Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Politics And Ethniciity In The Military


It is obvious from the three categories that only the three non-Akans from the Greater Accra, Northern and Volta Regions (all strongholds of the NDC) were retained on the list approved by the NPP Administration. Secondly, all the officers from Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Eastern Regions (strong holds of NPP) were deleted. Thirdly, all the replacements were Ewes, Fantis and Northerners whose regions voted massively for NDC in 2008. With these facts and revelations, General Nunoo-Mensah’s hypocrisy is exposed as far as politics and ethnicity in the Ghana Armed Forces under President Mills are concerned.

What would General Nunoo-Mensah say about the piecemeal and surreptitious manner in which all Akan and officers perceived to be NPP sympathizers especially those from the same three regions are being removed from command one after the other. For instance, Lt Col EW Kotiah and Lt Col JA Aphour commanding officers of 66 Artillery Regiment and 6th Battalion respectively were removed with alacrity from command in very unprofessional ways. Similarly, Lt Col A Serebour was dramatically replaced with Lt Col AK Dzisi (an Ewe) in March 2009.

Additionally and more importantly, all the Akan commanding officers of the Infantry Battalions are being removed from command one after the other using identical “communist inferior tactics” (CIT). For the avoidance of any doubts here is the list of those affected and those in command now.

1. 3rd Battalion of Infantry (Sunyani) - Lt Col MA Amoah (ER) replaced by Lt Col CK Lithur (Ewe)

2. 4th Battalion of Infantry (Kumasi) - taken over by Major SWK Parbey (Ewe) after death of Lt Col Amponsem-Boateng (Ashanti)

3. 5th Battalion of Infantry (Burma Camp) - Lt Col AY Nsiah (Ashanti) replaced by Lt Col LK Gbetanu (Ewe)

4. 2nd Battalion of Infantry (Takoradi) - retained by Lt Col AK Dawohoso (Ewe) appointed by NPP Administration

5. Defence Signal Regiment (Burma Camp) - Lt Col M Essien (WR) replaced by Lt Col A Ntem (Ewe)

6. Base Ordinance Depot - Lt Col ET Darquah (ER) replaced by Major SDK Gbezeh (Ewe)
7. Defence Mechanical Transport Battalion - Lt Col GY Adjei (BAR) replaced by Lt Col S Gagakuma (Ewe)

If these appointments are added to others such as Recce Regiment which is commanded by Lt Col JK Akou-Adjei (Volta Region) who was appointed by the NPP Administration, then the hypocrisy of General Nunoo-Mensah becomes more and more evident.

Has General Nunoo-Mensah thought about the atrocities, harassment, victimization, embarrassment and frustration being meted to Akan officers especially those from the three “notorious” regions? For example, why would Brigadier General JK Klobodu be appointed Director General (Planning and Development) for over 6 months (from May – December 2009) with the rank of Colonel over Colonel JK Kumah (a senior Colonel) before the former’s promotion to the rank of Brigadier General and eventual release of the latter in March 2010? Did Generals Nunoo-Mensah and Smith think about the stress, frustration and depression that such a situation caused Col JK Kumah? Again, why would Generals Nunoo-Mensah and Smith punish, torment and frustrate Brigadier General JS Nkrumah who had been Deputy Commandant for over 2 years before his mate’s elevation. Incidentally, both Brigadier Generals JS Nkrumah and Col JK Kumah are from the Brong Ahafo Region. So, once more, politics and ethnicity are at play and yet General Nunoo-Mensah is helpless, deaf, dumb and blind to them.

What do Generals Nunoo-Mensah and Smith say about the frustration and humiliation being meted to Colonel K Oppong-Otchere? Why should juniors and mates of Colonel Oppong-Otchere be promoted to the rank of Brigadier General and given commensurate appointments while he has the appointment of Deputy Commandant meriting the rank of Brigadier General and yet he was not promoted? Worst of all, several attempts were made to get him a UN appointment for the rank of Colonel in Sudan (Dafur), to deny him the promotion, to no avail. Determined to get rid of Col K Oppong-Otchere from the GAF, Gen Smith and his bootlickers have managed to push Col Oppong-Otchere to Liberia to replace Col E Tetteh-Akunor, his junior in a Colonel’s appointment. This is a demotion and humiliation. Why was Colonel BF Kusi, a junior of Colonel Oppong-Otchere, given Acting Brigadier Genral to go to La Côte d’Ivoire for a similar UN appointment but Col Oppong-Otchere leaves a Brigadier General’s appointment in Ghana for a Colonel’s appointment with the UN? The two situations are diametrically opposite in the treatment of officers. The reason for this anomaly is that Colonel BF Kusi is a Rawlings man (special assistant to Mrs Konadu Rawlings) and therefore a member of the NDC fraternity. So again, Generals Nunoo-Mensah and Smith, politics in today’s GAF is real and is flourishing with your consent and concurrence. Oh ye hypocrites!!! Again, why should Colonel G Partington be promoted Brigadier General and appointed Director General Joint Operations when he is very ill and cannot go to work while Gp Capt Brachie who is not as seriously ill as Brigadier Partington, and was going to work, be released? Is it also not a case of politics and ethnicity in the Armed Forces?

Not satisfied with their lot, the Ewes in the GAF with the connivance, abetment, acquiescence and express approval of Generals Nunoo-Mensah, Smith, Adinkrah and Blay are pushing for Brigadier General Agbenuzah to go to La Côte d’Ivoire as the Defence Advisor to avoid compulsory retirement by age on 3rd January 2011.

The plan hatched to suit the political and ethnic imperatives of the NDC government under the auspices of General Nunoo-Mensah include having Brigadier General GK Adjei to fill the vacancy created by the departure of Colonel K Oppong-Otchere between July and October 2010 when he would be retired compulsorily by age.

Brigadier General DK Frimpong would fill the gap at GAFCSC as Deputy Commandant to pave way for Brigadier General BF Kusi to be appointed as the Principal Staff officer of the Minister of Defence to please Flt Lt JJ Rawlings and Nana Konadu. Brigadier General DK Frimpong, who is an Ashanti, has been retained in the service because his wife is an Ewe.

Thereafter, Brigadier General JS Nkrumah would be shifted to Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre to be Deputy Commandant to take over from Brigadier General GK Adjei. These movements would create room for Colonel DJ Sakyi to be promoted Brigadier General to take over from Brigadier General Dan Prah as the Commander Army Combat Training School (ACTS). Brigadier General Dan Prah would then take over as the Deputy Commandant MATS. The other permutation on the drawing board is to shift Brigadier General JK Forkuo to MATS as Deputy Commandant for Colonel DJ Sakyi to take over as the Director General Training at General Headquarters.

The promotion of Group Captain EK Boateng (Ewe) is also in the offing. The Military High Command is feverishly looking for vacancies for the would-be Air Commodore EK Boateng between now and December 2010 as age is not on his side.

There are other interesting developments in the Ghana Armed Forces of today. Suddenly, Ewe officers who went on voluntary retirement under the NPP Administration are being encouraged to re-join the system. One of such cases involves Wing Commander SK Fianya who voluntarily retired in 2008 and was on terminal leave when the NDC came to power. He has been re-instated and is currently the Deputy Director Administration at the Airforce Headquarters. Wing Commander SK Fianya was the Airforce Representative on the 2009/2010 recruitment exercise. He played a dominant role in getting candidates from the Volta Region and sympathizers of the NDC into the military. The statistics for the Airforce in particular, the Army and Navy in general and especially the Navy, where Wing Commander Fianya found a willing and cooperative partner in Lt Cdr Kpetigo of Navy Headquarters point to that assertion.

Is it not ridiculous, outrageous and a clear case of politics and ethnicity in the military that all efforts are being made to re-instate Brigadier General AK Amedoh who out of his own volition retired from the GAF and took up an appointment with the UN? Why would Brigadier General Joseph Nunoo-Mensah sit unconcerned to allow all these happenings in the Ghana Armed Forces only to turn round to appeal to the Military High Command to eschew politics and ethnicity from the military? Are Generals Nunoo-Mensah and Smith and Lt Col AK Gbevlo-Lartey not responsible for the docility, inaction, cowardice, divide-and-rule, favoritism and discrimination along political and ethnic lines shown by the current Military High Command? Well, we live to see!!!

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