The Ghana Police Service says it did not allow the #FixTheCountry Movement convener, Mr Oliver Barker-Vormawor, now on bail on a charge of treason felony, to donate food to inmates at the Ashaiman Police Station because that is against police Standard Operating Procedure on the feeding of persons in police custody.
A statement released by the Tema Regional Police Command signed by its Public Affairs Officer, Chief Inspector, Stella DedeDzakpasu, on March 20, stated that feeding of persons in custody is the responsibility of the government and that responsibility is discharged according to law and laid down procedures.
It said in line with their processes, food items brought to suspects in custody were subjected to stringent safety and security protocols before being accepted and given for consumption.
The statement added however due to “our cultural sensitivities and arrangements families of suspects were usually allowed to provide food to them from time to time.”
It further stated that “the police are held accountable for whatever happen to persons in our custody and for that reason, we take all necessary precautions to ensure their safety. We therefore do not accept food from any sources except families and people nominated by the suspects being held in custody for that purpose.”
The statement noted that the command had information from some social media platforms that Mr Barker-Vormawor intended to make a donation of some food at the police station and subsequently informed him through his lawyers that the intended donation was against police standard operating procedure on the feeding of persons in police custody so he should refrain from such action.
The statement said in spite of the notice given him Mr Barker-Vormawor showed up at the police station in the company of some other individuals and a musical band with the intention of still making the donation and creating unnecessary drama.
It said police therefore refused him the opportunity to donate the food and after loitering at the station for a while amidst noise making and inconveniencing other persons at the station, he and his group dispersed.
The statement, however, urged all to disregard the claim by Mr Barker-Vormawor that he donated the food at the police station but was later called to come back for it as a result of an order from above because that is false.
It further stated that the command wondered what the “motives of Mr Barker-Vormawor actually are since the feeding of suspects in custody is hardly an enterprise he can sustain even for more than a day.”
It, therefore, urged members of the public to disregard Mr Barker-Vormawor’s antics were obviously calculated to court public attention and gave assurance that the police would continue to discharge its duties to keep the nation safe and secure at all times.
Mr Barker-Vormawor was charged for treason felony, after he was arrested on February 11, 2022, for allegedly posting on social media platform that he would stage a coup if the E-Levy Bill (Electronic Levy) is passed by Parliament.
Police said his “post contained a clear statement of intent with a possible will to execute a coup in his declaration of intent to subvert the Constitution of the Republic of Ghana.
Mr Barker-Vormawor currently on bail will reappear at the Ashaiman District Magistrate Court on March 29.
FROM GODFRED BLAY GIBBAH, TEMA