Ghana‘s border security agencies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on integrated border management.
The agreement between the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Ghana Maritime Authority, Ghana Immigration Service, and the Ghana Police Service, would among others, address border challenges and facilitate smooth movement of goods and services at the ports.
The National Coordinator of the Security Governance Initiative (SGI) and facilitator of the agreement, Dickson Osei Bonsu, says the initiative would ensure a free flow of information among the participating agencies.
“They need a reference document that says that by these articles, by these instruments you are enabled to do A, B, C, D; now in that MoU that they signed, there are certain particulars,” he said.
Mr Osei Bonsu added, “There’s the need to create structures for air, land and sea border security both at the port level, at the regional level and at the national level so that we can holistically plan the nature of Ghanaian borders”
According to the SGI, the agreement also provides pace for certain joint activities that must be taken in the nature of training, equipment sharing, and infrastructure sharing, among others.
Representatives from all the agencies have pledged their commitment to adhere to the terms and conditions spelt out in the document.
The MoU which was supervised by the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Mike Oquaye, forms part of the Ghana-USA Security Governance Initiative (SGI) to harness best practices in border security.
The first of its kind coordinated approach by border agencies both local and international is an affirmation of the World Customs Organization's Smart borders initiative.
In 2016, the Government of Ghana (GoG) signed the Security Governance Initiative (SGI) charter to advance Ghana’s capacity to manage threats in the areas of the maritime, border, cybersecurity among others.
SGI partner countries such as Kenya, Nigeria, Niger, Tunisia, Mali and other countries in Africa also have expressed similar interests in tandem with requirements under various ECOWAS and African Union protocols.