The main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has urged the government to track the sale and purchase of arms recently brought into the country via the Tema Port in a truck and detained on Friday, 9 May 2019.
The NDC said this is to ensure that the arms do not end up in the hands of “bandits and hoodlums”.
Although the Ghana Police Service later explained that the detained truck had been examined by the security agencies and its contents found “to be imported pump action guns covered by regular documentation authorised by the Ministry for the Interior and relevant agencies, and they conform to the documents covering them,” the NDC, in a statement signed by its Director of Operations, Kakra Essamuah, said it wants the government to consider placing a moratorium on the importation of arms until emerging security threats such as terrorism, contract killings, armed robberies and vigilantism are adequately addressed.
“There is no denying the fact that easy access to small arms and light weapons fuels criminal activities such as armed robbery and terrorism. We are also mindful of research findings which suggest that there are, at the moment, nearly two million small arms in unlawful circulation in Ghana, a situation which does not augur well for our peace and security,” the statement said.
The statement continued: “It is against this backdrop that the NDC wishes to admonish the government of President Akufo-Addo to track the sale and purchase of the weapons in question and to ensure that the weapons do not end up in the hands of bandits, hoodlums and vigilantes. In addition, the government must ensure that only persons who have satisfied the requirements stipulated under the Arms and Ammunition Act, 1972, are permitted to purchase and own the weapons in question.”
“The government may want to consider the option of placing a moratorium on the importation of arms until emerging security threats such as terrorism, contract killings, armed robberies and vigilantism are adequately addressed,” it added.