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Samson’s Take: Arrogance of Power, Shameful Policing

Samson Lardi Anyenini

Minister Simon Osei-Mensah’s arrogant, ignorant rants and empty threats of legal action against ECG staff in Kumasi and some media houses is shameful.

Dear Police in Kumasi, stop taking instructions that blight your competence or rather expose your incompetence and unprofessional conduct. You do not owe any high-rank public officer blind loyalty. In fact, you are not worthy of the respectable uniform if you cannot keep up with the basic norm that you do not obey unlawful instruction even if it is coming from the Commander-In-Chief, the President. We are all under law - equal. You see how ECG staff are calling the Ashanti Regional Minister's bluff and winning the hearts of right-thinking citizens? Try emulating that. The President must be deprecating Simon Osei-Mensah's despicable conduct publicly, and reprimanding him, if he does not find it to be conduct that warrants his dismissal.

We are in dumsor and we know it is largely a money problem. What is the crime of staff of the ECG switching off power to a University that owes it GHȼ600,000? You are sending a bad signal. Why should those owing the utility, and perhaps contributing to our suffering, deserve to enjoy power supply? This is the height of the display of arrogance of power that people are talking about but you cannot seem to hear it.

Read also: Ashanti Regional Minister defends arrest of ECG boss, rejects calls for apology

Stop the incoherent and lame references to the Securities and Intelligence Act to justify your lawless and disrespectful conduct to poor law-abiding workers. Hospitals, even Parliament have been denied power over their indebtedness to ECG, and these critical installations were forced by this approach to quickly settle part of their bills. The Kumasi Technical University made part payment of its debt only after this action by the ECG staff you are heard everywhere including calling a press conference to disparage and threaten.

Sir, elsewhere, you would not have kept your job to be explaining that you ordered the arrest of the Ashanti East ECG General Manager, Ing. Michael Wiafe because the university is a security zone.

It is baffling why the police would carry out your unlawful orders. The Constitution, in Article 19, emphasises that crime is a creature of statute. You cannot point Ghanaians to any law that creates any such offence as prohibiting and penalising ECG staff putting out the lights of a school you designate as a security installation.

The minister insists he had a verbal agreement with ECG over the debt and they breached that agreement by cutting power off to the university without recourse to him. Which police training institution teaches that breach of agreement by a party is a criminal offence?

Police powers are essentially for the protection of the weak and vulnerable and not to unlawfully intimidate or help the rich and powerful to abuse those who pay for the uniform and gun - the only items that separate you from them while you are on duty.

Read also: We don’t feel safe after inconsiderate conduct of Regional Minister – Ashanti ECG staff

You can decide to be wrong and strong and not to apologise to them or withdraw the non-criminal case as they demand. But sir, we go to court with a cause of action. The courts deal with serious business. There is no discernible cause of action in that your empty threat to sue them and certain media houses. Ing. Wiafe, National Vice Chairman of ECG Senior Staff Association, Bismark Adomah, you and your colleagues have done no criminal or civil wrong by handing Mr. Osei-Mensah a bill he ignorantly calls fraudulent simply because he believes it should be about 1,000 and not GHȼ1,500. That is nothing close to what we call fraudulent in law.

Ing. Wiafe, the Minister says you were granted bail after the police took your statement. Sir, that statement is not worth the paper it is written on. Do not honour any police bail condition as it is a joke and outright unconstitutional. It does not carry any consequence if treated with the contempt it deserves.

The Supreme Court, speaking through one of its best minds, Justice Francis Kpegah in the landmark case AWUNI vs. WAEC in 2004 cautioned that “[a] nation that stands by and looks on while the rights of the individual are slowly pecked at, eventually pays the ultimate price of finding its own rights eroded.”

Our mindset should breed excellence - Ace Annan Ankomah has just told students at the maiden ceremony of the University of Ghana 2024 Annual Academic Prizes Awards. Stop the disrespect! Stop the abuse of power! That’s My Take.

Samson Lardy ANYENINI
April 27, 2024

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.