Statement: ‘200 to 300 Ghanaians in the North have been recruited by terrorists’ — Security specialist

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Adib Saani, a security specialist, said terrorists in northern Ghana recruited 200 to 300 young men and women.

According to him, armed organizations operating in the nation and porous borders foster smuggling, guns and people trafficking.

Promediation’s surveys and evaluations of the security situation in the Gulf of Guinea nations found that armed groups in northern Ghana had enabled terrorist organisations to recruit actively.

200-300 young individuals have joined GSIM-JNIM and EIGS katibas. After training in Sahel camps, these young recruits returned to their communities to proselytize, Adib Saani claimed.

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“Porous borders breed smuggling, guns and people trafficking,” he said. According to WANEP, Ghana has 44 official migration entrance points in 2019.

There were 189 unauthorized access locations on the Burkina Faso border alone. This complicates our countermeasures.

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Ghana has remained peaceful despite rising extremist violence and political instability in West Africa, a WACCE research says.

According to the analysis, the narrative may no longer be viable if proper actions aren’t taken to address Sahel concerns. Terrorism threatens the Coastal States from the Sahel.

More than 53% of ECOWAS members are suffering insurgencies, making Ghana’s border areas a critical issue.

“Recent strikes in Benin, Togo, and Ivory Coast underscore the jihadists’ ambition to spread beyond landlocked Sahelian nations,” it claimed.

Ghana has several unsolved chieftaincy and ethnic disputes, especially in the north. “Extremists’ tremendous exploitative ability puts Ghana at risk,” the study said.

Below is his full statement:

 

As part of a series of surveys and assessments of the security situation in the Gulf of Guinea countries conducted by Promediation, it has emerged that the establishment of armed groups in northern Ghana has also allowed terrorist groups to implement an active recruitment strategy.

It is estimated that 200 to 300 young people have been integrated into the various GSIM-JNIM and EIGS katibas. After undergoing training in training camps in the Sahel, these young recruits were sent back to their villages of origin, in particular to engage in religious proselytizing.

Porous borders fester smuggling, arms and human trafficking. For example, according to figures from the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), in 2019 there were 44 official migration entry points in Ghana.

However, in reality, there were more than 189 unofficial entry points on the border with Burkina Faso alone. This complicates our efforts to counter the threat.

All of these groups operate under the command of Sam Oun (from the Katiba Macina), who is believed to be the leader of the GSIM-JNIM for the MaliBurkina Faso-Côte d’Ivoire border area.

One of the objectives of this gradual establishment would be to establish or reinforce the units present in the Diefoula forest, located on the border between Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire, in order to secure GSIM-JNIM access to Ghanaian territory.

EIGS spokesman Sidi Amar and the head of Ansarul Islam’s foreign fighting unit, Saifoulah, estimate that there are 200 young Ghanaians in the ranks of the jihadist groups. The majority of them are believed to be in the ranks of GSIM-JNIM.

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