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Sierra Leone is West Africa’s safest country, not Ghana

Claim: Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has described his country as the “safest in West Africa.”

Verdict: False. Data released by the Global Peace Index (GPI) showed Ghana is the second safest country in West Africa after Sierra Leone. With a score of 1.792, Sierra Leone displaced Ghana, which scored 1.799, at the top of the 2023 GPI. The third safest country in West Africa is Senegal, with a score of 1.827, GPI data has shown.

Full Text

Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has encouraged global leaders to partner with African governments to address the issue of poverty, saying a prosperous Africa would be suitable for every nation.

Speaking at the annual Africa Day event held in Vienna, Austria, on Jan. 30, 2024, the Ghanaian leader said:

“The problems that face the world are more likely to be quickly resolved when we are all prosperous than when half the world is immersed in poverty.”

Canvassing investors for his country, President Akufo-Addo said: “Ghana is a haven of peace, security, and stability. Indeed, the safest country in West Africa.” 

See the video shared on X (formerly Twitter) by Accra-based UTV, starting from minutes 0.01 to 0.12 here.

Data available on X showed the video shared on Feb. 1, 2024, has been viewed 35,754 times, shared 58 times, liked 302 times, and received 123 comments.

DUBAWA decided to probe the claim as part of its campaign against disinformation and misinformation in the West African country.

Verification

Data from the Global Peace Index 2023 has revealed that Ghana is not the “safest” country in West Africa as of 2023. See reports from the media in Ghana here and here.

With a score of 1.792, the data has disclosed that Sierra Leone displaced Ghana at the top of the West African chart in the 2023 GPI. 

GPI data reveals that Ghana scored 1.799 in the 2023 index compared to the score of 1.759 recorded in the 2022 index.

The third safest country in West Africa is Senegal, with a score of 1.827. See pages 8 and 9 of the Global Peace Index 2023.

A screenshot of the Global Peace Index 2023

With a score of 1.546, Mauritius is the most peaceful and safest country in Africa, placing 23rd globally, the GPI 2023 has revealed. The East African nation was followed by the Southern African country, Botswana, which recorded a score of 1.762 and was 42nd globally.

The third most peaceful country in Africa is Sierra Leone, which placed 47 globally, followed by Ghana, which ranked 51st globally with a score of 1.799. See pages 8 and 9 of the Global Peace Index 2023.

Senegal ranked 52nd globally with a score of 1.827, ranking the third most peaceful country in West Africa. See pages 8 and 9 of the Global Peace Index 2023.

A screenshot of the Global Peace Index 2023

Conclusion

Ghana is not the safest country in West Africa, as claimed by President Nana Akufo-Addo. The Global Peace Index 2023 has shown that Sierra Leone, with a score of 1.792, is the safest and most peaceful country in West Africa. Ghana is the second.

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