Government says citizens should be assured of their utmost protection from piracy and terrorist attacks. This is among the key issues discussed at the recently held cabinet retreat that had top government officials including President Nana Akufo-Addo in attendance.
The Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah while addressing the press on Sunday said the government has already put in place measures such as beefing up security at the country’s borders to forestall such occurrences.
The minister said government had taken note of the rising incidents of kidnapping, terrorism and piracy in the West African sub-region, with neighbouring countries such as Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast being victims.
“If you have followed what is going on in the West African sub-region, the incidents of terrorism and piracy are on the increase [in the] south, which means [such activities are] closer to our borders here in the Republic of Ghana. The government will wish to assure citizens that it will continue to take all appropriate measures to ensure that Ghana is protected. In the last few months, countries that share borders with Ghana including Burkina Faso and Cote d’Ivoire have experienced a series of terrorist attacks and there is now evidence that at least one Ghanaian [has been] confirmed to have been recruited by some of these terrorist groups to participate in their activities,” he said.
The Minister urged the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to security authorities for action. “We request of the citizenry to be aware and to draw the attention of the security agencies to any activities going on that they may find abnormal,” he added.
The issue of terrorism in the sub-region has been top of the agenda in recent ECOWAS meetings, chaired by Ghana’s Nana Akufo-Addo.
President Akufo-Addo during a visit to Burkina Faso in June 2021 remarked that “the fight against terrorism must be a collective one, and, as such, it is incumbent on ECOWAS to pull together and assist countries, such as Burkina Faso, Niger, and Mali that are at the frontline of the battle against terrorism and violent extremism, to win the fight.”
At the opening session of the 59th ECOWAS summit in Accra, he described reports of terrorism in the sub-region as troubling and must “reinforce our collective commitment to pursue and implement with renewed vigour the decisions taken at our extraordinary summit on terrorism on 14th September 2019. This concerted effort must be a major issue and a priority of objective for the community,” he stressed.