The Bono Regional Peace Council (NPC) has sensitized residents of Sampa, a community along the Ghana-Cote D’Ivoire border in the Jaman North District of the Bono Region through workshop on emerging issues of terrorism and violent extremism.
The two-day public dialogue, funded by the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) was in-line with a project titled, “Peace Building for Peaceful Election in 2020”, being implemented by the Council.
It seeks to sensitize border communities on critical emerging issues, including violent extremism and terrorism to empower residents to identify and help tackle threats of terrorism in the country.
In a welcoming address, Alhaji Suallah Abdallah Quandah, the Bono Regional Executive Secretary of the NPC took the participants through the mandate of the Council and asked them to join the Council to preserve the prevailing national peace and social cohesion.
He said though the country had not reported any major terrorist attack, Ghana was not immune to such attacks, saying,
“these terrorist attacks are happening around us within the sub-region”.
The workshop, Alhaji Quandah explained was therefore necessary to build the capacity of community leaders and all stakeholders to enable them to identify such acts of terrorism and extremism, and accordingly report to appropriate authorities for swift preventive action.
He called for collaborative approach among stakeholders towards protecting the nation from such terrorist attacks and violent extremism.
Mr Solomon Owusu, the Jaman North District Chief Executive lauded the project, saying its implementation in the area was of utmost importance considering the location of Sampa as a border town, which serves as entry and exit point for all manner of persons.
He said the district, and Sampa, the capital remained peaceful, admitting that no country or society was immune to acts of terrorism and extremism, hence the need for everybody to remain vigilant.
Mr Ernest Ansah Lartey, the Head, Peace and Security Studies at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) and a facilitator took the participants through the concept of violent extremism and terrorism.
He also highlighted national approaches towards preventing and countering violent extremism as well as exploring local and community approaches to addressing violent extremism and terrorism.