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04.11.2004 General News

Gov't sets up committee to forestall internal conflict

By GNA

Accra, Nov. 4, GNA - Government on Thursday inaugurated a 19-member multi-sectoral committee that would formulate policies on early warning systems for the prevention of internal conflict.

The committee under the chairmanship of the Mr Edwin Barnes, Chief Director of the Ministry of the Interior, would examine and analyse the nature and causes of inter and intra-conflicts which seemed to have plagued the country over the past years.

Mr Thomas Broni, Deputy Interior Minister, who inaugurated the Committee expressed concern about "the growing conflict situation in the country" citing the Kokomba-Nanumba conflict, Peki-Tsito land dispute and the Dagbon crisis.

"Conflicts have exacted a great toll on the country in terms of loss of numerous precious lives and destruction of valuable properties running into billions of cedis...."

The Deputy Minister noted that conflicts affected Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs), tourism, and socio-economic activities. The committee's terms of reference include examination of the present system of conflict prevention, logistical position of agencies dealing with conflicts and the mode of information dissemination and reporting.

The committee is also to identify likely conflicts and provide research and intellectual inputs for conflict management.

Mr Barnes said the committee's work had been clearly defined to augment the job of other agencies, adding: "It should therefore not be misconstrued to mean the committee is to take over responsibilities of such institutions."

He assured the nation that the committee would endeavour to do its work objectively with dedication and commitment in order to come out with indices that would help trap signals to conflict.

Committee members include Dr. K. K. Marfo, Deputy Commissioner of Police in Charge of Operations, Major (Retired) Mahmud Sita, National Security Council, Mr William Baffoe-Mensah, Bureau of National Investigations, Chief Superintendent P. Timbillah, Criminal Investigations Department, Lieutenant-Colonel Tetteh Okunor, Ghana Armed Forces and Mr Johnson Alifo, Chief Local Government Inspector. Others are Mr Peter Yankey, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Dr Baffour Ageyman-Duah, Centre for Democratic Development, Mrs Eunice Osei, National Disaster Management Organisation and Ms Joanna Mensah, Executive Director, Anti Conflict Foundation.

The rest are: Mrs Leveniaa Addae-Mensah, West African Network for Peace-Building, Nana Kwadwo Nyarko III, National House of Chiefs, Mrs Rebecca Adjaho, Ministry of Justice, Mr James Ampadu, Ministry of Information, Mr Roland Modey, Ministry of Interior, and representatives of the Ghana Fire Service and the Centre for Policy Analysis (CEPA).

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