The Tema Regional Police Command has noted that Oliver Mawuse Barker-Varmawor was informed through his legal counsel that his intended donation to the suspects in cells was against police Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on the feeding of persons in Police custody and he should therefore refrain from such action.
A statement signed by the Tema Regional Police Command Public Affairs, Chief Inspector Stella Dede Dzakpasu, said in spite of the notice given Barker-Vormawor to refrain from the donation, “he showed up at the police station in the company of some other individuals and a musical band with the obvious intention still of making the donation and creating unnecessary drama.”
According to her, owing to his disrespect for the directive, the police had no choice but to refuse him the opportunity. The statement pointed out that after loitering at the station’s premises for a while, amidst noise making and inconveniencing other persons at the station, he and his group finally dispersed.
She, however, pointed out that the claims by Mr Barker-Vormawor that he donated the food at the station, but was later called to come back for them as a result of an ‘order from above’, were false and should be disregarded.
Chief Inspector Dzakpasu explained that feeding of persons in Police custody is the responsibility of the government, adding that it is a responsibility that is discharged according to law and laid down procedures.
“Due to our cultural sensitivities and arrangements, families of suspects are usually allowed to provide food to them from time to time,” she said.
She added that food items brought to suspects in custody are subjected to stringent safety and security protocols before being accepted and given for consumption in line with police processes.
“We wish to further state categorically that the Police are held accountable for whatever happens to persons in our custody, and for that reason, we take all necessary precautions to ensure their safety. We, therefore, do not accept food from any sources except families and people nominated by the suspects being held in custody for that purpose,” she said in the statement.
Chief Inspector Dzakpasu, however, expressed shock, and wondered what the motives of Mr Vormawor actually were, since the feeding of suspects in custody is hardly an enterprise he can sustain even for more than a day.
She urged the public to disregard his antics, which she believes are obviously calculated just to court public attention, and assured the public that police would continue to discharge its duties to keep the nation safe and secure at all times.