President Akufo-Addo charges Commission to ensure proper demarcation of Ghana’s boundaries

The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged the Ghana Boundary Commission to ensure an ‘immediately and proper’ demarcation of the country’s land and maritime boundaries, as the current state of Ghana’s boundary demarcations exposes the country to economic and security dangers.

The president made this call when he inaugurated the reconstituted, Ghana Boundary Commission, headed by the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor.

According to the president, the current markings of Ghana’s land and maritime boundaries posed a great challenge to the country and could be the grounds for conflict between the country and its neighbours.

“A careful analysis of our borders show numerous recorded cases of destruction of the boundary markings of demarcated land and maritime borders. This situation exposes us to security, economic and other developmental implications, including setting the tone for potential conflict with neighbouring countries,” he said.

“It is therefore of urgent need to find more sustainable and vigorous means of managing our land and maritime boundaries as well airspace,” he added.

President Akufo-Addo laid particular emphasis on “demarcation, documentation and protection of the country’s borders as well as strict adherence to the statutory international laws to safeguard the sovereignty and interest of our country.

He then enumerated measures being implemented by the government to secure Ghana’s territorial sovereignty, noting that since the establishment of the Commission in July, it has facilitated boundary negotiations in Togo which had been pending since 2017.

“This has led to rebirth of its Togolese equivalent and led to a roadmap for the amicable resolution to the negotiation before the end of this year,” the president remarked.

He also indicated that there is an ongoing effort to settle the issue with Burkina Faso in the Kassena-Nakana West and Bawku Districts, both in the Upper East Region.

He noted that the presence of rich mineral resources along the country’s borders made it imperative that “we conclude these matters once and for all and forestall any potential needless conflict.”

President Akufo-Addo (middle) in a group photograph with the reconstituted Ghana Boundary Commission

For his part, the Chairman of the Commission, Mr Jinapor, He said the Commission would collaborate with relevant stakeholders and adopt internationally-recognised best practices to safeguard Ghana’s territorial integrity.

“The work of the Boundaries Commission is consequential to the peace and security of our nation, as it borders on the territorial integrity of our country. We are aware of the devastating impact of unresolved border disputes on states and their people.

The Bakasi Peninsular conflict, the renewed conflict between Israel and Palestine and the crisis between Sudan and South Sudan over oil rich boundaries are just a few of the examples,” the Minister stated.

“We therefore do not take this responsibility lightly. The implications of our actions or inactions on the security of the nation are grace, and we’ll do our best to ensure that we safeguard through peaceful international means the territorial integrity of Ghana,” he said.

The Commission is made up of the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources (Chair), the National Coordinator of the Ghana Boundary Commission, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Minister for Justice, Minister for Defence, Minister for Energy, the Transport Minister.

There is also a representative of the Local Government Ministry, National Security Council, Ghana Revenue Authority, Ghana Institute of Surveyors, Ghana Institute of Geoscientists and a representative of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture on the Commission.

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