Mobilizing actions to prevent violent extremism
January 16, 2023
“I have benefited so much from the training on prevention of violence extremism. I am so passionate about advocating for peace in my community. From here, I am going to impact the knowledge I have gained to all my community members to help achieve a violent free society”, noted Ayaabila Ramatu member of the agro-business association in the Garu District in the Upper East Region of Ghana.
Violent extremism is increasingly becoming a global issue that affects lives, livelihoods and properties of various individuals. The increasing complexity due to violence has strengthened efforts from various levels to resolve and adopt appropriate preventive strategies to safeguard the peace and security of the country. Prevention of Violent Extremism (PVE) has been a concern of many stakeholders including the grassroot level.
Improved capacity to prevent violence has been identified to be critical in efforts towards protecting Ghana’s peace. As a result, the Upper East Regional Peace Council with funding from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), organised a training of trainers programme to build the capacity of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises in the Garu and Tempane districts in the Upper East Region of Ghana on early warning and response to prevent the threats of violent extremists in hotspots in Ghana.
The Preventing Violent Extremism training falls under UNDP’s integrated MSMEs support programme for six districts, seeking to support the Government of Ghana’s ambition to build peaceful and inclusive societies.
“After I have been trained on peacebuilding and preventing violent extremism, I realized that some of the strategies we learnt could be deployed to help solve the longstanding conflict between community members and leaders in the Garu Traditional area. This will lead us to replicating the engagements in the community’’, noted Naba Amadu Shaibu, Chief of Kpatia
The training is equipping women and youth with the relevant skills to identify early warning signals and report to the security agencies for immediate action and to also enable them be ambassadors for PVE in their communities and groups.
“The training has enhanced my knowledge on many ways violent extremists can use to cause havoc in the society. My key takeaway is that we all need to speak up or report anything we find very unusual in our societies. This will keep our security team on high alert on possible violence”, added Ayaabila.
Recognizing the threats and taking action to prevent radicalization towards violent extremism requires the collaboration and cooperation of all stakeholders at all levels. This can be achieved if decision-making and peacebuilding processes are inclusive enough to leave no one behind. Therefore, continuous engagement such as these among key actors will be a critical step in the fight for the maintenance of peace and stability in Ghana.
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