‘Extortion Patrol’ At East Legon
Residents of East Legon are in constant apprehension of police officers who mount nuisance roadblocks and extort monies from them.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) who the Director General of Public Affairs of the Ghana Police Service, ACP/Mr. David Eklu when contacted on the issue especially about an audio recording of the experience of an African/American resident in Accra, said the IGP has ordered an immediate investigation into the matter.
Many residents have harrowing stories about the harassing cops whose patrols and roadblocks are more about ‘your boys are on the ground give us something’ than integrity powered policing.
A female victim, name withheld, told Daily Guide ‘I have experienced them several times especially at night. One day they tried to get me out of my car and I refused. I asked the officer to call his superior because I wasn’t dressed properly to get out of the car. They then asked me for something small. I told them I did not have my purse. Anyway they let me go after I asked them what the roadblock was meant for especially since there was one a few meters behind the location they were.’
‘I got stopped by the Islamic University College where there is a permanent roadblock by the crossroads at Adjiringanor. It is usually the guys in patrol cars who mount roadblocks just anywhere, operate for a few minutes and move on. I don’t trust these guys because they can easily plant contraband in one’s car’ she said.
Another victim told Daily Guide ‘they ask for money from my children.’
An African American narrated on audio how a patrol team stopped her in East Legon for a search but ended up not doing any proper search; their primary motive being to extort money from her.
The inconvenience she suffered in their hands according to her should be addressed by the authorities because according to her many others have endured similar ordeal from the bad cops.
With the ‘Year of Return’ around there is the need to address this challenge she said as she called for a town hall meeting to discuss the police harassment.
She recalled how a woman had to pay GH¢3000 to cops in East Legon, money which was refunded when the cops realized that the victim was prepared to take the matter to the top of the Police Administration.
She later learnt that some of the cops come to other areas for such unauthorized operations and so the East Legon cops cannot be held totally responsible for all the negative occurrences although some of them partake in the chase for ‘something small.’
By A.R. Gomda