Mr Samuel Atando Akolgo, the Garu District Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has called on residents of the area to be on the lookout and report any suspicious characters to the law enforcement agencies for investigations.
He said the activities of terrorists and violent extremists from the Sahel Region were a threat to the Garu District, which is a border area and there was the need for the citizens to collaborate with the security agencies to prevent any spillover.
Mr Akolgo was speaking to some identified groups in Garu in the Upper East Region as part of awareness creation and sensitisation project dubbed, “Preventing and Containing Violent Extremism (PCVE)” being implemented by the NCCE and sponsored by the European Union.
Mr Akolgo explained that in recent years there was hardly any day without news on the threat of violent extremism and terrorism or actual occurrences of the violent extremism and terrorism in the West African Sub-Region.
He said countries surrounding Ghana and the coastal states bordering the Gulf of Guinea had recently either witnessed attacks or identified the presence of terrorist groups and their activities within their jurisdictions.
This, Mr Akolgo said, threatened the territorial integrity of every nation and had negative consequences on the development and the lives of the citizens especially the vulnerable and Ghana must be on guard.
The District Director said peace, stability and tranquility were key elements of driving sustainable development of the country, but stakeholders must work to prevent the infiltration of extremists into the country which had the tendency to destabilise the progress made so far.
He explained that the project was aimed at engendering peace, tolerance, and participation in the fight against violent extremism while also engaging the citizenry on the need to promote social cohesion and peaceful coexistence.
It also focuses on empowering the citizens to be security conscious and to volunteer information to the security agencies on suspicious characters to foil possible attacks.
Mr Akolgo stressed on the need for peaceful coexistence and inter-faith tolerance and added that adhering to such positive practices would help prevent triggers of violent extremism and radicalization and help find ways to prevent the youth from joining such extremists’ groups.
The sensitisation which involved women and youth groups among others took place at separate locations including Garu-Tanglego, Garu-Natinga, Nisbuliga, Bugwia, Kpalsak, Dabila and Kpatibuar communities.
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