The Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee probing a leaked tape related to the removal of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr. George Akuffo Dampare, has denied allegations that the committee has gone beyond its remits.
This was in response to claims made by the legal representatives of the IGP, who have accused the committee of exceeding its remits, being unfair to the IGP, and discussing police operations in the glare of the public.
However, the Chairman, Honourable Samuel Atta Akyea refuted such claims.
“So if anybody says we are trying to exceed our limits, to what areas are we trying to exceed our remits? We have not gone beyond the claims and the ramifications of the claims to the extent that we are not just calling the whole of the world to come and address the issues that we have gone into. So I am very much surprised that someone will say that we are trying to go beyond our remits.”Samuel Atta Akyea, MP
He emphasized that the committee was well aware of its powers and urged the public to desist from attempts to control the committee.
“What is pathetic sometimes is that when people appear before the committee and begin to dictate as to how we should work. I find it very sad trying to be very civil and polite. But you don’t go before a committee and begin to tell the committee what you think the committee should do. You think we are dummies and we don’t know our left from right?”Samuel Atta Akyea, MP
Mr. Atta Akyea hence called the accusations baseless.
“That is baseless. Nobody can educate us about our remits. Our remits are so clear and we understand what we are doing as a committee.”Samuel Atta Akyea, MP
Responding to the accusation of the committee discussing police operations publicly, he assured the public that the committee took into consideration matters that affect national security.
“We have not gone there at all. Somebody posed the question to another individual which had not been asked and the individual touched on a few buttons, but there were no details as to how the police function in the regions, who is this and who is that.
“We are very much conscious of how some of these witnesses can go bananas so when they try to do anything, we rather reign them in and we curtail over-elaboration. So I don’t understand why anybody is saying that maybe we are permitting people to go beyond our remits.”Samuel Atta Akyea, MP
He underscored that the records of the proceedings of the committee’s probe will prove that.
Mr. Akyea also indicated that the committee is open to witnesses inviting other witnesses to the probe as long as the committee finds it relevant for such appearances upon request.
“When somebody alleges that I am going to prove my case and corroborate my case with a witness, the committee will sit and see the relevance of you bringing the witness. So if it is relevant that we should bring the witness, we will bring the witness. If it is not relevant and we see like, this is another fishing expedition or over-elaboration, I mean we will not permit you to do that and even when you are in any situation and you are trying to present facts, they will look at what we call relevant facts.”
“We have not dismissed the issue of any witness appearing before us. We are looking at the relevance of the witness and trying to resolve the issues within our remits. So if it your think that this witness will help you to shore up what you are trying to say when we look at what the witness is about to say will not add to the evidential weight of what we are doing, as a committee, we have the powers of relevance…That judgment of relevance, they should leave it to the committee to take.”Samuel Atta Akyea, MP
He thus emphasized that the committee has not blocked witnesses supporting the evidence of some witnesses who have already testified before the committee.
He also added that the decision to have the IGP appear before the court for five consecutive days was to allow him to defend himself. He said it was not to disadvantage or waste the IGP’s time.