The Bureau of Public Safety (BPS) has called for an immediate and independent investigation into the June 8, 2023, shooting by police in Bortianor, a suburb of Accra.
Five people were killed in the incident, which the police have said was a shoot-out with suspected land guards.
However, the BPS has raised concerns about the police’s use of force, saying that it appears to have been unjustified.
“With great distress, we acknowledge the possibility that the five individuals may have fallen victim to what appears to be an unjustified use of force,” Nana Yaw Akwada, the Executive Director of BPS said in a press statement.
“This is deeply troubling and goes against our constitution’s justice and fair treatment principles.”
The BPS is concerned about the emerging culture of violence by the police service.
In recent years, there have been a number of high-profile incidents in which police have used excessive force, sometimes resulting in the deaths of innocent civilians.
“The trust and confidence of the public in law enforcement are essential, and it is paramount that any concerns regarding police actions are thoroughly examined by a neutral and objective body,” said Akwada.
“It is paramount that any concerns regarding police actions are thoroughly examined by a neutral and objective body. We are minded by outcomes of similar incidents in the recent past and fear that if this trend is not adequately addressed it might endanger innocent lives of citizens, lead to a loss of trust in the police and thus undermine their legitimacy. We are confident that a thorough investigation of this incident will shed light on the truth and enable necessary actions to be taken to prevent the further recurrence of such distressing events,” he added in the statement.
Read below the full statement issued by the Bureau of Public Safety: