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Decongestion Joint security taskforce invades Tamale forest; arrest 'criminals'

The operation forms part of a widespread exercise by the Tamale Mayor, Musah Superior to decongest the city.

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Six persons have been arrested by a joint security operation aimed at forcing out dwellers of the Tamale forest reserve in the Tamale metropolis.

The operation forms part of a widespread exercise by the Tamale Mayor, Musah Superior to decongest the city.

Musah Superior issued almost a 5-week ultimatum to the occupants engaging in illicit activities in the forest to stop and vacate.

The warning came after police had intelligence that all forms of criminal acts including sex trade, teenage prostitution and the sale of marijuana were going on in the forest.

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According to Starrfmonline, the place became a popular hideout and joint where even female teenagers entered to comfortably smoke wee and abuse drugs such as tramadol and offer sex to continue living.  It had also been turned into a dumping and defecating site until he sanctioned the operation.

It is reported that dozens of armed soldiers, helmeted police in riot gears and petrol and cutlasses wielding Metropolitan Taskforce stormed the forest and pulled down structures, damaged items before setting fire on pavilions and wooden benches in the forest.

The entire forest reserve was a community of its own and believed to have at least one thousand occupants, majority being children as little as 10 to 17 engaging in all kinds of deviant acts.

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The six persons were allegedly arrested with big nylon bags containing substances believed to be wee, and were taken away by the police. Many other dwellers were chased away, however, hundreds had already left before the security team besieged the forest.

Public Relations Officer Issah Salifu Musah told Accra-based Starr FM that the exercise went well as planned.  He explained that over 70 contingent embarking on the swoop were grouped into four and they squared the reserve.

Mr. Musah added that those arrested would be handed over to the police for further investigation.

“The exercise has gotten off to a good start, it’s been fantastic, gone according to plan. We had to divide the taskforce into four groups and you witnessed the arrest of about five in the swoop that we conducted.

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“We are going to handover to the police contingent to send them to their station to interrogate them and try to establish whether or not they have some breaches of the law, in other words, if their investigation proves that they have not conducted themselves properly and that the law frowns on their conduct then so be it, the law will take its course.”

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