The Police Administration yesterday put a lot of hearts at rest, when it said emphatically that it has no intension to ban health walks organised by political parties.
But, the Police issued a warning that that they would ruthlessly deal with political party supporters, who would foment trouble during health walks.
“We would arrest and prosecute culprits to serve as a deterrent to others,” the Police Director-General in-Charge Of Operations, Commissioner of Police (COP) Christian Tetteh Yohuno, was quoted as saying.
The comments is the strongest yet, since the health walks became a subject of concern, following clashes between the two major political parties, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Party (NDC), during their health walks.
With barely a forthnight to the polls, the parties had clashed three times in separate incidents during health walks.
Members of the opposing political parties sustained injuries, which had resulted in wave of calls for the ban of all health walks as a method of political campaigning in the country.
Those who are making the calls, express the fear that the clashes can degenerate into full-blown conflict that can mar the peace of the country.
To maintain peace, therefore, they suggested that health walks should be banned.
However, there are others, who believe that the way to go is to regulate health walks, and map out routes, such that NDC and NPP supporters would not meet any time they engage in such exercises.
Others are of the view that members of the two parties should not be allowed to embark on health walks on the same day.
The Police appear to hold similar view as those who advocate that health walks should not be banned, but regulated.
The Ghanaian Times support the position that health walks should not be banned, but has a little apprehension about the commitment of the police to carry out their threat to deal with trouble makers.
Our fear is that the police may not show zeal in dealing with politically motivated violence and conflict as yet.
Numerous attacks, violence and conflicts have been committed by supporters of these same political parties, but the Police have not been able to deal with them mercilessly as promised.
The Times is, therefore, not wrong in saying this is why the NDC and NPP supporters continue to engage in violent conduct, thereby creating anxiety among members of the public.
Indeed, all peace-loving individuals and organisations hope that the latest caution by the Police would not follow the same pattern.
We look forward to the Police cracking the whip, to bring any unruly political party supporters to book, as a way of maintaining peace, law and order in the country.