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STAR Ghana’s CSSF Project records major gains as Ministries, Regional Coordinating Councils and MMDAs mainstream parts of the roadmap for security and stability intervention

STAR-Ghana Foundation (SGF) through its Conflict, Security and Stability Fund (CSSF) under the Regional Response Programme has developed a roadmap for coordinating advocacy on peace, security and stability in the regions of the north in Ghana.

The one-year project was piloted and implemented in the five regions in the north with the objective of contributing to address the underlying causes of conflict, insecurity and underdevelopment in Northern Ghana. Among other achievements, the project has significantly influenced operational development plans of six ministries including the National Security Ministry, 5 Regional Coordinating Councils and ten MMDAs.  

Conflict and insecurity in the northern part of Ghana has been a major challenge for governments for decades. Pockets of provocations and reprisals have become common place, characterized by gun violence and killing of women and children in avoidable crossfires.

 For residents, embracing security patrols by detachments of combined Police and Military personnel cannot be negotiated. The situation in the five regions of the North has necessitated the imposition of curfews by government as a way of mitigating tensions while law enforcement agencies clamp down on perpetrators.

Addressing a gathering at a reflections workshop on the CSSF project, Executive Director of STAR Ghana Foundation, Alhaji Ibrahim-Tanko Amidu, said the aim of the project was to develop a roadmap for coordinated advocacy on peace, security, and stability in the Northern, Northeast, Savannah, Upper East and Upper West Regions.

He noted that the project implemented by STAR Ghana Foundation was being funded by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and had contributed to addressing the underlying causes of conflict, insecurity, and underdevelopment in the area. Mr Amidu said the project implemented in partnership with the Northern Development Authority (NDA) and the Northern Development Forum (NDF) was able to convene a series of regional stakeholders’ dialogue meetings to offer them space to reflect on measures to put in place to fight against conflict in the area.

Mrs Eunice Agbenyadzi, Programmes Manager of STAR Ghana Foundation spoke about some of the achievements of the CSSF project saying it had catalysed and coordinated a lot of efforts to address the underlying causes of conflict and insecurity in the area as part of a broad roadmap. She said the roadmap was an output of the regional and national dialogue, which had laid the foundation for more holistic and inclusive actions to identify conflict which had offered recommendations for coordinated and complementary actions by state and state actors.

Mr Aaron Atimpe, Project Manager for CSSF at STAR Ghana Foundation said the project had also explored opportunities for sustaining peace and proposed strategies for addressing the drivers of conflicts and insecurities in the northern sector of the country. He added that it had adopted an integrated approach to link initiatives at the community levels, focusing on salient local issues and piloting innovative local partnerships with strategic national level engagements to influence policy and practice in the areas of peace, security, and development. Mr Abubakar George, Project Coordinator for Fistrad Organization, and a stakeholder of CSSF project said the project had provided a standard mechanism to resolve conflicts between Fulani herders and community members. He appealed for an extension of the project to enable them to consolidate the modest gains made so far in the area.

Mr Peter Asaal, Executive Director of Benum Wusa Debut Agency indicated that as part of the project implementation achievement, there was security agency and community engagements in the pilot communities to increase awareness on security issues and threats. He said it had strengthened relationships between security agencies and community members and added that border management issues were identified, and awareness created on the functions of the security agencies.