Following the successful training for Dog Handlers at the National Dog Academy (NDA) in Ghana last year, CRIMJUST provided a two week Specialized Operational Mentoring for Drug Detection Dog Handlers – Drug/Currency Detection. The training was provided upon request from the Executive Secretary of Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) of Ghana and took place between 8 and 17 May 2017.
The Specialized Operational Mentoring is aimed at equipping law enforcement agencies, whose mandate covers the selected areas, with the requisite skills to detect drugs and currencies with the use of the trained dogs. Officers were trained and prepared to undertake a real time operation during this period, leading to the arrest and seizure of illicit substances.
The forty-five participants selected for the training were from NACOB, the Ghana Police Service/Criminal Investigations Department, the Ghana Revenue Authority and the Ghana Immigration Service. The training, delivered by two experts from the Spanish National Police, was carried out in various areas of the Kotoka International Airport and at the Aflao and Kpoglo borders, where searches were conducted on passengers, luggage and vehicles at the crossing points.
The operation was a pilot initiative, organized with preventive and visibility objectives undertaken to deter drug dealers/traffickers and enhance effective seizures. The Togolese national authorities sent officials from the Drug Law Enforcement Agencies to the border to observe the activities and discuss possible joint cross-border actions. The evaluation of the training noted an overall satisfaction of the participants, and they positively rated the facilitation and moderation of the various activities, stating that the new skills acquired would benefit their future professional activities.
Drawing on support from the Ministry of Interior of Ghana, the European Union Delegation in Ghana, and the Spanish Ambassador in Ghana, the implementation of this activity complemented other initiatives in the realm of the European Union Cocaine Route Programme, such as AIRCOP.