The unfortunate demise of a police officer who was providing security to a bullion van that was attacked by armed robbers around Korle-Bu on Monday, June 14, 2021, has opened conversations on how resourced police officers on such escort duties are treated.
The police officer, who was providing security, was shot dead by the gang of robbers at Adedenpo, near Jamestown. Another woman, who is yet to be identified, also lost her life as a result of the shooting.
An eyewitness stated that the men, after shooting the policeman in the head, took his gun and destroyed the locks of the vehicle before carrying away an unspecified amount of money.
Following this incident, an officer with the Ghana Police Service has revealed policemen on bullion van escort duties are not well taken care of especially with their life-threatening job, it only leaves the officer on the escort to be cautious of his security.
GhanaWeb monitored comments made by the officer who spoke to Adom TV on condition of anonymity. He indicated that the officers on a bullion van escort are paid a paltry weekly allowance of GH¢125.00.
He added, the officers are given inadequate weapons to use whenever they are on duty even though their job is life-threatening.
“This bullion van escort work is very life-threatening and you have to be cautious and take your security into your own hands because no adequate provisions are made,” the police officer who has been with the service for over two decades lamented.
He continued: “Most of the time before you go for an operation, you need to be cautious about the weapon you pick because you might end up taking one which may disappoint you in time of difficulty.
“There are times you will cock these weapons and they won’t even fire. We have written to Bank of Ghana to at least ensure that the banks use bulletproof vans but to no avail.”
Meanwhile, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), James Oppong-Boanuh has instructed the Director-General of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) to take over investigations into the latest armed robbery attack on a bullion van at James Town in Accra.
The IGP’s directive was contained in a press statement issued on Monday by the police and signed by its Director of Public Affairs, Shiella Kessie Abayie-Buckman.
“The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mr. James Oppong-Boanuh has directed the Director-General of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) to take over investigations into the attack on a bullion van at Adedenpo, a suburb of James Town in Accra on Monday, June 14, 2021, which led to the murder of a police officer.”
The statement added that crime scene experts have already visited the scene of the crime and are going through the necessary procedures.
The IGP further asked the banks to provide fortified armored vehicles for carting money by end of June this year, referring the banks to an earlier meeting that was held on the subject matter.
He warned that his officers will stop offering that service to the banks if the standard bullion vans are not made available this month ending.
“The IGP is also reminding the Association of Bankers to provide fortified armoured vehicles for carting currencies by the close of June 2021 as earlier agreed between them and the Police Service, else the Police will withdraw its officers for escort duties,” the IGP warned in the statement.