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President Akufo-Addo says Ghana remains vigilant on extremist threat

 President Akufo-Addo condemns terror plot

ACCRA, Ghana--The president of Ghana, H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, on Wednesday pledged to intensify security and intelligence operations after an inquiry into a possible extremist plot in the West African national capital, Accra.

Globe Afrique has learned that three suspects were on Tuesday accused of possessing explosives after alleged hand grenades were discovered in Accra’s Odorkor.

David Asante-Apeatu, the country’s inspector general of police, said officers have been looking for “potential allies” of the trio “inside and outside the country”.

During a news conference, President Akufo-Addo said the extremist threat was “a reality for all of us” and “Ghana, in principle, cannot be exempt as a potential target”.

Unlike neighboring Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso, which were both attacked by Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb in January and March 2016, leaving scores dead, Ghana has so far never been attacked by extremists.

The distinguished and reputable Ghanaian leader defined Ghana’s approach to the jihadist threat in West Africa as “so far, so good” but he warned: “We can never, ever let our guard down.”

Adding, this week’s arrests showed “a level of alertness that will enable (the police) to nip some of these things in the bud”, he said.

The Ghanaian leader urged the country security services to increase its capacity for intelligence gathering and sharing while dealing with the causes of radicalization.

“But I think that Ghana is stable, Ghana is secure, Ghana is safe and I’m certainly going to do everything I can to make sure that that reality in Ghana continues,” he added.

Three suspects who are all foreign nationals and Muslims have been identified as Ismaila Ali Musah, Abdul Karim Yakubu, and Osman Hassan.  Reports say they have been remanded in custody by a city court to reappear on January 30.

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Paul Stevens

Paul Stevens is a researcher, media issues analyst and senior contributor with Globe Afrique.

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