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Government of Ghana pledges to protect citizens from the increased use of explosive devices.

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EXPLOSIVES
EXPLOSIVES

The government has assured Ghanaians of protecting them against the threats of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), a bomb mainly used by rebels to destroy, and incapacitate personnel or vehicles during insurgencies.

This commitment comes in the wake of rising EID-related incidents and its attendant damages to property and loss of lives in West Africa and the Sahel region.

“While expressing the commitment of the Ministry of the Interior to support initiatives to deal with IEDs, we are also confident that this assessment will help Ghana to develop a more effective and comprehensive C-IED response that will benefit not only Ghana, but the entire West African region.”

“This, I also believe is a critical step towards enhancing our national security and protecting our citizens from the devastating effects of IEDs,” Mr Ambrose Dery, Minister for the Interior has said.

He said this in a speech read on his behalf by Mrs Adelaide Anno-Kumi, Chief Director, Minister for the Interior, at a workshop in Accra, on Counter-IED preparedness and response in West Africa.

The workshop was organised by the National Commission on Small Arms and Light Weapons in partnership with the Small Arms Survey.

A study published in the Journal of Intelligence, Conflict, and Warfare, covering 2010 and mid-2022 showed that some 1,607 EID-related incidents had taken place in West Africa.

These incidents had caused a minimum of 6,680 deaths and 9,032 injuries of various intensities in the sub-region from January 1, 2010 to June 1, 2022, the study found.

That, Mr Dery said had necessitated the government’s special focus in utilising the counter-IED Capability Maturity Model and Self-Assessment Tool to strategise for responses to curb future threats.

He explained that with those tools, the government would identify gaps, challenges and effective counter-IED measures, to contain EID-related incidents in Ghana and support regional counter initiatives.

Mr Paul Amoroso, C-IED Advisor of Small Arms Survey noted that though Ghana had not been directly impacted by IED incidents, it was critical for the country to develop suitable counter-IED capabilities to deal with any emergence of threats.

“By providing a structured framework for assessment and improvement, it empowers governments to address the challenges posed by these deadly devices,” he said.

He said the tools could also be catalysts for international collaboration and donor support, serving as a bridge between nations and propel cooperation in shared mission to prevent and mitigate the use of IEDs.

Mr Samuel Williams Yeboah, Executive Secretary, National Commission on Small Arms and Light Weapons said they were deeply concerned about the use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) by non-state actors.

He said that the actions of such non-state actors, including terrorists, insurgents, criminals, and militias posed a serious threat to security, peace, and development in Ghana and the West African Sub Region.

Mr Yeboah expressed the Commission’s commitment in tackling the threats posed through the use of IEDs head-on, “for the sake of our national and regional peace, security, and the well-being of all our citizens.”

In recent years, IED used in the Sahel region has expanded from Mali to the wider West Africa, and have featured in complex attacks in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria.

In November 2022, the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and its Member States agreed at a regional conference on the need to develop a regional response to counter the proliferation of IEDs and their components.

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