Prof. Samuel Marfo, a Conflict Resolution Professor at the SD Dombo University of Business and Integrated Development Studies (SDD-UBIDS), has emphasized the need for unity among border communities to prevent vulnerability to external threats, including potential terrorist activities.
Addressing a two-day capacity-building program on the Atlantic Corridor Project in Funsi, Wa East District, Prof. Marfo, also a member of the Upper West Regional Peace Council, highlighted the importance of community cohesion.
He stated, “Once people can come together, they will see any external threat as a common enemy, and they will be able to withstand it.”
The training, titled “Capacity Building Training in Wa East District on Early Warning and Early Response to Prevent Violent Extremism,” is part of the Atlantic Corridor Project funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Embassy of Denmark in Ghana. The initiative is implemented by the National Peace Council.
Prof. Marfo emphasized the normalcy of conflict but warned against its potential to create deep-seated divisions, fostering vulnerability. Citing Africa's context, he noted that Burkina Faso was a well-known destination for terrorists and stressed the importance of training border communities to forecast and preempt security threats.
Mr. Emmanuel Danyomah, the Upper Regional Executive Secretary of the National Peace Council, explained that the program aimed to raise awareness and equip participants with skills to handle conflicts productively. The goal was to enhance the coexistence of diverse communities peacefully.
The vulnerability of the region due to numerous border communities with potential conflict drivers, such as youth unemployment and poor social amenities, was highlighted.
Participants, including security agencies, opinion leaders, chiefs, religious leaders, assembly members, and youth and women group leaders, were expected to develop action plans addressing critical issues in their communities.