The issue of unregistered vehicles in Ghana and its disturbing consequences has moved the police into what has been described as a vigorous and robust action.
In a quick response to the hasty directive of the Inspector General of Police, the Ghana Police Service has impounded a total of 256 vehicles and motorcycles.
Officers and personnel of the GPS were deployed at strategic major roads in Accra, such as the N1, Mallam- Kasoa road and Nima, where riders were stopped and their documentations checked. Those possessing all the proper documentation and licences were allowed to go while those without had their motorbikes and vehicles seized and booked for prosecution.
After a 4-hour operation in various parts of Accra and Tema on Monday, July 17, the police succeeded in impounding 107 unregistered vehicles and 149 unregistered motorbikes, a statement released by the Police revealed.
The Menace of Unregistered Vehicles in Ghana
The use of unregistered vehicles in Ghana, and its associated crimes has remained a lingering problem for various security agencies in the country. The issue however, rose to an alarming rate recently, especially that of robbery with unregistered motorcycles both in the night and broad daylight.
Recall that on Thursday, 13th July, two police officers were shot around the popular Las Palmas restaurant in Lapaz by two unidentified armed robbers riding on an unregistered motorbike ; an incident that left one of the policemen dead, and the other seriously injured.
The robbers subsequently snatched an unregistered car from a motorist to speed up their escape from the crime scene.
In a similar incident, two robbers on a motorbike, snatched at knife point, more than GHs4,000 from an Israeli businessman at East Legon in Accra. But unfortunately for the hoodlums, a brave taxi driver chased and knocked them down with his car, causing their arrest.
These two instances are just a little fraction of the innumerable crimes being perpetrated with unregistered vehicles and motorbikes across the country in recent times.
This formed a major part of what prompted IGP David Asante Apeatu to order a nationwide seizure of all unregistered motorbikes and vehicles across the country. This he did via a wireless message to all Regional Police Commands in Ghana.
Mr. Apeatu explained that the move has become necessary due to the increasing number of unregistered motor bikes and vehicles on the roads.
“It has been observed across the country that large number of motor bikes ply our roads without registration number plates. Similarly unregistered vehicles ply the road. This unlawful act is gradually being accepted as normal and lawful. INGPOL directs all regional commanders to conduct nationwide clamp down on all unregistered motor bikes and vehicles,” part of the message said.
“Those that do not have proper registration be impounded and owners prosecuted…” it ordered.
The memo further directed that the order must be robust and carried out with full vigour. And that is exactly what the police did in this first response to the order.