The Coalition for Integrity in Governance (COFIIG) has undertaken a thorough examination of Article 201 of the 1992 Constitution, which designates the sitting vice president as the chairman of the Ghana Police Service. This
constitutional provision has raised significant concerns, and COFIIG is taking a strong stance to bring these issues to the forefront for the Ghanaian public and future constitutional amendment commissions to consider.
COFIIG firmly believes that this crucial role should remain non-partisan and free from political affiliations when a government is formed. It has come to our attention that when individuals in this position declare their intention to run as a political party’s flagbearer, it indirectly compromises the institution’s integrity. This compromise can have severe implications for all those serving within this institution.
One of our primary concerns is the potential impact on the perceived neutrality of the Ghana Police Service. The chairman of the Ghana Police Service Council contesting as a flagbearer can negatively affect the service’s neutrality and competence, a matter of great concern to Ghanaians. While recognizing the Minister of Interior as a potential chair in the vice president’s absence, we are also troubled by the party affiliations that may accompany this role through representation in parliament.
COFIIG highlights the availability of retired commissioners within the commission who possess the experience and expertise to serve as chairpersons. This can significantly enhance the reputation of the Ghana Police Service, particularly during the current political turmoil, which has led to citizen complaints about the service’s professionalism. COFIIG respectfully seeks the wisdom of the Ghana Supreme Court to interpret the mandate of the Ghana Police Service Council.
We propose that when the Chairman of the Council declares their intention to contest on a political party’s ticket, they should vacate the position. It should then be filled by an independent entity or individual, preferably the Speaker of Parliament, entrusted with impartiality and representing both parties in parliament. The continued chairmanship of a flagbearer from a political party poses a potential threat, lacks neutrality, and could be detrimental to the nation’s security and democracy.
Early signs of this issue within their party are already evident. COFIIG extends an open invitation to constitutional lawyers to debate and provide insights on the viability of our concerns, aiming to reach a conclusive resolution. For your reference, please find attached the composition of the Ghana Police Council memberships and its current membership.
Hon. Simon Yaw Awadzi