The Research and Defence Cooperation Directorate was established in 2012 to bridge the knowledge gap in the Ministry in addressing defence cooperation matters including information gathering, intelligence sharing, training and peace support operations among others. The work of the Directorate also extends to facilitating and initiating research in defence, peace and security matters as well as security related matters involving Ghana, the sub-region and international bodies such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and African Union (AU).
In performing these tasks the Directorate coordinates and collates information derived from Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs), Defence Cooperation Agreements and International Protocols among others. Additionally, the Directorate is responsible for the Departmental Library where relevant research materials are made available to assist staff in the performance of their duties. The Directorate collaborates with its key stakeholders and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration to undertake and participate in a number of activities.
In 2017, it participated in the Main Meetings for Permanent Joint Commissions for Cooperation (PJCC) between Ghana – Togo in Accra, Ghana – Benin in Cotonou and Ghana – South Africa in Ghana. By the Third Quarter of 2018, the Directorate had participated in the Preparatory meetings between Ghana-Senegal, Ghana-Zambia, Ghana- Angola and Ghana – Uganda all held in Ghana.
Again, the Research and Defence Cooperation Division involved itself actively in the planning, celebration and observation of ECOWAS Day, AU Day, and the United Nations Peace-Keepers Day successfully.
The Directorate has been collaborating with the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and other Stakeholders from the Mining and Energy Sector to draft and review Ghana’s National Action Plan for the implementation of the Voluntary Principles on Security (VPS). This is to establish a baseline of human rights in relation to security in the extractive sector.
For its projections and way forward, the Research and Defence Cooperation Directorate would like to engage in the following activities within the year:-
- Strengthen alliance with sub-regional countries and international partnerships by participating in four (4) PJCC’s meetings within and outside Ghana as well as harmonise Defence conventions and protocols for effective security collaboration;
- Expand and modernize the Ministry’s ICT Infrastructure;
- To create a learning environment, revamp the library to support reading and research.
- Liaise with the Editorial Board to produce the Minister “The Defender” at least twice by the end of the year;
- Collaborate with the Principal General Staff Officer’s office to undertake:-
- Annual Meet-The-Press Series at the Ministry of Information’
- Maritime Security Meeting
The challenge envisaged is the possibility of all scheduled PJCC Meetings not coming off as planned by all parties, due to budgetary constraints.
In conclusion, the Research and Defence Cooperation Directorate makes available a learning environment to improve the decision making process in the Ministry.