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Border communities in UE at risk of violent extremists – NCCE

Bongo (U/E), Oct 27, GNA– The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has said communities sharing borders with neighbouring countries are at risk of infiltration of violent extremists and terrorists.

The Commission therefore called on Ghanaians to be vigilant and support the security agencies to protect the country from being attacked by extremists and other violent groups.

Ms Alice Ndego, the Bongo District Director of the Commission who made the call during an Interparty Dialogue Committee (IPDC) meeting at Bongo in the Upper East Region noted that due to porosity of the country’s borders, the current activities in neighbouring countries such as Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger could be extended to Ghana if care was not taken.

“Because of our proximity to Burkina Faso where there are currently active extremist activities and the porosity of our borders, it promotes cross-border activities including smuggling of goods and human trafficking and other activities between countries.

“These factors can be exploited by the extremists to spread their activities to neighbouring countries including Ghana,” she stated.

The meeting was part of the Commission’s efforts, under the European Union’s (EU) sponsored project dubbed, “preventing electoral violent and providing security to the northern border regions of Ghana (NORPREVSEC), to rekindle dialogue among political parties and other relevant stakeholders to collectively combat crime especially activities of extremists.

Ms Ndego said extremists targeted the youth, women and children and underscored the need for members of the IPDC to educate the youth not be recruited to foment trouble.

“We must be security conscious and fish out extremists, armed robbers and the bad nuts among us in the communities, if not one day we will all suffer the consequences in this country. I therefore call on all to be vigilant and report strange behaviour and suspicious characters to security, chiefs, assembly members or opinion leaders in the community,” she appealed.

Mr Victor Nuworkpor, the Regional Deputy Director of the NCCE, said the security of most countries in Africa was being threatened by activities of extremists and Ghana must not lose sight of efforts to keep the country peacefully.

The Deputy Director explained that the vulnerable groups such as women, children and persons with disability suffered more when the peace of a country was destabilized and called for increased community surveillance to combat criminal activities.