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Wear the bulletproof vests; stop saying they’re uncomfortable – Bawumia tells Police officers

The Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has sent a strong warning to Police officers in the country to wear their bulletproof vest and desist from the complaining about the discomfort it brings since it’s a life saviour.

Since the death of five officers who were shot dead by gun-wielding men in the line of duty for in the past month, there has been an outcry from Police personnel’s who feel their life is at risk since they have limited access to weapons and lifesaving equipment’s to combat lawbreakers and armed robbers.

Dr. Bawumia revealed that thousands of bulletproof vests have been delivered to the Police to help stem the unfortunate incidents officers face in their line of duty.

Speaking on the occasion of the burial of Lance Corporal Awal Mohammed in Kumasi, Dr Bawumia urged the police to put on the vests anytime to save their lives instead of to killing them when they refuse to wear it.

“Just this week, 4500 bulletproof vests have been delivered to the Police to help stem these unfortunate incidents. I urge police officers to wear the bulletproof vests and not say that they are uncomfortable to wear,” Dr Bawumia said.

Adding that “other logistical items have been delivered to the Police including non-lethal weapons. Government will continue to support the Police and more logistics will be delivered soon.”

Whiles consoling the bereaved families he also assured them that “those who have been arrested will face the full rigours of the law and those still on the run will be relentlessly pursued. They can run but they cannot hide. A reward of GHC 10,000 has been announced for the arrest of the person on the run. Insha Allah, we will get all of them.”

Three suspects were arrested in connection with the death of Sgt. Michael Gyamasie and L/CPL Awal Mohammed who were shot in Wednesday’s killings.

Read Dr Bawumia’s Full Statement below

Statement by Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia on the Occasion of the Burial of L/CPL Awal Mohammed in Kumasi

Hon. Minister, Police Commander, Imams, bereaved families, and all sympathizers here present,

I came here today in a very sad mood. Government is very much disturbed by what happened on Wednesday 28th August leading to the loss of two police officers, namely Sgt. Michael Gyamasie and L/CPL Awal Mohammed in the line of duty. This development of violence, maiming and killing of security officers going about their lawful duties to protect lives and property in the country are acutely distressing.

On behalf of the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, I convey the heartfelt condolences of the entire government to the bereaved families and pray Allah for a peaceful rest to the souls of our beloved. We assure you of the prayers and support of government in these trying times.

I take this opportunity to admonish all Ghanaians to see the police and security officers as our family members, friends, and protectors. As a nation we must all remember that peace and security are two cardinal necessities in life and those who have elected to sacrifice to help us maintain peace and order ought to be respected and protected.

Sgt. Michael Gyamasie and L/CPL Awal Mohammed have been two hardworking officers who discharged their duties creditably in the interest of the nation and should therefore not suffer this unfortunate fate. These gallant men will forever be remembered for their acts of sacrifice for the nation. Any life lost is a life too much. I have full confidence in the IGP and his men to work hard to bring the perpetrators of this dastardly act to book. We are going to go after the attackers. In this particular case, three persons were arrested a few hours after the incident and one of the suspects is on the run. Those who have been arrested will face the full rigours of the law and those still on the run will be relentlessly pursued. They can run but they cannot hide. A reward of GHC 10,000 has been announced for the arrest of the person on the run. Insha Allah, we will get all of them.

In the last month, 5 unarmed police officers have been killed by criminals in the line of duty. This is unacceptable and the government will not sit down for this to continue. Henceforth all officers of the Police Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) will now be armed to ensure their protection. Also, all police officers who go on “outside duties” will now be armed with weapons, bulletproof vests and helmets to be able to protect themselves.

Thankfully, just this week, 4500 bulletproof vests have been delivered to the Police to help stem these unfortunate incidents. I urge police officers to wear the bulletproof vests and not say that they are uncomfortable to wear. Other logistical items have been delivered to the Police including non-lethal weapons. Government will continue to support the Police and more logistics will be delivered soon. We must protect our police for them to be able to protect us.

We are retooling the Service and Government has delivered 567 vehicles to the Police service since 2017. We have also given clearance for the recruitment of 4000 officers into the Service to boost the numbers.

The National Police Commanders conference is currently taking place at Sogakope in the Volta Region. All regional police commanders are participating and it is our expectation that they will come up with enhanced strategies to deal with the issue.

This issue is a security matter and should not be politicized. Government will continue to ensure the Police is well resourced.

Ultimately, the welfare of officers is of concern and Government has cleared all the backlog of promotions for the Police that was outstanding. The issue of compensation has also been resolved with very enhanced packages for Policemen injured or who die in the line of duty. I have asked the IGP to facilitate and expedite the process of delivering the compensation packages due to the families of all the deceased officers.

There is a need for the public to support the Police to enable them to effectively discharge their mandate. They deserve our support. Whilst we are sleeping in our homes they continue to protect us at the risk of their own lives. Once again, our hearts are with you, the family and we pledge government’s support during this moment.

Thank you and may Allah accept our supplications and be merciful to the soul of L/CPL Awal Mohammed.

May Allah grant him Jennatul Firdaus.

God Bless You and God Bless our homeland Ghana

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