Article 200 of the 1992 Constitution clearly spells out the mandate of the Ghana Police Service. It states inter alia that the Police Service shall be equipped and maintained to perform its traditional role of maintaining law and order.
To perform this mandatory function, the service should be adequately equipped to cope with challenges of the times to be able to provide appropriate response any time sections of the public express a sense of insecurity, and forestall any unpleasant situation.
The government in the last couple of years has intensified its efforts at positioning the Ghana Police Service to adequately respond to contemporary security challenges, putting together various initiatives and interventions to improve the status of the service. The numerical strength of the Police Service has moved from 23,204 in 2012 to 30,635 in 2014. This has resulted in a current police-population ratio (PPR) of 1:784 as against 1:1,100 in 2010.
Even though Ghana could not meet the United Nations’ (UN) policing standard of one police person to 500 people by 2014, there has been significant improvement in its PPR, which has led to an increase in police visibility and accessibility, which are key prerequisites in crime prevention, detection and control.
It is against this background that we welcome the news that the Police Service has begun a massive recruitment drive aimed at enlisting personnel into all sectors of the service. A statement signed by the Director-General of Human Resources Development at the Ghana Police Service, COP Beatrice Vib-Sanziri, listed close to 50 units which qualified personnel will be absorbed to fill. The units include general duty, administration and health.
Interested persons are expected to purchase a voucher of GH¢50 from the GCB Bank, to enable them apply online. The deadline for purchasing vouchers has been set on December 15, 2017 whilst online application closes at 23:59 hours GMT on Sunday, December 24, 2017.
The last time the police embarked on a similar exercise was in 2016 prior to the December 2016 general elections. In that exercise, a total of 597 personnel were successfully recruited into the Police Service.
Generally, recruitment into the Police Service and other security agencies has become an avenue for scammers, who promise hundreds of people jobs and end up duping them. We recall, for instance, that in January 2015, a former senior police officer, COP Patrick Timbilla, was interdicted following his alleged role in such a scam. He was dismissed after two years of investigations.
We, therefore, find it imperative to caution the general public to avoid being lured into parting with sums of money ostensibly to facilitate recruitment into the service. Indeed, the public has the responsibility to report any such unscrupulous persons to law enforcement agencies for appropriate action.
The Police Service certainly needs the numbers for adequate policing and law enforcement duties, but the recruitment exercise must be done through the right channel.