As part of a groundbreaking international mutual aid agreement the UK government has pledged to help train 16,000 Ghanain police, immigration, prison, fire and ambulance officers ahead of the country's general elections in December.

Ghana's Minister for Interior, William Kwasi Aboah, launched "The Role of Law Enforcement Agencies in Ensuring Peace and Security During the 2012 General Elections" at a function held at the Police Headquarters in Accra and said his government would "support security officers to deal severely with miscreants who may decide to mar the electoral process according to the law".

He added that he was grateful to the UK government for the sponsorship, stressing that "political violence in whatever shape or form have left imprint of devastation, fatalities, untold hardships and stagnation of economic development in countries which have experienced it."

The UK High Commissioner to Ghana, Peter Jones said even though the UK had previously offered support in several sectors like the EC and the Judiciary, nothing is so important than ensuring public health and safety.

"Ghana has earned for itself an enviable reputation as a beacon of democratic best practices. The election in 2012 offers another chance for Ghana to show the rest of the world what it can do," he said.

Key to the training will be ensuring officers from all Emergency Services understand the balance between the maintenance of law and good order and non-interference with the rights of voters.

Countrywide awareness training for all Services will begin in Wa, the Upper West Regional capital in the Autumn.

Posted 06/09/2012 by richard.hook@pavpub.com