View Vacancy - Political Officer - Northern Ghana EO (42/22 ACC)

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer.  We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.
Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (Policy & Political roles)

Main purpose of job:

BHC Accra is a large post, delivering high impact and complex policy, programmes and campaigns on the full breadth of the Africa Strategy. Ghana is a priority country for the UK and we are working across a wide array of development, diplomatic, environmental, security and other areas and linkages.

All staff embody the new Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office’s approach to cross-departmental ways of working and the High Commission aims to be a highly-inclusive place to work, celebrating a workforce with both diversity of thought and background. To help achieve this the British High Commission takes a values-based approach to leadership and people management, and has a zero-tolerance for bullying and harassment. Our local values are Respect; Openness; and Honesty & Integrity.

The FCDO is increasing its focus on Northern Ghana (the five northernmost regions of Ghana) across the spectrum of diplomacy, development, and security. This work needs to be informed by a robust and detailed understanding of the political actors and political dynamics of the five Northern regions, and ongoing assessment of how the issues of Northern Ghana interact with national politics. This role will lead on political and contextual analysis, stakeholder engagement and political reporting on Northern Ghana. You will also support with the development of data driven products to ensure FCDO’s approaches in Northern Ghana are fully evidence based. The postholder will be housed in the Political and Governance Team (reporting to a Senior Political Officer) and will primarily work to the FCDO’s Northern Ghana Attaché, who is the FCDO’s senior diplomat working on Northern Ghana.

This is an exciting and growing portfolio which touches on the breadth of the UK government’s priorities and activities in Northern Ghana.  If you are looking for an opportunity to work in a high performing team, to develop your analytical skills and relationship building skills this is the job for you.

Roles and responsibilities:

In this role you will be responsible for:

  • Building relationships and influencing: This includes routine and specific engagement with Northern Ghana and national stakeholders. You will develop a robust and detailed understanding of the political actors and political dynamics of the five Northern regions, including how this interacts with national politics and how dynamics and issues change over time e.g., in the run up to the 2024 elections. You will deliver and regularly review the FCDO’s Northern Ghana stakeholder mapping and influencing strategy, and ensure it is being used to guide FCDO’s work and drive forward FCDO’s objectives in Northern Ghana.
  • Strategic and effective engagement: You will advise the Northern Ghana Attaché, the Political Counsellor, and the High Commissioner on who they should meet in Northern Ghana and how to approach meetings. A good knowledge of the protocol and procedures for meeting traditional leaders and chiefs, and an understanding of the dynamics between different Chiefs will enable you to be successful in this position. Furthermore, you will need to ensure that FCDO’s engagements in Northern Ghana dock into FCDO’s broader diplomatic engagement with the Government of Ghana in Accra
  • Visits and briefings: A willingness to get out and about and to travel across the five regions of Northern Ghana is essential. You will regularly visit Northern Ghana and may be expected to spend extended time periods in the region.   At times you will undertake visits alone, and you will also accompany the Northern Ghana Attaché or other British Diplomats to Northern Ghana. This year a British Government Minister visited Tamale and there are more such visits in the pipeline. You will be a key player in arranging and supporting visits of Members of the British Government to Northern Ghana.
  • Reporting and analysis. You will provide regular political insight and reporting on day-to-day political developments in Northern Ghana. You will feed into strategic and analytical products to inform FCDO’s long-term thinking on the challenges and potential of Northern Ghana. Working with the FCDO’s statistician/results adviser, you will also support with the development of data driven products to ensure FCDO’s approaches in Northern Ghana are fully evidence based. You will be responsible for knowledge and information management, making sure that incoming FCDO officers are drawing on FCDO’s analysis and research to date, thereby ensuring maximum utility and good value for money of analytical products.
  • Programme Management. There may be opportunity to design and deliver new programmes in support of FCDO’s objectives in Northern Ghana. There will certainly be opportunity to develop a strong understanding of FCDO’s existing programmes, and to identify ways in which FCDO’s programmes and diplomatic efforts can be brought together to achieve maximum impact.
  • Communications: You will develop an understanding of how external communications can be used to advance FCDO objectives, working with the British High Commission’s Communications team.

Whilst this job is with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development office, the postholder will also have opportunities to learn about and lean in to the work of other UK Government Departments, such as the Department for International Trade, the Home Office (Ministry of Interior) and the Ministry of Defence.  

Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

Whilst the postholder will not formally line manage staff, they will work across the BHC with colleagues in the political, human development, upstream threats, climate and envrionment and economic team to ensure joined up approaches and informed analysis.

The postholder will also act as a mentor and support the development of National Service Personnel in the Northern Ghana team.

As part of the programme management opportunities which this role may provide there will be opportunity to manage funding streams, ensuring value for money and delivery of results for FCDO’s investments.

·       A degree in political science, law, history or similar.

·       A knowledge of Northern Ghana

·       Strong people skills and ability to build relationships with external and internal stakeholders

·       A minimum of one year office experience in a fast-paced working environment

·       Analytical and stakeholder mapping skills, and ability to use analytical insights to advise on building effective relationships and impactful engagements

·       Strong communication skills and ability to turn complex issues into insightful reporting and clear messages.

·       Strong organisational skills and ability to manage multiple work-strands to achieve deadlines.

·       Ability to plan ahead and anticipate problems, as well as being able to respond to urgent demands.

·       Experience of working with a Diplomatic Mission in Ghana is highly desirable.

Communicating and Influencing, Delivering at Pace, Seeing the Big Picture, Working Together
28 November 2022
Executive Officer (EO)
British High Commission
USD 837.21
1 February 2023

Learning and development opportunities: 

The British High Commission in Ghana takes learning and development seriously. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to develop many core and transferable skills through both formal and informal learning and development opportunities, including the full suite of HMG training courses and opportunities and the opportunity to work closely and shadow the High Comissioner and other senior members of staff. Members of staff are encouraged to make use of the learning and development opportunities that the office has to offer.

Working patterns:

This is a full time role, and is suitable for flexible working patterns, which should be discussed with your line manager.

When conducting field trips to Northern Ghana it may be necessary to work outside of core hours e.g. to attend an evening function.

  • All applicants must be legally able to work in Ghana with the correct visa/status or work permit.
  • The successful applicant will demonstrate that they meet the requirements under Ghanaian law to work in Ghana.
  • The British High Commission in Accra is an equal opportunities employer, dedicated to inclusivity, a diverse workforce and valuing difference.
  • Staff recruited locally by the British High Commission in Accra are subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local Ghanaian employment law.
  • Employees who are not liable to pay local income tax on their Mission salary may have their salaries reduced by the equivalent local income tax amount.
  • Information about the Civil Service Success Profiles can be found on this link:

  • Please note:  AA=A1, AO=A2, EO=B3, HEO=C4, SEO=C5.
  • Reference checking and security clearances will be conducted.
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This opportunity is closed to applications.