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Newton-Offei Writes: We'Re Talking About The President's Safety Here.   
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Justice Abeeku Newton-Offei
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I've just seen a video circulating on social media, depicting an intruder being shoved by Nana Addo's inner security detail, and the attendant commentary suggesting that the security detail overreacted.

Now, in presidential security detail comes in three levels: the outer, middle and inner shields. What normally happens is, if an individual desires to shake the hand of the President at a public gathering like we saw in this footage, for example, this individual must first be searched by the outer shield who will then communicate to the middle shield for further scrutiny/clearance, this is finally relayed to the inner layer who then allows access to the President.

But from the footage, it is obvious this intruder didn't go through these security shields, but simply breached the codon and wanted to reach the President.

Indeed, I was a campaign Aide to Nana Addo, and presently appointee at the presidency. But should I happen to be at a public gathering with the President in attendance, I will not attempt to, out of the blue, go and shake his hands, even though I'm well-known to all members of his security detail.

Anytime I have had the privilege to visi Nana Addo at his office, since becoming president, I've always told him "some of us don't frequent your place because you're no longer a candidate but the commander-in-chief, with 24/7 tight schedule", and he always laughs over it and says "that shouldn't stop you from coming over anytime, Newton".

Such interactions with presidents at public gathering, as we've always witnessed happening in the developed societies, though might appear casual, are definitely well-calculated and those involved comprehensively pre-profiled.

I know, and have personally worked with the security officer who shoved the intruder, and I can vouch for his decency, calm demeanor, civil disposition and total respect for his working-colleagues.

People are saying the intruder shouldn't have been shoved the way it was done, because he looked frail and harmless: now, who says suicide bombers are macho-looking?

Indeed, we're talking about the personal safety of the President of the Republic, and I would plead that we don't allow sentimentalism to replace pragmatism.

We don't have to allow the president to be harmed or assassinated, only to be shedding gallons of unadulterated crocodile tears and reading fictitious eulogies: sentiments expressed by Mrs Matilda Amissah-Arthur is very much fish in our minds.

Finally, I actually foresee Nana Addo inviting the said intruder to his office at the Jubilee House, for a chat. WATCH THIS SPACE!!

Source: Newton-Offei Justice Abeeku / School of International Relations and Diplomacy, GIMPA, Accra/ email: [email protected]

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