Roundabout in Nakpanduri neighbouring the region of Bawku
Staying local or expanding? The Bawku conflict could be exploited to spread terrorism and violent extremism. | Image: Hugues via flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Small Sparks, Big Flames: Why Resolving Local Conflicts Matters for Wider Security – The Case of Bawku Conflict in Ghana.

In the Sahel region, terrorist groups have exploited existing local conflicts to expand their activities and reach. In recent years, countries especially in coastal West Africa, have experienced terrorist activities in their territories. While Ghana has been resilient against terrorist attacks on its soil, the country continues to grapple with enduring ethnic conflicts, among them the Mamprusi and Kusai conflict in Bawku. In this blog post I argue that the Bawku conflict has persisted over an extensive period, and if left unresolved, could potentially open the door for extremist exploitation and infiltration, signaling a troubling extension of Sahel terrorist activities.


Internally displaced people in Shire, Tigray, April 2021
Internally displaced people in Shire, Tigray, April 2021. | Foto: User Rastakwere via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0 Deed

Potentially Vital AU Meeting on Tigray Leaves Communities of Interest in the Dark

Politics, violence, and secrecy have held back progress in post-war Tigray. This highlights not just the need to directly address security issues. It also emphasises the importance of improving transparency and giving marginalised stakeholders adequate information about current developments in the peace process.


Gitterstruktur in Silber und Gold
Coordination is important for a contemporary peace and security architecture | Photo: Susan Gold |

Enhancing Coordination within the African Peace and Security Architecture

Over the last two decades, African states have demonstrated increasing agency in addressing conflicts by using their capacities at the national, sub-regional and continental levels. This newfound quest for inward solutions was ushered in by the formation of the African Union (AU) in 2001 which was empowered with normative and institutional mechanisms to coordinate African preventive and reactive approaches to crisis situations. Although this African agency is a welcome development, significant gaps remain in terms of harmonising various capacities within the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA). Further harmonization requires a critical rethinking of APSA’s coordination mechanisms in peace and security.


erence view Nairobi 2018
First Conference on Sustainable Blue Economy in Nairobi, 2018 | Photo: IMO-UN | CC BY-2.0

Investment in the Blue Economy for enhanced Maritime Security

The conventional understanding of maritime security is one that is viewed as battle-ready and state-centric. However, a more sustainable approach would be investment in the maritime sector under the Blue Economy (BE) lens. This would bring the general public into the fold of manning the marine space and frontiers, it would be essential in increasing the scope of security factors to be addressed. The incorporation of BE into African Peace and Security Architecture is vital in order to give it the required prominence within the continent’s peace and security agenda.