By Cecil Mensah
The Parliamentary Candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) for Madina Constituency in the Greater Accra Region; Alhaji Abubakar Saddique Boniface, has asked the Inspector –General of Police (IGP) to tread cautiously with the decision to disband social media during the November 7, general elections.
According to the former Minister for Water Resources; Works and Housing, in the NPP’s administration led by ex-president John Agyekum Kufuor, the IGP, must not even consider it in the first place, because it will create suspicion in the minds of a section of the general public that the police service is working to the advantage of one political party.
He said, the IGP must not even consider the decision in the first place, let alone announce it, when he interacted with some selected journalists in the country.
It could be recalled that the IGP, John Kudalor, last week told journalists at a meeting that the police administration was considering shutting down social media services on November 7.
According to the IGP, the abuse of social media platforms by political parties and the ordinary Ghanaian, have often created tension in the country, hence the decision to consider shutting it down on elections day.
The parliamentary aspirant made this statement, when he appeared as a panelist on Accra- based, Oman FM.
He revealed that, the IGP’s decision that the Police administration was considering a ban on social media, was a decision that was not thought through.
He said, the conduct of the IGP, was as if the speech, he read at the said meeting with the journalists, was handed to him just before the programme was about starting.
He stated that he knew the IGP personally and ‘he is one of the finest gentlemen in uniform,’ but his decision will raise suspicion during and after the elections.
He noted that, the media is the fourth estate of the realm and a very powerful tool, even though it is sometimes silence on its role as an arm of government.
He added that, even though the police administration sees the need to safeguard the security of the nation during the cliff hanger elections, but if care was not taken, it would raise suspicion among some Ghanaians.
He said, the decision;if not well thought would raise some suspicions during and after the elections thereby leading high tensions in the country.
He admitted that, even though some unscrupulous individuals have been using social media to create fear and panic among Ghanaians,does not call for a total ban on it during the elections.
He explained that even though the police administration is mandated to ensure peace, it must not been seen to be doing things that will raise tension in the country.