Ghanaian News

Leaked audio: Police suspend interdiction of COP Mensah and two others

The Ghana Police Service has suspended the interdiction of its former director general in charge of the technical department, COP George Alex Mensah, together with Superintendent Emmanuel Eric Gyebi and Superintendent George Lysander Asare.

A statement issued by ACP Grace Ansah-Akrofi, director of public affairs of the police service late Thursday evening said: “In order not to prejudice the ongoing probe, the police administration has suspended their interdiction.”

The three officers were initially interdicted in connection with an audio recording of a conversation which has become the subject matter of an investigation by Parliament.

An ad hoc committee of Parliament is investigating COP Mensah and the two other officers, as well as the former Northern regional chairman of the New Patriotic Party Daniel Bugri Naabu, over the leaked tape.

The trio allegedly had a discussion with Naabu at the former chairman’s office in Osu, Accra to hatch a plot to remove IGP George Akuffo Dampare.

“Worst IGP”
COP Mensah told the parliamentary committee of inquiry probing a leaked tape of an alleged plot to remove Dampare from office that the current national leader of the police, George Akuffo Dampare, is the “worst ever” since he joined the service in the past 31 years.

“Honourable member and honourable chair … what I said yesterday, if you give me the chance today, I will say it again. For me, for the 31 years I have been in the service, he is the worst IGP we ever have in this country,” COP Mensah said, speaking during his second appearance before the committee.

COP Mensah said he has told IGP Dampare about his observation on “several occasions”.

Low morale
On Thursday (31 August), when he made his maiden appearance before the Atta Akyea-led committee, COP Mensah said morale is low within the Police Service now because most of the personnel are unhappy with Dampare’s management style.

Mensah said although IGP Dampare is a poor manager, he is not plotting to get him out of office.

COP George Alex Mensah and his counsel at the committee's hearing in Parliament.

“Dampare is not managing the Police Service well and the majority of police officers are not happy,” COP Mensah told the committee members. “You can call the police officers underground and they will tell you.

“The tape that I heard today, there are so many things in that tape that I don’t remember and there are so many things that we discussed that are not on the tape. I’ve met Bugri Naabu four times and we have discussed many things, some of them private things that I am not ready to discuss in public.

“I had a meeting with Bugri Naabu but I don’t remember having any plan to remove the IGP because I don’t remove IGPs,” COP Mensah said.

Tape is authentic
When he took his turn before the committee on Monday, the former Northern regional chairman of the NPP Daniel Bugri Naabu revealed that he had the recording of the leaked tape made.

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, set up a committee to carry out a thorough forensic audit to detect those behind the tape.

Naabu confirmed that the conversation took place between himself and three police officers at his office near Osu Police Station.

He identified the voices on the tape as Superintendent Asare, COP Mensah and Superintendent Gyebi. He told the ad hoc committee of Parliament that the officers hatched the plot to remove the national police chief because, Mensah claimed, Dampare’s actions were not in favour of the governing NPP and could cause the defeat of the party in the 2024 elections.

Naabu told the lawmakers that he recorded the conversation as evidence.

“The reason for recording this tape is that they are coming to tell me to go and tell the president [Nana Akufo-Addo] something … and it is either I don’t go to tell the president and then I and my party suffer for it and if I also go to talk to the president, it is good to tell him the right thing and since I cannot keep everything they were telling me at that point, it was very good to record, and I know the president, [if] I go and tell him something, and it turns [out] not to be true, next time he won’t give me respect,” Naabu said.

“I didn’t do it myself but I requested somebody who knows how to do the recording to come and do it for me. I didn’t use a phone – I went to the mall and got this ordinary tape,” he recalled.

Meanwhile, the government has strongly refuted allegations of a clandestine scheme to oust the Inspector General of Police before the 2024 general election.

“The government has no plan to sack the IGP and we are sure that nothing will be allowed to disturb the peace from now till 2024,” the Interior Minister Ambrose Dery said when the tape was leaked in July.

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