Mr Henry Quartey, Deputy Minister for the Interior, on Friday said recent developments across the West African sub-region on global security calls for a well thought-out, innovative and proactive approach to migration management.
He said: “As you are all aware, some of our neighbouring countries are confronted with the threat of terror” but in the midst of those challenges and threats, effective border security, which ensures good profiling and document fraud identification could reduce the threat of insecurity.
Mr Quartey was speaking at the inauguration of Training Facility for the Document Fraud Expertise Centre (DFEC) in Accra.
The ultra- modern Training Facility was built by the German Government to assist in capacity building of personnel of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) and other relevant institutions that might require some training services.
The Deputy Minister said GIS had a crucial role to play in securing the country’s borders, maintaining the country’s territorial integrity and ensuring her economic well-being.
He noted that the facility had come at the right time to augment the efforts of Government and that of the Service to improve the capacity of Officers in Document Fraud Detection.
Mr Quartey said trans-national crimes mostly take place through the abuse of documents, especially source and travel documents and there was the need for concerted efforts to be made in the fight against trans-national crimes.
“The training of personnel in document fraud identification is very important and should be enhanced,” he said and expressed the appreciation of the Government of Ghana and the Ministry for the gesture by the federal Republic of Germany.
Mr Kwame Asuah Takyi, the Comptroller-General of Immigration, said the facility would boost the capacity of the Centre in conducting further training for all concerned.
He said activities of DFEC contributed to the global fight against Terrorism, Money Laundering, Human Smuggling/Trafficking, Drug Trafficking and other Trans-national crimes.
He said DFEC was established by the collaboration of the Government of Ghana and the European Union and was commissioned in 2010 and had strong working relationship with almost all the EU Embassies in Ghana and works closely with all their Immigration Liaison Officers and Police Attaches.
The cooperation, he said, was in the area of information exchange on Document Fraud related issues and applicants, and the DFEC conducts investigations upon request from the Immigration Liaison Officers in the course of their work.
There has been also strong collaboration on training programmes for both parties, he said.
Mr Takyi said that cordial working relationship with the Immigration Liaison Officers had gone a long way to benefit the Service and the German Federal Police through the German Embassy in Accra, by assisting the GIS with the provision of the ultra-modern training facility for DFEC.
He, therefore, expressed their appreciation to the German Federal Police for the facility and their pledge to equip it with fraud detection equipment.
He urged personnel at the DFEC to adhere to strict maintenance culture to ensure a long-life span of the facility.
Mr Christoph Retzlaff, the German Ambassador to Ghana, said the inauguration was a very good example of partnership and cooperation between Ghana and Germany.
He said the dream to have to DFEC was natured in 2017 when he took office, they discussed avenues of cooperation and the training centre was one of the projects discussed.
He said Germany’s cooperation with GIS was to strengthen the security structures in Ghana and the region of West Africa.
“We want to support you and cooperate with you in the field of training and capacity building to strengthen security at the borders,” he said, adding that “if your neighbour’s border is safe yours too is safe”.
The Centre was equipped with ultra-modern document fraud detection gadgets to serve as a back office for all document fraud related matters and is being manned by 16 Officers and Men with four of whom are DOC-II Experts.