Interior Minister Prosper Bani has announced Ghana’s readiness to strengthen her security relations with Burkina Faso and other neighbouring countries.
His comment comes on the back of an assault on the Grand-Bassam hotel in Cote d’ Ivoire by armed attackers on March 16,2016.
The Grand-Bassam resort in Cote d’ Ivoire was attacked heavily by armed gunmen who entered from Mali in a Niger-registered 4×4 and hid their weapons in the petrol tank where 19 people were killed and about 35 injured.
Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) claimed responsibility as well as for a similar strike in the Burkinabe capital, Ouagadougou, in January which left 30 dead.
He made this known to the media after French MP Cochet Philippe paid a courtesy call on him at the ministry on Monday, October 3, 2016.
The MP and his delegation visited the Minister of Interior of Ghana to address the issue of terrorism. He visited because Ghana is surrounded by French speaking countries like Cote D’Ivoire that had experienced terror threats recently.
Philippe said the meeting was important as it was on the “crucial topic” of terrorism.
He was pleased to note Ghana has not experienced any terror attack.
He added that “this topic needs a lot of energy mobilization” and will need communication and collaboration to make it work.
France has been victim of a series of deadly terror attacks over the past two years, killing scores.
Philippe added that France found Ghana a very stabilized country, and the stability is very crucial for the entire sub-region of Africa, especially during this election year.
He applauded the measures Ghana has taken to ensure a peaceful election.
He noted “Ghana has a crucial role to play in Africa”, more so because of its importance in combating terror threats.
In response Bani said: “since the Burkina Faso, Mali and Grand Bassam in Cote D’Ivoire events occurred, Ghana has strengthened and enhanced its security systems to be prepared for any uneventful attack”.
He added that there are “systematic programmes that the police and other security agencies have put in place,” regarding the upcoming elections.
He said Ghana would continue on its path of safe elections.
“This country never witnessed any security breaches before, during and after our election. The coming elections is also going to be the same based on the presence of our security agencies at all flash point areas to ensure that our citizens are able to go through their political dispensation without fear or anticipation of any violence”.
Bani further reiterated that the security forces have engaged groups from all over the country to ensure that they become aware of the state of the security in the country.
The Minister revealed that during the meeting with the French MP, they discussed issues concerning migration and refugees and “that is affecting not only Africa but the Europeans and Americans as well”.
He, however, said that “several processes have begun including the commitment made by the global system to ensure that refugees are humanly treated and have free legal movement of persons from country to country”.
Referring to the United Nations 71th General Assembly, in New York last month, the Minister said “government after government committed themselves to ensure that we should continue to have free movement of persons, proper and legal protection of all refugees as well as proper system of arrangements that brings about the reintegration of refugees, properly documented and properly protected at home.”
The Minister said Ghana is committed to working with the international community to ensure refugees benefit from enhanced migration systems globally, and in Ghana.
“We have come out with a national migration policy which will involve the establishment of a national migration commission of which proposals are far advanced and very soon will be launching”.
“We can assure you that the meeting with the French delegation is very significant also at the tail end of President John Dramani Mahama’s visit to France,” he added.