Paga (UE), Nov. 5, GNA - Mr Robert Dampare, the Kassena/Nankana West District Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has urged people living in Border towns and communities in the Upper East Region to form watchdog committees to complement the services of state security.
He said it was time citizens took their security and the safety of their communities seriously as violent attacks by extremists in neighbouring Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger could spill over into the country at any time.
Mr Dampare, who was speaking at a day’s inter-party dialogue committee meeting for political parties and other stakeholders in the area, said the dialogue was to reinforce the role of the political parties as key stakeholders in the effort to prevent the likely spillover of extremist activities in the country.
The meeting was also to explore ways to prevent violence and ensure the security of border communities.
The dialogue allowed the stakeholders to discuss effective ways to identify early warning signals of extremist violence, community surveillance and measures to counter radicalization, among the youth.
Mr Dampare said the meeting, organised by the NCCE, was also to deepen the collaboration between the NCCE, political parties, the youth groups, traditional authorities, civil society, security agencies and community leaders as important stakeholders for ensuring peace and security in the country.
Mr Victor Nuworkpor, the Upper East Deputy Regional Director of the NCCE, urged the youth to desist from engaging in illegal activities that could spark violence and encouraged them to promote national cohesion to achieve the needed growth for the country.
“There should never be an instance where we will compromise peace for violence,” he said.
He appealed to political parties to always adopt effective dialogue to resolve any misunderstanding that may occur between them.
The Kassena/Nankana West District Commander of the Ghana Police Service, Superintendent Charles Ahiamale, said it was time political parties realized that the common enemy they should fight was poverty and not political opponents.
He urged community members to be vigilant and help the police to identify strangers with suspicious characters.
“Terrorism is not a religious issue because they are attacking both churches and mosques and their activities, includes causing fear and panic and robberies. They recruit and use people such as shoe shine boys, scrap dealers and people must be vigilant with strangers.”
He said the police in the district would continue to do community surveillance and patrols to ensure the safety of the people despite the challenges such as inadequate personnel and logistics.
He appealed to the District Assembly to assist the police with motorbikes and fuel to enable them to intensify their community patrols.