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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Ghana Now Less Peaceful - Report

The executive Director of the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) Dr. Emmanuel Bombande is blaming chieftaincy and the Fulani communal violence for Ghana’s dip in the global peace index.

The West African country was ranked 50 in the latest ranking released Tuesday, up from the 42 position it occupied last year.

The research published by the Institute for Economics and Peace, a global non-profit research organization is, to among other things, create the paradigm that peace is a pre-requisite for the survival of humanity.

According to the 2012 report, the world has experienced relative peace compared to previous years, but the same cannot be said about Ghana. Ghana’s 50 position in the 2012 edition is said to be the worst after the 2008 edition when the country was ranked 52.

The country enjoyed relative peace in the subsequent years and was ranked 42 last year. It is not immediately clear if the recent violence in parts of the country which claimed some 14 lives accounted for the sharp increase.

A mediator and peace broker with WANEP, Dr Bambande described the new ranking as fair and a true representation of the situation in the country. He told Joy News for Ghana to be ranked 50 out of 158 countries, better than the US which is ranked 88, it must be doing fairly well in its peace efforts but cannot be complacent.

He said the country must take into account the new emerging threats and challenges and how to build a “national mediating capacity to respond to those challenges”.

In addition to the communal violence in parts of the country, Dr Bombande said new indicators introduced, such as corruption and transparency levels may also account for the rise in Ghana’s ranking. “We did not perform very well in the transparency international corruption index. Because it is now one of the indicators we could be doing well on other levels and be drawn back because of new indicators that have been added,” he said.

The head of Sociology at the Cape Coast University Prof Dominic Agyeman debunked assertion that Ghana is a peaceful country. He said looking at what is happening in Ghana in recent times it is quite untrue to say Ghanaians are peaceful people.

Both men suggested that government and security forces must look out for early warning signals and douse potential flames than to wait for the conflict to break out before resolving them.


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