23.04.2005 Regional News

Be vigilante, professional and fair, says Owusu-Ankomah

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Elubo (W/R), April 23, GNA - Papa Owusu-Ankomah, the Minister of the Interior, has appealed to security personnel manning the Elubo border to demonstrate a high sense of professionalism, vigilance and fairness. ''Without it, your role as security personnel, the interest of the nation and its security and protection, would be compromised,'' he said. Papa Owusu-Ankomah said this when he paid a day's visit on Friday to Elubo on the Ghana/Cote d'Ivoire border.

He said security personnel at all the entry points of the country have an enormous responsibility to ensure that there was peace in the country and this must not be compromised.

"We should be awake when the citizenry are asleep and we cannot do this if we do not sharpen our eyes, re-focus our vision and be vigilant.''

Papa Owusu-Ankomah said the sudden influx of some refugees allegedly from Sudan to Accra without documentation was a source of worry to many Ghanaians and the security agencies must work hard to avert another incident.

The minister also visited Noe, the Ivorian side of the border and said he was impressed about their computerisation and documentation process. Commandant Awede Hugues in charge of Noe said the cordial relationship between Ghana and Cote D'Ivoire enhanced easy movement of goods and services.

He said the computerisation made it easier for customs officials at all Ivorian borders to scan passports, Ivorian national identity cards and other travelling documents and also ascertain accurate data on each individual.

Mr Patrick M. Korley, Sector Commander of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) in charge at the Elubo border, said lack of office and residential accommodation was hampering their activities while the bridge that spans River Tano and links Ghana to Cote D'Ivoire needs urgent rehabilitation. He said the numerous unapproved routes along the border were a major source of worry to security personnel at the border.

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