Some illegal miners whose operations are being targeted by the government are likely moving into highway robberies, the Eastern regional police command has suggested.
The Public Relations Officer of the Eastern regional Police Command, DSP Ebenezer Tetteh, in an interview on the Morning Starr said some of the illegal miners who are being chased out of their activities are armed and can possibly switch to robberies.
His comment comes on the back of the increasing rate of highway robberies in the Eastern region.
“I have no basis to draw that conclusion but I will not discount that because some of the people involved in illegal mining are armed but…I have no basis to draw that conclusion even though it is possible.”
DSP Tetteh, however, said the Police is not overwhelmed by the increase in highway robberies in the region adding that they are in control of the situation.
DSP Ebenezer Tetteh added that information gathered indicate that the recent highway robberies are being done by residents who live in the communities.
“We’ll get to the bottom of this matter and make sure they face the full rigour of the law. Especially on the Bonsu-Ettukrom stretch, we have recorded some robberies, and our intelligence shows that those involved are members of the community.”
The Police PRO also called on residents to come to the aid of the Police to enable it to fight in the region by providing information and logistics.
“We have the logistics to fight crime but I’d like to appeal to whoever will assist the police in the local area with logistics by way of motorcycles and information by way of intelligence.”
On Sunday, June 6, a notorious Highway robbery gang terrorising residents in Abuakwa North and South Municipalities in the Eastern region shot and killed a woman after blocking the Akyem Ettukrom to Bunso stretch of the Koforidua to Bunso Highway.
According to witnesses, the robbery operation started at about 3:00 am with the suspects succeeding in robbing many commuters.
One of the robbers shot and killed a woman identified only as Victoria who was on board one of the vehicles.
The robbers escaped into the bush before the arrival of the Police patrol team.
The Police patrol team however in collaboration with a section of the youth in the community combed the bush at site two near Bunso and after many minutes arrested two suspects – Haruna Amadu, 25, and Joseph Nyira, 25.
Two unregistered single-barrel shotguns, one machete, cash sum of GhC257.00, one itel screen touch mobile phone, three-neck bags containing two voter ID cards belonging to two of the victims, assorted mobile sim cards belonging to victims and a black student bag containing shirts of the suspects were retrieved.
Some of the victims who lodged a formal complaint at the Bunso Police station identified suspect Haruna Amadu as the one who shot and killed the woman.
A search in a bag in possession of Joseph Nyira revealed a kente material shirt which the victims say was worn by suspect Haruna Amadu at the time of the robbery.
However, the suspects have denied their involvement in the robbery.
On May 24, 2021, one person was shot during a similar highway robbery attack on Koforidua to Akyem Kukurantumi road in the Eastern region.
The robbers mounted a roadblock about 4:30 am at Barfuor Nkwanta near Sorkode Dwaso junction stretch of the road where Police mostly conduct checks on commuting vehicles
About 20 vehicles were allegedly robbed by the armed robbers who made away with a total of about Ghc50,000 according to a victim.
On Wednesday, April 28, 2021, the robbers attacked a Guest House and a gas filling station at Akyem Kukurantumi about 8:00 pm amidst the firing of gunshots, they also broke into a restaurant of the guest house, caused damage to the doors and took away Ghc137 from the gas filling station office.
They also took away a single-barreled gun which was placed against a wall by the night security man who took to his heels during the robbery operation.