The two-week training dubbed: “Explosives Hazards Awareness Training (EHAT) of Trainers,” drew participants from Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Cameron, Egypt, Benin, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Burkina Faso and Gambia.
Held at the Ghana Police Command and Staff College, Winneba in the Central Region, the training programme, the first of its kind, was sponsored by the British Government, the African Union, and the Ghana Police Service (GPS).
Facilitators drawn from Ghana, Britain and Zambia, trained students to deal with explosive hazards, which has lately become rampant.
Addressing the closing session of the programme, Commissioner of Police (COP) Mr Christian Tetteh Yohunu, Director-General of Administration, GPS, said for law enforcing officers whose operational assignments went beyond their individual national boundaries to international peace-keeping operations, the EHAT course was a useful tool in bridging their knowledge gap in identifying threats, proper management of explosives, to encountering activities of rogue non-state armed fighters.
“In our own sub-region, political activities and festive periods are prime occasions when miscreants resort to the use of explosives to kill and maim members of the vulnerable civilian public, cause massive destructions to public and private property, lives and for territorial controls,” he said.
COP Yohunu hinted that Specialised Professional Development courses, such as the EHAT, would be introduced at the College in future to enrich the knowledge of officers in key institutions including the National Intelligence Bureau, the Economic and Organised Crime Office, the Ghana Immigration Service, the Ghana National Service, other security services, financial institutions, among others.
Chief Superintendent of Police Dr Dinam Zoiku, Commandant of the College said the session retooled students with the needed knowledge, resources and techniques to combat the upsurge in the use of improvised explosive devices, which easily fell in the hands of criminals and bandits, who used them maim, kill or cause massive destruction to both private and public property.
The second phase of the a-three-phased programme would commence in a fortnight.
Mr Steve O’Donoghoe, Police Advisor, British Peace Support Team (BPST), Africa, said the training was timely as it would develop the capacity of police personnel to confront the threats of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED).
Camal Al Saeed Almal, an Egyptian course participant and the overall best was grateful to the organisers for the opportunity given to him and his colleagues to participate in the programme, and pledged to share the knowledge gained.
Certificates were presented to participants and special awards to the overall best and also some course facilitators.