The National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) has advised the youth in Bongo District of the Upper East Region against involving in activities of violent extremism to destabilize the country.
The youth were also advised to safeguard against being recruited by terrorist groups and movements to perpetuate crimes and violence to cause harm to human lives and property
Mr Pontius Pilate Baba Apaabey, the Upper East Regional Director of the Commission gave the admonishment at Bongo at an engagement with youth activists organized the NCCE on curbing violent extremism and its related activities.
It was held on the theme, “preventing violent and providing security to the Northern Border Regions of Ghana and had funding support from the European Union (EU).
The main goal of the project is to fight organized crime, promote respect for human rights and rule of law through equipping the youth with relevant information on violent extremism and radicalism and to guard them from being recruited to cause violence.
The engagement was therefore to augment participants’ understanding on peace building mechanisms and enhance their knowledge on community-based mechanisms for countering violent extremism.
The Regional Director noted that the youth needed to be aware of the existence of the organized violent crime groups that had the potential getting into the country from other countries in order to make inform decisions and not be allowed to be used by these groups for bad purposes.
The Regional Director noted that Ghana was bordered by countries in which terrorists’ activities ongoing which threatened the security of the country and the youth who were unemployed were mostly engaged to carry out such activities.
Mr Apaabey noted that the youth needed to take security of their areas into their own hands and be tolerant to promote peace in their respective communities and added that when there was peace there would be unity and development.
Ms Alice Ndego, the Bongo District Director of the NCCE noted that the terrorists’ group were rich and had the potential to use money to influence the youth into recruiting them and therefore the project was to build their resilience to withstand any temptation to be recruited.
The engagement was therefore to enable the youth be able to identify warning signals of violent extremism and serve as community ambassadors to educate their fellow youth to easily identify suspicious characters and report to the appropriate authorities.
“I therefore urge youth to be patriotic citizens and cultivate the culture of tolerance and non-violence and be ambassadors for peace to promote peaceful coexistence and shun violent extremism in Ghana,” she added.
Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), Mr Peter Akolmolga Adoone, the Bongo District Police Commander who took participants through what violent extremism is, its causes and prevention noted that curbing violence was a shared responsibility and the youth had a critical role to play.
The District Police Commander urged the youth to be vigilant and assist the police to combat crimes in their respect communities by sharing relevant information on criminal activities in their communities.