June 5, 2022
LEAKAGE OF CLASSIFIED NATIONAL SECURITY INFORMATION
The Institute for Intelligence and Strategic Security (IISS) notes with grave concern recent developments relating to leakage of classified intelligence and national security information into the public domain and calls for thorough investigation into the phenomenon
2. The most recent of this unauthorized disclosure of classified material is the leakage of the National Security Co-ordinator’s intelligence on movement of suspicious elements in border areas in the North-East and Upper East regions.
3. The intelligence signal dated 01/06/2022 to the Chief of Defence Staff and Inspector General of Police meant to ensure security operatives monitor and crack down on criminal elements infiltrating Ghanaian territory leaked into the public domain hours after it was disseminated, calling to question security of classified information and state secrets, especially at a time the nation is on high alert following expansionist drive of violent extremist organizations in the Sahel.
4. It is worthy of note that this particular incident adds to other similar leaks in recent past including the May 12, 2022 memo of the National Security Co-ordinator to religious organizations, 2021 June 15 Police Headquarters Wireless Message on suspected infiltration of armed elements into Upper East just to mention a few.
5. IISS considers this growing trend as not only militating the fight against threat of violent extremism and other forms of threats, but a demonstration of a seeming weakness in our national security intelligence system that presents potential information security vulnerability facilitating access to sensitive security information by our adversaries.
6. The Institute is by this statement calling on the Ministry of National Security to take urgent steps to launch full investigations into these security breaches and prosecute persons found culpable pursuant to applicable laws governing intelligence operations.
7. IISS takes the opportunity to advice citizens about their patriotic responsibility to protect sensitive national security information from unauthorized disclosure which undermines our national security.
8. The attention of all security operatives and persons with access to classified security information and intelligence is drawn to Section 45 of the Security and Intelligence Agencies Act 2020 (Act 1030) relating to unauthorized disclosure of information and identity.
Subsection 1: “Subject to the Constitution and to section 43, a person shall not disclose any information obtained by that person or to which that person had access in the performance of functions under this Act or to which that person had access in the administration or enforcement of this Act and from which there can be inferred the identity of
- any other person who is or was a confidential source of information or assistance to the intelligence agency, or
- a person who is or was an employee engaged in intelligence activities of the intelligence agencies.
(2) A person who contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a term of imprisonment of not less than five years and not more than ten years.
9. IISS also re-iterates its continuous call for a review of the recruitment regime that facilitates the entry of undesirable persons into the security and intelligence services, whose employment in these sensitive employment poses threat to national security.
10. The Ministry of National Security and the National Intelligence Services should ensure that persons seeking employment into sensitive establishments are subjected to comprehensive vetting and background checks, while undertaking continuous vetting of employees to rid the security system of undesirable elements.
11. The Institute for Intelligence and Strategic Security remains committed to upholding high ethical and professional standards in the intelligence and national security domain. As an independent professional, non-partisan non-governmental organization dedicated to promoting professionalism and professionalization within the field of intelligence and national security, IISS since its establishment continues to build capacity of security operatives and corporate organizations in intelligence disciplines for the advancement of our national security and defence of the sovereignty and integrity of the Republic of Ghana.
12. IISS seeks to proactively play a leading role in advancing the course of professionalizing the practice of intelligence and national security, with the objective of building confidence and recognized standards of competence in the conduct of national security intelligence.
13. The Institute seeks to champion the agenda of building highly skilled and trained national security and intelligence professionals for the public good.
14. The Institute does not engage in espionage, covert, clandestine or subversive activity or any intelligence operation in support of any person or organization, both within or outside Ghana in furtherance of the unlawful political objective or other motivation of that person or organization, except research, training and advocacy. The Institute however undertakes Open-Source (OSINT) intelligence research and analysis on issues of national security interest and alerts relevant agencies on threats to peace, security and stability of our beloved country.
Issued in Accra: 05/06/2022
Nana Dr. Sadiq Adu-Twum