The Minister of the Interior, Ambrose Dery has denied that the vehicles used by some masked armed men during the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency by-election belonged to the Ghana Police Service.
He said the Inspector General of Police, David Asante-Apeatu told him that the vehicles were not from the Police Service although they had the police logo on them.
The Interior Minister was emphatic that personnel deployed by the police were not armed, neither were they masked.
He disclosed this when he appeared before the Emile Short Commission of Inquiry investigating the incident of violence which occurred during the Asawaso West Wuogon by-election.
During the by-election which took place on January 31, 2019, some armed masked men invaded the residence of the NDC candidate in the election, Delali Brempong, and shot some persons in the house.
Some persons were also seen in a video in some police branded vehicles attack and beat the Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram Sam George and some citizens.
Following these incidents of violence, there has been a public outcry for the perpetrators to be brought to book.
Some prominent Ghanaians and political stalwarts called on the President to call the IGP to order, and ensure that the police administration to explain the deployment of masked men.
It is on the back of this the presidency established the Emile Short Commission of Inquiry to look into the issue.
Appearing before the Commission on Thursday, February 14, 2019, and answering questions from members of the Commission, the Interior Minister stressed that the Police Service in no way deployed armed men on the day of the election.
According to him, information available to him from the Inspector General of Police indicates that the Police Service has no knowledge of who the said masked armed men are.
“The position of the IGP is that he did not deploy any armed personnel on the day. As far as the report from the IGP goes, they were not part of the persons that he brought on the day, and therefore they are not his men,” Mr. Dery told the Commission.
“As far as was reported to me by the IGP who was in charge of operations, I would say that there were Police deployed and there were also officers of the Ghana Immigration Service also deployed to the 137 polling stations,” he added.
He also said the IGP told him that the vehicles carrying the armed men and branded with the Police Service logo, did not belong to the Ghana Police Service.
“From the information given me by the IGP, it does not belong to the Police Service,” he stressed.
Asked if he had any knowledge of who these armed masked men were, he said he did not.
“I later got information that it was an officer of the National Security that said they were National Security operatives, so Mr. Chairman, I do give this as evidence to the fact that it was said.