Mr. Robert Boame, the Oti Regional Director of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has called on political actors, religious and traditional leaders, as well as the youth in the region, to prioritize peace in their communities.
He emphasized that chieftaincy, land disputes, and political issues could potentially lead to violent extremism, urging those involved in such matters to exercise restraint.
During a stakeholder's forum in Dambai, Mr. Boame highlighted the NCCE's recent research conducted in the five Northern Regions, Oti, Bono East, and Bono, which assessed people's knowledge about violent extremism.
He revealed that the findings indicated low awareness among the population, with youth and women being particularly vulnerable to violent extremism, while the Oti Region exhibited the highest level of tolerance among the researched regions.
Mr. Boame advised the youth to avoid engaging in activities that could disrupt peace and unity in their communities.
He also urged landlords and landladies to conduct thorough background checks on prospective tenants.
The forum, organized by the NCCE Krachi East Municipal office with support from the Krachi East Municipal Assembly, aimed to educate citizens on their role in ensuring a peaceful and violence-free municipality.
Mr. Issahaku Yakubu, the Krachi East Municipal Coordinating Director, stressed the importance of education in preventing violent extremism. He expressed concern over parents allowing their youth to stay out late associating with groups that could potentially incite violence.
He called on leaders to address the issues between Fulani herdsmen and farmers in the municipality and assured the assembly's support in creating a peaceful environment for all citizens and investors.
Pastor Michael Osei-Frimpong, Head Pastor of the Dambai Central Church of Pentecost, encouraged participants to embrace the beliefs and practices of all religions in the municipality, emphasizing that peace could only be achieved through acceptance and understanding.
He emphasized that the consequences of war and misunderstandings hindered development and stressed the importance of practicing peace rather than merely speaking about it.
Mr. Samuel Opoku of the Ghana Commercial Bank Plc Dambai branch encouraged participants to take advantage of the bank's various products and develop a habit of saving for their children's future.
Mr. Clement Kwesi Mamadu, the Krachi East Municipal Director of the NCCE, highlighted the vulnerability of women to violent extremism and cautioned them to be mindful of their words, as they could influence their children to join extremist groups for financial gain.
He advised drivers to thoroughly check their passengers before allowing them to board their vehicles for safety purposes, citing kidnapping, suicide bombings, and piracy as common tactics employed by extremist groups.
Mr. Mamadu stressed the importance of vigilance in places where large gatherings occur, such as funerals, bus stations, shops, festivals, and schools.
He urged the public to pay attention to strangers or individuals with suspicious behavior and report any concerns to the appropriate security agencies.
Mr. Mamadu reminded attendees to “See something, say something” and provided toll-free emergency numbers (999, 191, and 18555) for assistance and prompt action.
The forum saw the participation of 170 stakeholders from various groups and unions in the municipality.
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