One doesn’t need statistics from an empirical research to identify with the spate of crime in the Wa Municipality. In fact, observation and real life situations speak volumes than figures.

Motorbike theft and burglary are the two main criminal activities in the Wa Municipality. The situation can best be described as the work of a syndicate especially with motorbike theft. Wait a minute!

A motor bike gets stolen.  The victim tells friends of the situation. A phone call is made. Then, whoever is at the end of the other line asks for the details and specifications of the motorbike. When the owner is fortunate, there may be parting away of some money to retrieve it.

Unfortunately, if the owner is told that the motorbike has crossed beyond reach, it means it has been passed on to an agent for onward sale in Tuna or Sawla or farther – Tamale. In the same way, motorbikes that are stolen from Tamale or Sawla end up in Wa or any other town.

What do you call that?

Of late, shop owners wake up every morning to the disappointing situation of a burglary on their shops. Students’ hostels are not spared either and the burglars inflict wounds on their victims.

Recently, a final year student of the University for Development Studies, Wa Campus had severe cutlass wounds inflicted on him when he resisted an attack from burglars. Quite unfortunate, isn’t it?  However, this situation keeps recurring. Two years ago, a group of thieves inflicted wounds on a female student when she resisted an attack on her.

In short, there’s more to the phenomenon than meets the eye.

Security and safety in the Wa Municipality is becoming a compromised issue and there’s the need to address the issue immediately.  Shakespeare once noted: “diseases desperately grown, by desperate appliances are relieved”, so has crime grown desperately and must be nipped in the bud.

Currently, some streetlights in the Wa Municipality are malfunctioning and precious little is done about it. This occurred when underground cables that connected the streetlights were dug out in the course of laying pipes for the Wa Town Water project. This makes certain parts of the streets very dark in the evenings – this becomes an opportunity for thieves to operate.

Insecurity can’t and mustn’t be business as usual. Security and safety of people is a human rights issue that must receive the attention it deserves. Again, security underpins the socioeconomic development of every society. The Municipal Security Council and the Municipal Police Command must begin to get their acts together and fight this desperate situation now!

By: Alex Blege

The writer is a freelance journalist.

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