Ghana’s Minister for National Security Albert Kan-Dapaah on Thursday called on legislators to help stop the increasing activities of vigilante groups which could create huge security problems for the country in the future.
He said though there were no legally registered vigilante groups in Ghana, there was the need to be pragmatic and accept that foot soldiers of the leading political parties had constituted themselves into action troops to molest and unleash violence on peace loving people. “Mr Speaker, we need to stop these groups because they have the tendency to degenerate into militant groups that can have serious repercussions on the security of this country,” he said in an answer to a question on the floor of parliament in Accra.
There have been calls on the government to ban the operations of vigilante groups.
Prior to 2016 general election, two of Ghana’s leading political parties, the National Democratic Congress and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) welcomed the decision by the Inspector-General of Police to disband political party vigilante groups.
The groups had the potential to create problems for Ghana’s democracy. However, since the swearing-in of President Nana Akufo-Addo on January 7, there have been numerous reports of violent acts by vigilante groups within the governing NPP.
Two weeks ago, the Delta Force, a vigilante group believed to be associated with the NPP, forced the Ashanti Regional National Security Director, George Adjei out of his office.
This forceful removal turned violent as blood was shed while government property was destroyed.
The police have arrested 13 members of the group who have been granted bail pending prosecution.