The Struggles Of The First Policewoman That Changed The Face Of Policing For Women

The story of PW/I Rose Nkansah

The Ghana Police Service(GPS) on Sunday 18th January 2020 paid tribute to the first Ghanaian Policewoman.

PW1 Madam Rose Nkansah who turned 90 on 13th January 2020 was joined by the Police Ladies Association today to celebrate the occasion.

“Congratulations to the first Policewoman of the Ghana Police Service, PW1 Madam Rose Nkansah who turned 90 on 13th January 2020!!! The Police Ladies Association is celebrating with her today.”

But how many people know her story and her struggles that yielded a change in the service for women.

Who is Mrs Rosamond Nkansah then PW/I Rosamond Asiamah

PW/I Rosamond Asiamah enlisted into the Gold Coast Police Force on 1st September 1952 at the age 22. The Force had hitherto been male-dominated since 1894.

Dr Kwame Nkrumah then in charge of Government Business saw the need for the inclusion of women into the Police Force. He gave his assent to the innovation of recruiting women, which became the nucleus of a new branch of the Force.

She was a holder of Senior Cambridge and Teacher’s Certificate “A” and taught briefly before joining the Police Force. She passed out in December 1952 after three months of intensive training with 11 squadmates.

In an address by Dr Nkrumah who passed them out in, I quote” I am sure that when you leave this Training Depot to take up your duties in Accra,  you will maintain the high reputation of the Force which you now belong. As the first woman Police, you have an even greater responsibility; you will be establishing a tradition which will be followed by all your successors.”  And they truly exhibited those qualities and lived by them throughout their years in the service.

She was appointed PW/C3. She had successive promotions and in the same year earned a promotion to the rank of PW/C2 and Ag/Cpl to maintain her seniority.

Supt/Accra Region on 19th May 1953 had the following written about her: “The above-named P/woman appointed Ag/Cpl on 1st December 1952. She had performed all her duties connected with her office intelligently and efficiently and has shown herself to be a capable prosecutor in Juvenile Court. She has also taken a keen interest in all branches of general police work with which she is now familiar. A fair disciplinarian at present but making good progress in what may be considered as an unusual role for a woman. I recommend she be confirmed in the rank of corporal.”

In 1953, she together with PW/11 / Late Elizabeth Lamptey, Madam Fathia’s bodyguard, travelled to Liberia in the company of Dr Kwame Nkrumah as security personnel at the invitation of President Tubman.

In 1954 she attended a six months and instructors course at Police Training Centre, Mill Meece, Staffordshire, UK with the Late PW/5( Otelia Dekowski). The course was to equip them with skills to be later imparted to their counterparts and service personnel.

She was promoted to PW/Sgt on 1st December 1954. She resigned on 16th May 1958 having served for 5 years and 9 months in the Force. It is on record that during their time, they were forbidden to marry or become pregnant and were compelled to resign when they wanted to marry or get pregnant.

It was PW/1 who petitioned and the clause was removed allowing those who had resigned to be reinstated. After resignation, as a professional teacher, she taught at the St John’s Grammar School from 1961-4. She joined GBC in 1965 and was in charge of school broadcasting programmes for a year. She retired and became a full-time housewife trading in building materials until she retired from active service in 1999 and devoted her time to writing books, translating words in her book, octagon, into both foreign languages and local dialects.

Story drafted with additional files from

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