By Edmond Tetteh a Journalist
The Sleeping town of Nkoranza in the Bono East Region came alive in the last couple of days for all the wrong reasons. The youth of the town vented their spleen on the townsfolk and the Police for what they thought to be the disgusting murder of one of their own. The victim, Albert Donkor, was said to have been tortured by the Police and subsequently died in their custody. The Police, however, had their own story. To the Police, Albert was a suspect in some robbery incidents in Nkoranza and the entire Bono East Region. The Nkoranza youth disputed the police claims and decided to show the uniformed officers their violent side. They attacked and destroyed property in the town, including the town’s Police station. Obviously, a condemnable action, which should be made in the clearest language and terms in the best possible way. Violent reactions to disagreements with the Police have not solved any problem anywhere.
The Head of the Regional Security Council, REGSEC and Bono East Regional Minister, Kwasi Adu Gyan described the action of the youth as sheer hooliganism. An unfortunate situation by some vagrants, who took advantage of a sad issue to satisfy their personal whims. The youth should have known better, that taking the law into one’s hands in such bizarre circumstances rather worsens matters instead of melting a volatile situation and calming nerves. Security experts think in such situations, cool heads must prevail to find proper solutions. Now instead of one death, probably in mysterious circumstances, two are dead with scores injured because of the adrenaline rush of the youth of Nkoranza.
For the Police, the least said about their latest action, the better. Maybe it’s time to trigger happy officers, still in the service, to find a new job in the hunting fields. The IGP indeed has a huge task to fish them out to be appropriately tamed. The continuing emptying of guns or bullets on innocent members of the public, not forgetting the torture of alleged criminals, its 20th-century policing and must not be countenanced. One would have thought the Police have learned bitter lessons from such incidents, particularly when they were severely bashed for their indiscretions at Ejura. The youth of Nkoranza did not obviously behave well by the mayhem they unleashed in the town. The Police did not equally cover themselves in glory looking at the manner they handled some of the issues at play.
Already, some personnel have been asked to pack out of the town in order to prevent any further riots. No amount of compensation and apology can bring back those who lost their lives. And for those who got injured in the skirmishes, they have joined the long queue of victims of such sad situations who never saw any light at the end of the tunnel. Only a full-scale investigation that will eventually punish culprits of the Nkoranza melee, will probably calm tempers and bring finality to the matter.
The MP for the area backs any enquiry that will be instituted, saying he can’t let the two deaths be in vain. He said he will trigger a parliamentary process to ensure a proper probe that will uncover all the truth. There have been past reports from similar probes which are still gathering dust. We don’t want to believe the Nkoranza incident will go the same way. If there were doubts about previous enquiries, the Police have another opportunity to redeem their image. And it’s an opportunity they should not squander. Else their image will take a further nosedive.