The Ghana Police Service has said an internal memo directing all personnel of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) to stop checking drivers’ licences and road worthy certificates “until further notice”, was leaked to the public.
A wireless message which was signed by Commissioner of Police Ransford Moses Ninson Tuesday said “all motor checks in the country [are to be] suspended with immediate effect.”
It said personnel of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department of the Ghana Police Service are to be “used only for traffic management duties only”, while personnel of the Highway Patrol Unit are only to check for arms and drugs.
Per the order, police will not check documentation, road worthiness, and allied requirements of motorists.
Superintendent Cephas Arthur, Director of Public Affairs of the Police Service, told Kwami Sefa Kayi on Peacefm’s Kokrokoo Wednesday that the memo was “leaked”.
Asked how a state organ tasked with ensuring the protection and safety of Ghanaians be breached and an internal formal directive leaked, he replied; “The leaking of these internal memos is a conundrum that we are all fighting.
“Perhaps it is something that we have to live with. … All it takes is for one miscreant police officer…to take a shot of an internal memo and send it [out]. It is something that is very untoward. In the police administration, we’re deploying our rules and regulations to check it but we may never be able to totally uproot it. We have to manage it,” he said.
Justifying the decision to halt motor checks across the country despite criticisms that it is unsound, the Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Police Service explained that the unrelenting traffic jam on Ghana’s roads needs attention, hence the directive to shift focus away from other operations of the police.
“All attention is going to be concentrated on managing traffic which has become a source of concern in our communities just to make sure that we create a more congenial atmosphere for travelers and commuters in our cities and our towns,” he stated.
It is not clear when and if the directive will be withdrawn.