Saturday, 7 January 2017

Let Us Quickly Bring Ghana's National Security Apparatus Into The High-Tech Age

A rather unfortunate incident occured on Thursday, 5th January, 2017, which has forced one to comment on the protection of our new leaders - instead of writing about President Akufo-Addo's inspiring and uplifting speech on his assumption of power:  after being sworn into office as Ghana's new leader at the Independence Square, today.

Amazingly, on his last day as Ghana's leader, former President Mahama's security cordon was breached, in the most egregious of fashions. It is still mystifying and hard to comprehend why it occurred.

Incredibly,  a woman who was clearly in an  emotional state, was able to hold on to the back of the attire President Mahama (as he then was) was wearing -  momentarily preventing him from entering his official vehicle as he prepared to leave the grounds of Parliament, after delivering his last state of the nation address.

No leader of our country must ever be made to suffer such an indignity in an age of terrorism - and those in charge of President Akufo-Addo's personal security must make sure that the security cordon around him is never breached during his tenure.

The question is: What would have happened if it had turned out that that woman who succeeded in holding on momentarily to the back of the attire President  Mahama was wearing,  had been a suicide bomber wearing a bomb-laden  belt around her? It just doesn't bear thinking.

One hopes that that particular incident will serve as an important lesson to all those who will be in charge of the security of our nation's new leaders - and  those tasked  specifically to ensure the safety of ordinary Ghanaians and their Republic over  the next four years.

The Hon. Kan-Dapaah, who apparently will be the minister in charge of national security in the new Akufo-Addo administration, must undertake a trip to Airbus Defence and Space's European headquarters at Toulouse, in France, as soon as practicable, to take a look at the company's pseudo-satellite, the Zephyr.

If Ghana places an order for, and purchases 4 Zephyrs, it will immediately improve the surveillance capabilities of our security agencies - giving them  access to real-time high resolution video and still photographs of all areas of interest to them, security wise, on the Ghanaian landmass.

That will give our country the ability to better police its land borders; track down highway robbers and other criminals; as well as monitor its entire road network in real time, for example. Ditto monitor its coastline and remaining forests.

An added bonus is that it will provide secure broadband for our security agencies too.

That will make it possible for all the personnel of our security agencies to wear body-cameras, have dashboard cameras in all their vehicles and enable them tap into state agency databases, whiles on the move and  when temporarily stationary away from their various unit HQs.

It will also stop bribe-taking and  bad behaviour in our security agencies - closing a potential avenue for terrorist groups to use in infiltrating our country to create sleeper cells: corrupting security personnel with cash.

Let us quickly bring our country's national security apparatus into the high-tech age. Now. Not tomorrow.  It is said that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance - and in an age of global terrorism, Ghanaians surely still want to remain a free people, regardless, do we not?

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