The Minister for the Interior, Mr. Ambrose Dery, yesterday inaugurated the governing boards of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) and the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) with the assurance of government's commitment to retool agencies under the ministry.
According to him, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo had embarked on a plan to retool all the agencies to enable them to carry out their mandate effectively.
“I want to assure you that President Akufo-Addo has embarked on a programme of retooling all agencies under the Ministry of the Interior,” he said.
The 14-member GIS Governing Council is chaired by the Managing Director of St Edwards Clinic, Dr. Edward Prempeh, while the 11-member GNFS governing board is chaired by the Member of Parliament for Asante-Akim Central, Mr. Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi.
Mr. Dery took the members through the oaths of office and secrecy.
For the GIS, the other members are Mr. Peter R. Zwennes, Mr. Jabaah John Bennam, Mr. Alfred Tuah Yeboah, Mr. Louis Obeng, Mr. Moses K. Gyamfi, Dr. Millicent DeGraft-Johnson, Mrs. Hagar Dery, Mr. Samuel Ayer, Mr. Aziz Futa and Senior Inspector Michael Odame.
Sworn in to serve on the GNFS board are the Chief Fire Officer, Mr. Edwin Ekow Blankson, Mrs. Florence Pul, Mr. Kizito Ballans, Rosby Kome Mensah, Mr. Thomas Atteh Donkor, Ms. Evelyn Keelson, Mr. Kwesi Assan-Brew, Mr. Mark Brako-Appiah, Mr. Emmanuel Agyei Anhwere and Ms. Faustina Ayereke.
During the inauguration of the GIS board, the minister said a number of initiatives had been undertaken by the government to motivate and enhance the operations of the GIS and cited the promotion of over 3,000 officers since 2017 to various ranks as an example.
Moreover, he said, there was also the need to recruit more personnel and expand facilities at the Assin Fosu training facility in the Central Region, which were also being taken advantage of by members of the other sister security agencies for training.
Beyond that, he said, there had been training for officers at the Counter-Terrorism School at Huhunya, near Dahwenya, stressing that through that training, personnel had been able to support some operations jointly carried out by other security agencies like the army and the police.
Mr. Dery mentioned one of those operations as Operation Calm Life.
“This shows clearly that immigration service has matured into a proper security agency. I wish to assure the commitment of the President and the government to make sure that the GIS is built into a world-class security service, competent to handle security,” he said.
At the inauguration of the GNFS board, Mr. Dery charged the members to bring their rich expertise to bear so as to enhance the operation of the service.
According to him, the members had what it took to perform their functions on the board.
He underscored the need for the GNFS to be proactive in what it does rather than be reactive in order to help avoid fire outbreaks, adding that “we are all witnesses to the many fires that have occurred all over the country.”
Mr. Dery charged the members to live up to the confidence reposed in them by the President and pledged the commitment of the ministry to work with them and also provide the needed support.
He gave an assurance that the government would provide more fire engines and equipment to augment what the GNFS had.
Both Dr. Prempeh and Mr. Anyimadu-Antwi thanked the President for the honour done them on their appointments to the boards as it gave them the opportunity to serve the country.
They, among other things, said they would work closely with the ministry to uplift the image of their respective organisations.