Director of Faculty of Academic Affairs & Research at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre, Prof. Emmanuel Kwesi Aning, said the United States of America Embassy in Ghana owes Ghanaians an apology for a security alert the Embassy issued to its citizens in Ghana over what it described as “unsubstantiated claims”.
The security alert issued on March 9, 2020 warned American nationals in Ghana against travelling to the Northern parts of the country.
“The U.S. Embassy in Accra, Ghana, has received unsubstantiated information that U.S. citizens may be targeted for kidnapping for ransom in northern Ghana, to include the Upper East Region and the Upper West Region. U.S. citizens traveling in Ghana should exercise caution while visiting border areas, in particular the northern border, and be sure to stay abreast of any Security Alerts affecting those areas. Due to concerns over criminal activity in remote areas, travel of U.S. government personnel to the northern and northwestern border is currently limited”, the alert reads.
But Prof. Aning is opposed to the approach adopted by the Embassy saying it unduly damages the reputational image of Ghana. He wants the Government of Ghana to take on the matter.
“I think it is unfair and the Foreign Ministry must protest. This information is unfair, it’s unwarranted and it needs a much more solid basis”, he said in an interview withTV3’s Crosby Annan.
“If they themselves have used the word “unsubstantiated”, then I think they owe the government of Ghana an apology and I’ll be terribly disappointed if the ambassador or the deputy ambassador has not called on the Foreign Ministry”, he added.
According to Prof. Anning, the security advisory alert should be treated with contempt.
“In my line of work, unsubstantiated facts are rubbish and I think we should treat it as the rubbish that it is”, he said.