The National President of the Ghana Bar Association, Anthony Forson Jnr, has called on government to pay extra attention to the resourcing of the Ghana Police Service to boost their ability to main internal security in the country.
Mr. Forson made the call today, the 30th of June 2021, when he delivered the “lest we forget” at the 39th Anniversary Remembrance Service for the murder of three Justices of the High Court, held at the Accra Ridge Church, the day which is known and celebrated as Mathyrs Day.
Quoting Article 200(1) and (3) of the 1992 Constitution which says “there shall be a Police Service in Ghana which shall be equipped and maintained to perform its traditional role of maintaining law and orders, the Ba President posed the question: ls the Ghana Police Service properly equipped and maintained?
“Unfortunately the reality today is one of a veneer or appearance of such equipment and maintenance but stories of corruption of police officers especially those at the district offices and those on our roads leaves a lot to be desired” Anthony Forson Jnr said.
“The General ambience in our police stations is worrying. There may be some very fine, Knowledgeable and respected senior officers in the service but for some reason this refinement does not percolate down to those who interface with the citizenry on a daily basis” Mr. Forson added.
The Bar President further noted that it is time to “have a serious look at the qualification of the personnel who are recruited into the Police Service and improve the quality of the service rendered in return for our taxes”.
Security of Citizens
Anthony Forson also posed a second question directed at the President. He asked, Mr. President, do your citizens feel safe?
To this question, Mr. Forson noted that according to the 1994 Human Development report, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) identified the two main components of human security as freedom from fear and freedom from want. To this end, Mr. Forson indicated that he know the President and his administration is committed to achieving this. He added that it is fervent hope that in the last term of the Akufo-Addo administration, same will be achieved.
“Mr. President, I know you are a firm believer in a situation where the Police Service in the regions would be so efficient as to be competing with each other annually on the reduction of the incidence of crime and an increase in the confidence of the people in the Police. It is my fervent hope that in these your legacy years you will do everytning possible to make your vision a reality” the Bar President said.
In his sermonette during the remembrance service, Rt. Rev. Dr. Daniel Sylvanus Mensah Torto, the Anglican Bishop of Accra, indicated that the barbaric killing of the three Justices, Justice Fred Poku Sarkodee, Justice Mrs. Cecilia Koranteng-Addow and Justice Kwadwo Agyei Agyepong, some thirty-nine (39) years ago ought not to happen ever again in the country’s history. He called on politicians in the country to embrace justice and righteousness as they lead the efforts and quest of the country to grow and develop.
The remembrance service was attended by the President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Vice President of the Republic Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, the Chief Justice, Justice Anin Yeboah, other Justices of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and High Court, and the Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame
The Martyrs Day
The Martyrs Day which falls on the 30th of June every year is observed in remembrance of the three High Court judges, Justice Fred Poku Sarkodee, Justice Mrs. Cecilia Koranteng-Addow and Justice Kwadwo Agyei Agyepong, as well as Major Sam Acquah, a retired army officer, whose lives were taken in the line of duty in the early days of the 1982 revolution in Ghana.
Thirty-nine (39) years ago, on the eve of the 22nd anniversary of Ghana’s Republic, the three judges; Mr Justice Fred Poku Sarkodee, Mrs Justice Cecilia Koranteng-Addow and Mr Justice Kwadwo Agyei Agyepong, all judges of the High Court and Major Acquah, a retired army officer, were brutally and savagely murdered on the night of their abduction at the Bundase Military Range in the Accra Plains.
The Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), appointed a Special Investigation Board with a former Chief Justice, Mr Justice Samuel Azu Crabbe, as chairman to investigate the murders.
The outcome of the investigation led to the prosecution and execution of Joachim Amartey Kwei, a member of the PNDC, Lance Corporal Samuel Amedeka and Michael Senya, and two ex-soldiers- Jonny Dzandu and Tony Tekpor.
Wreath Laying Ceremony
The Chief Justice of the Republic, Justice Anin Yeboah earlier in the morning joined the Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Bar President Anthony Forson, other leaders of the Ghana Bar Association and members of the Judicial Service for a wreath-laying ceremony in commemoration of the 39th anniversary of the murder of the three justices of the High Court of Ghana. The wreath-laying was done at the Forecourt of the Supreme Court where the erected busts of the three High Court Justices is located.