Editorial: Installation of security cameras on our streets is commendable
With Christmas just around the corner, activities of armed robbers and petty thieves will soon be on the ascendency. Many residents in our big towns and cities are going to be at the mercy of these miscreants, who will rob at gun point or break into cars to steal. Those coming from the rural areas to the cities, such as Accra and Kumasi are, in most of the cases, not spared of this harassment.
The Chronicle is, therefore, happy that the police are acting proactively by carrying out swoops on the hideouts of these criminals and arresting them before they strike.
According to a story carried by Ghanaian Times, on Monday, a number of these suspected criminals were arrested at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, Railway Station and the Kotoka International Airport enclave. A number of prohibited items were reportedly found on some of the suspects.
Reactive attitude should never be adopted in the fight against crime, such as armed robbery and others. In our view, the best way to deal with crime is the adoption of proactive measures, which the Police Administration is currently pursuing and we commend them for that.
With our presidential and parliamentary elections a few weeks away, the activities of criminals can feed into the larger scheme of things, which include, but not limited to, disruption of the polls.
This is why the police must always be on the alert. For us as citizens we cannot expect much from the law enforcement agency, if they are not properly equipped. The police, as we have always pointed out, are not magicians to spot every crime in the country if they are not supported with modern gadgets to execute their mandate.
Swoops are good to chase out criminals from their hideouts, but equipping the police with modern gadgets will ginger them to do more to protect the people of this country.
The onus, therefore, lies on the government to do the needful – equip the security agency to fight crime. The Chronicle has, however, taken note of the fact that the government is not sleeping on the job. Those driving in parts of the country, especially in the Accra Metropolis, will attest to the fact that several security cameras are being installed all over the capital city.
These security cameras, which installations are being done by funds approved by Parliament, will enable the security agencies to sit in the comfort of their offices and monitor what goes on in the city.
Robbing from innocent Ghanaians on the streets, especially at road intersections is gradually gaining currency in the country, particularly in Accra and Kumasi. Unfortunately, tracking these criminals is always a herculean task for the security agencies.
But with the security cameras all over the place, the police can easily follow the suspects and arrest them. This modern way of fighting crime has been in practice in the developed countries for some time now and The Chronicle is happy that Ghana has also adopted it.
If the criminals know that every move they are making is being monitored, they will think twice before embarking on robbery attacks. Our concern though, is how those monitoring these cameras are also going to be monitored by a higher authority. We may be celebrating the installation of these cameras today, but if we, as a country, fail to do our homework well, we, the same people will be laughing at the wrong side of our mouths tomorrow.
It is hackneyed in Ghana to see people tampering with evidence because they have been compromised by an interested party. Our fear is that if the monitors allow themselves to be compromised by criminals, by turning off the cameras at particular location just for them to strike, or erasing evidence to set the criminals free, then all the money we have wasted in procuring the cameras would have gone waste.
This is why we think the supervising ministry must put all measures in place to ensure that the security cameras serve their intended purpose.