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There was no election taskforce for bloody by-election - Police Commander

coppa February 19, 2019

The Accra Region Police Commander has said there was no election taskforce set up to man the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.

DCOP Adusei Sarpong told the Commission investigating the violence that broke out at La Bawaleshie -- a community in the constituency -- that election taskforce is usually not set up for by-elections.

He explained that general elections are canonical and are planned for and so the election taskforce is set up from the national level and to the regional and district levels.

“…but by-elections come at a time nobody expects,” he explained as to why there was no taskforce set up for the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.

He added that for the same reason taskforces are a not a usually set up for any by-election.

He noted, however, that a total of 749 officers comprising of 428 policemen and 321 immigration officers were deployed to provide security for the by-election.

Were the officers tactically prepared to man elections?

The Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Jean Mensa told the Emile Short Commission that the EC wrote to the police offering their help to brief the officers on how to handle elections.

Jean Mensa
The EC Chairperson said the police did not provide briefing on how they intended to man the by-election

The police according to her testimony did not revert.

Read: EC received no briefing from police on operational plans – Jean Mensa reveals

She also said the Electoral Commission did not any briefing from the police about their operational plans on how the by-elections would be policed.

“We didn’t receive any detailed briefing from them as to how they were going to deploy…” Jean Mensa said.

She added: “they didn’t provide us with a list of personnel they were sending to each of the polling stations going to deploy.”


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