President Akufo-Addo has charged the National Security Ministry and all its partner security institutions to prioritize the full implementation of the country’s first ever National Security Strategy (NSS) in order to ensure that Ghana remains a peaceful and secure state.
The NSS is essentially the blueprint reference document for the coordination of the total national response effort to protect and safeguard the nation from threats, risks, challenges to its security and stability from both the domestic and international environments.
Addressing a brief ceremony yesterday, June 7, 2021, to officially launch the first ever National Security Strategy and to commission the new national security building at the forecourt of the National Security Ministry, President Akufo-Addo said the strategy has been developed at a time when the threat to the security of the country and the West African sub-region is on the increase. The President therefore noted that the country’s security apparatus owe the people of Ghana a duty to implement the strategy without fail in order to secure the territorial integrity of the nation at all times
“The strategy, regardless of its potency, cannot yield desired results until successfully implemented. Our success will therefore be based on how we implement the National Security Strategy,” President Akufo-Addo said.
“The Ministry of National Security will serve as the lead government ministry for the implementation of the strategy,” President Akufo-Addo added.
*Need for Education and Sensitization on the NSS*
The multifaceted nature of the National Security Strategy which assigns different roles to various ministries, departments and agencies according to President Akufo-Addo, “underscores the need for extensive education and sensitization on the content of the strategy”.
“I have thus tasked the Minister for National Security to organize workshops for all Ministers, Regional Security Councils, leadership and Members of Parliament, members of the Judiciary, religious leaders, the National Peace Council, the National House of Chiefs, Civil Society Organisations, youth and women’s groups, and various educational institutions, to deepen their understanding of their roles in the implementation of the strategy,” President Akufo-Addo noted.
In his address, President Akufo-Addo acknowledged, “On matters regarding the implementation of strategies that are beneficial to the state, resource allocation and budgetary funding are key”. To this end, the President welcomed the provision in the strategy that requires the Ministers responsible for Finance and National Security to work hand in hand to establish a fund to guarantee adequate resources for the execution of the NSS.
“Informed by this, the National Security Strategy requires the Minister for Finance to collaborate with the Minister for National Security to establish a security fund to support the implementation of the strategy in emergency and crisis,” President Akufo-Addo stated.
“To enhance the implementation of the National Security Strategy, the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies, and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies are to make specific budgetary provisions for the allocation of funds in the national budget. These budgetary provisions shall be made in accordance with the roles and responsibilities as signed per the National Security Strategy,” the President added.
*National Security Minister*
Minister for National Security, Albert Kan Dapaah, in his statement noted that the NSS has been reviewed “by all relevant stakeholders, internal and external security experts who have ensured that the document met international standards and is fit for purpose”.
“Although Ghana continues to be heralded as the beacon of peace in Africa, we must not rest on our oars. Evidently, the threats that confronted us decades ago have evolved faster and with greater intensity than anticipated and this, Your Excellency, underscores the need for swift implementation of the National Security Strategy to decisively mitigate new and emerging threats,” the National Security Minister, Albert Kan Dapaah said.
*Brief on the Need for A NSS*
The aspiration of Ghana to remain a sovereign, free, peaceful, democratic state and ensuring the survival, safety and well-being of the citizens that occupies its rightful place among the comity of nations as a respected and influential nation, is confronted by a number of existing and imminent potential security threats risks and challenges.
The ever-evolving nature and scope of these threats, risks and challenges demand a comprehensive and dynamic new orientation to the concept and management of Ghana’s national security. The traditional limited defensive scope and posture of Ghana’s national security response to security challenges dictated by political instability are no longer neither adequate nor effective-enough response to the currently evolving threat and risk profiles that challenge the country.
Our historically traditional orientation of national security tends to give the notion that the sole purpose of the national security apparatus is to defend the territorial integrity and the sovereign rights of Ghana and the security of the regime. This orientation loses sight of the fact that such territorial defence is actually a means to ensure the security of the citizens of Ghana, to protect and to empower them to live in peace and dignity.
In seeking to correct this traditional orientation, the National Security Strategy (NSS) recognises the individual Ghanaian citizen and his local community as the primary referent objects of national security policy planning and delivery. In addition to the defence of Ghana’s territorial integrity and sovereignty therefore, the safety, security and well-being of the citizens of Ghana is paramount in the NSS.
A more pre-emptive, all-inclusive approach with a blend of both traditional national security responses and human security responses is therefore adopted in the strategy. Effectively ensuring national security and stability would in this context, require that Ghana adopts a comprehensive and integrated national security strategic framework that ensures constant monitoring of the threat situation, proactive prevention, mitigation and management of the threats, risks and security challenges to our national interests.
It is within this context that the NSS is formulated. It’s formulation and implementation are based on the central tenet of a whole-of-government and whole-of-society involvement that is grounded in the principles of unity of purpose and coordination of effort to enhance social cohesion, tolerance, national security and national stability.
The responses in the NSS to the threats, risks and security challenges posed to Ghana, seek to ensure the self-preservation of Ghana as a prosperous, stable and sovereign state, that is able to provide for the safety and well-being of her citizens and inhabitants.