President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said the government will establish a permanent military base in the Bawku municipality in the Upper East Region.
He said considering the proximity of the municipality to the Ghana-Burkina Faso border, the area “is an obvious potential target for murderers and criminals who may want to destabilise and terrorise the lives of the people”.
The President said the government had already initiated some measures to deal with the issue of insecurity and explained that the setting up of the military base was one of the many ongoing interventions to address the situation in the country.
Another intervention was strengthening the Police Service with significant recruitment of personnel since 2017, as well as the provision of more logistics to enhance security and policing in the country, he said.
President Akufo-Addo said this when he called on the Paramount Chief of the Bawku Traditional Area, Naba Asigri Abugrago Azoka II, at his palace in Bawku yesterday as part of his two-day official visit to the region.
He commended the Bawku Naba for collaborating with the Bawku Inter-Ethnic Peace Committee and pledged to grant the request by the chief to provide the committee with a means of transport to facilitate its work, adding: “We have to do everything possible to maintain the peace and security of this area.”
On the government’s flagship programmes, the President described the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) initiative as successful, saying that even though last year more than 47,000 farmers in the region were targeted to benefit from the PFJ, at least about 66,000 eventually received support.
He said the programme was still unfolding, adding that the government was constructing six warehouses in the area which were at various stages of completion.
President Akufo-Addo further said 40 dams had been built under the One-village, One-dam policy to support farmers in their activities.
And under the One-district, One-factory policy, he said, the government would soon establish a Guinea fowl processing factory in Bawku to create jobs for the youth.
He commended the Bawku Naba for his support to halt the smuggling of fertiliser from Ghana to neighbouring countries.
On the rehabilitation of the Bolgatanga-Bawku-Pulmakom road, President Akufo-Addo said work was 80 per cent complete and gave an assurance that it would soon be completed, adding that there would be a by-pass on the Bolgatanga-Bawku-Pulmakom highway and other access roads to Bawku.
He said as part of the government’s agenda to construct 111 hospitals, some of the projects would be in the Bawku municipality.
The Bawku Naba expressed concern over the security situation in the area following terrorist activities in neighbouring Burkina Faso and appealed to the President to help prevent a spillage of such activities into the area.
He expressed appreciation to the government for the implementation of the various interventions, including the roll-out of the free senior high school policy and the construction of major bridges at Kulungugu and Tamne.
Naba Azoka entreated the government to help complete the Eastern corridor road and the Tamne dam project and also ensure the establishment of a satellite campus of the C.K.Tedam University of Technology and Applied Sciences at the Manga Research Centre to focus on agriculture, especially livestock production.
The President was accompanied on the tour by the Minister of Defence, Mr Dominic Nitiwul; the Minister of the Interior, Mr Ambrose Dery; the Upper East Regional Minister, Mr Stephen Yakubu, among other government functionaries.