State Department report has fingered public institutions and the Ghana Police Service for widespread corruption and human rights abuses by the Ghana police, but Acting Police Public Affairs Director, DSP Cephas Arthur, has some misgivings.

The report encapsulates activities within the public and civil service as well as the Police administration in 2010.

According to the report, Human rights problems include use of excessive force by the police, which resulted in deaths and injuries and ethnic killings.

The report also catalogues vigilante violence, harsh and life-threatening prison conditions; police impunity; prolonged pre-trial detention; arbitrary arrest of journalists; corruption in all branches of government and violence against women and children.

It further reveals there is discrimination against persons with disabilities, gays, lesbians and persons with HIV/AIDS and raises issue with ethnic discrimination and politically motivated violence as well as child labour.

The report concedes that there were no indications that the government committed politically motivated killings; however, use of excessive force by security forces resulted in the deaths of several armed criminal suspects and other persons in 2010.

It stressed that corruption is present in all branches of government, blaming the government for ineffectively implementing laws meant to limit corruption.

On the police service, the report says personnel set up barriers to extort money from motorists, and judicial officials accept bribes to expedite or postpone cases or to “lose” records.

It wondered why the government has failed to prosecute those found to have misapplied state funds during public sittings of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament.

When reached for comments, Information Minister John Tia told Joy News government is still studying the full report.

But on aspects affecting the Ghana Police service, Acting Public Affairs Director, DSP Cephas Arthur had some misgivings.

He told Joy News only a few miscreants within the service are culpable for extortions, adding his outfit has launched an image cleansing campaign to weed out small percentage.

He said some officers were recently arrested for allegedly extorting monies from road users and were being investigated.

John Tia however described the aspects of the report which hinged on attacks on peaceful demonstrators by the police administration as unfortunate.

Source: Joy News/Myjoyonline.com/Ghana


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