Violent extremism is a threat to peace - NCCE

Agona (WR), Sept. 25, GNA - The Western Regional Deputy Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Mr.





Francis Dussey says, violent acts; armed robbery and kidnapping recorded in some parts of the country are linked with terrorist attacks from neighbouring countries.

Hence the need for all, particularly the youth to be on high alert in their various communities to prevent any extremist acts.

The Deputy Director said measures such as increased community Surveillance, creating awareness at worship centres and other centres of mass gatherings, formation of Neighbourhood watchdog, community patrols were key to early detection and avoidance.

He was speaking on the topic: Preventing Violent Extremism in Ghana, a programme sponsored by the European Union in the Ahanta West Municipality.

The programme began with the screening of a short film on the Consequences of Violent extremism, where the Youth were made to understand that violent extremism could threaten the Country's Peace Building.

The participants at the engagement included; representatives of the Youth Activists from all the Political Parties, Identifiable Youth Groups, Faith Based Youth, PWDs, Artisans within the Municipality.

The Municipal Police Commander, DSP Valentine Akposu, said every citizen should take his or her personal safety seriously.

"Be conscious about your safety and let your relatives know your whereabouts so that you can be traced in case of anything."

He said though the law enforcement agencies were doing their part to ensure safety within communities they suffer from insufficient personnel.

DSP Akposu reminded the participants that Ghana as a country was not immune to violent extremism, because of porous borders, unemployment among the youth, poverty and even through influence of family relations and friends.

He therefore encouraged communities and participants to set up community watchdog groups and high community awareness to identify strangers or sudden groups of secret meetings within communities.

The Police Commander encouraged the participants to freely engage the law enforcement agencies, especially the Ghana Police, with information on suspicious activities within communities to help fight against violent extremism.

Mrs. Faustina Koranteng, the NCCE Municipal Director, said, the Commission with the support of EU and in collaboration with National Security is undertaking the programme in selected Regions especially the five Regions of Northern Ghana, Border Regions, Hotspots Communities and some coastal areas within the Country.

She said the aim of the engagement was to augment the understanding of the Youth on Peace Building Mechanisms, Community-based Mechanisms for countering violent extremism, identifying early warning signals, community surveillance and Basic community-based strategies for countering the proliferation of arms.

Pastor David Adjabeng Boadi-Mensah, Church of Pentecost, Aboadi Area Council, speaking on Peace Building Mechanisms described Peace as the most expensive commodity on earth and the responsibility of all, the Government, the community, traditional and non-traditional institutions and authorities, faith-based organizations and individuals.

He entreated the youth to see themselves as the hope and future of the Nation and that they should live to ensure continuity by loving one another, being true and honest, hardworking, patient, right thinking and promoting peaceful coexistence.

He charged the Youth to shun all forms of violence and desist from the attitude of getting rich quickly which may be detrimental to the collective peace and rather be good ambassadors of peace.

GNA