If there is somebody who admits that the status quo in the police service must be changed completely, it is Mr. David Asante Appeatu the current IGP. If not so, he wouldn’t have been pursuing an agenda to transform the police service into a world class one. What this means is that, our police service is currently far bellow the standards of a world class police and our indefatigable IGP is trying very hard to bring it at par.

That is very comforting and soothing to some of us who have always been insisting that we move away from Captain Glover’s form of policing which is very authoritative, vindictive and victimising to a more planned and consultative democratic style of policing which respects the rights of all Ghanaians including police officers. A police service which places value on subordinate police officers and see them as team players in the transformation agenda but not “slaves” who can be treated anyhow because there is high rate of unemployment in Ghana.

With the new transformation agenda, the police officer must be seen as both a stakeholder and a team player at the same time. The police officer must be seen as an audited asset but not a liability who has no suggestions to offer. The police officer should be the first customer to be served as far this transformation agenda is concerned. Their involvement is key in sustaining this agend so we should not downplay them particularly the junior ranks.

I personally laud the IGP for this initiative because it is a sign of a charismatic leader with a broader vision beyond the horizon. He should be applauded by all who wish to see a better police service whether a police officer or not, because the concept is a good one and must be sustained. From Axim to Paga, the police service needs to be transformed totally and you will all agree with me on that . Often times, major transforms or changes in the police service take place around the police headquarters and in Accra. At most Kumasi, Sekondi-Takoradi and Tamale. We leave other areas in total darkness. In fact, we have psychologically zone some places as punishment zones or condemned places in the police service.

The fact is that almost every IGP that led the police service in recent times pursued some of transformation in one way or the other but immediately they left the office, their initiatives collapsed even though it is the same POMAB members who eventually become IGP. They acts as the director generals of all the schedules or portfolios in the police service so why should good policies and laudable initiatives fall out of place? It is because IGPs are often lone rangers in pursuing their own initiatives since we are still relying heavily on command and control methods of administration. We pretend take instructions because police leaders are perceived to be exercising high levels of coercive power but the fact is that, you can never transform any organisation with coercive power in a democratic dispensation. You will fail woefully. It should rather be an engagement of interest and shared concerns.

The multi billion dollar question now is, how do we sustain this whole transformation agenda if Mr. David Asante Appeatu should leave office today? Are we treating it as one of those fancy initiatives as it has always been the case in the police service? If that is it, then why worrying ourselves with this whole transformation thing since it is bound to fail like all others? May be we just want to try our hands on something whilst the hour hand of the clock continues to tickle.

The problem in the police service is sustainability of policies and initiatives. IGPs come to office with laudable initiatives and policies and when they leave the office, their initiatives and policies die. That has been my major worry with this whole transformation thing currently being pursued by Mr. David Asante Appeatu, the current IGP. The police service lacks a defined succession plan which can often be blamed on the mode of appointing IGPs and political tangos that act as undercurrent in the police service. It disintegrates the police service instead of holding it together. The center has never been held together because of different political interests instead of pursuing a common goal. Things easily fall apart as far initiatives and policy sustainability are concerned so in a democratic Ghana, we see the police service retrogressing instead of progressing.

Within my few days in the police headquarters, I was constantly found in the transformation office and tried to study the concept. I interacted a lot with the team on the transformation agenda being led by C/Supt. Dr. Ben Agordzo and I can confidently tell you that there is every reason for us to believe in the transformation agenda and support this very IGP to institutionalise it before he leaves the office. It is in line with this that I personally wish and feel that Mr. David Asante Appeatu should be given an extention should his tenure of expires.

We often seem to pursue transformation from outside but that is never possible. We want the outlook of the police service to look better in the eyes of the public but concentrate less on transforming the organisation culture which has made us look very ugly in the eyes of the public because we often fail to make members of the police service particularly junior ranks team players and stakeholders. They are always spectators sitting on fence waiting for instructions instead of regular team players or members. We see them as “zombies” with no brains but can only be commanded around with no sense of purpose. We must start to transform from within and it will reflect outside. It looks better outside when transformation starts from within. In that way, the transformation agenda can be pursued easily and be achieved though transformation is a continuous process. It never ends.

In the coming days, I will be highlighting on
i. The transformation agenda and transfers
ii. The transformation agenda and working hours.
iii. The transformation agenda and leaves
iv. The transformation agenda and promotions
iv. The transformation agenda and uniforms and boots and many more facet that we need to tackle if we really want to transform the police service into a world class police.

With the new transformation agenda, we should first serve police officers as our prioritised customers before we serve anybody else.

My name has always been Ahanta Apemenyimheneba Kwofie III and I strongly support the transformation agenda of the IGP.

Ahanta Apemenyimheneba Kwofie III [email protected]