Director at the Faculty of Academic Affairs and Research at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre Dr. Kwesi Aning has expressed some concerns about how security issues are handled in Ghana.
He has questioned claims by government that security has been beefed up in the country.
Outgoing Interior Minister Mark Woyongo had assured Ghanaians that government had put in place security measures to forestall any terrorist attacks in the wake of recent attacks in the sub-region.
Mr Woyongo had noted that policemen had been deployed to all churches, mosques, shopping malls, and educational institutions, as a way of safeguarding the country.
He also emphasised that patrols have been strengthened along the borders, while information and intelligence gathering units have been set up to facilitate intelligence sharing between Ghana and its neighbours. But Dr Aning says the measures are not enough.
In his view, security has not been beefed up. “The fact that three policemen are standing in front of a building without any equipment and not understanding why they are standing there doesn’t mean security has been beefed up,” he told Class News’ Atiewin Mbillah.
“Let’s not fool ourselves. Those that we are dealing with are not people, who are interested in whether there are 10 or 20 policemen. Ask any policeman in front of any hotel or big building: ‘Why are you standing there?’ He doesn’t know! Ask him what the basic equipment for searching somebody are; he doesn’t know! He has not even been trained on how to search your bag or the boot of your car,” he added.
According to Dr. Aning, it is not the numbers that count, but the quality of the training and the level of preparedness and sharpness.
He noted that when the media continue to report that security has been beefed up, it creates the deception that “we are secure”.
He said the media must ask critical questions and not say “there are four policemen standing in front of X building and, therefore, security is beefed up. That is not security”.
He advised Ghanaians to be sharp and security-conscious and to notice changes around them.