The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has urged the military to continue their effort to clamp down on illegal mining activities and other unsanctioned forest activities in the country.
While lauding the military for successes recorded in the fight against illegal mining activities over the period, Dr. Bawumia noted that the impact of environmental degradation and pollution of water-bodies has been costly. It is against this background that he urged the military and other security services in the country to remain undaunted in the fight against illegal mining and lumbering.
The Vice President, who was speaking at the graduation ceremony for Short Service Commission/Special Duties 59 at the Ghana Military Academy, acknowledged the threat being posed by terrorism activities in the West African sub-region. “Ghana’s northern frontiers are seriously threatened, calling for a comprehensive approach to state security. I therefore entreat all of you to get involved in safeguarding the security of our dear nation.”
Dr. Bawumia insisted that collective vigilance and security consciousness is key to maintaining peace in the country, while charging the military graduates to always uphold the nation’s interests first.
Government, he said, is delivering on its promise to reconstruct and upgrade the Ghana Military Academy, “to bring it to par with other reputable military academies in the world”.
To this end, the Vice President said the first phase of construction work on the Ghana Military Academy is almost complete. “The renovated officer cadets’ mess and the academy parade square have been completed and commissioned, and the 320-seat capacity two-storey classroom block has been completed, among others,” he stated.
Additionally, government is said to have commenced a strategic expansion and modernisation of the Ghana Armed Forces – in line with the threat analysis and matching these with the acquisition of requisite equipment, logistics and infrastructure development, and increasing manpower.
According to Dr. Bawumia, the expansion has already led to the creation and establishment of the Army Special Operations Brigade, Armoured Brigade among others. Government is also constructing 832 accommodation units for the Ghana Armed Forces across the country.
In all, a total of 88 cadets comprising 60 males and 28 females were commissioned into the Ghana Armed Forces. The Intake is made up of first- and second-degree holders from the various tertiary education institutions: with qualifications such as medical officers, pharmacists, nurses and clergy. The cadets, as part of the training, were introduced to physical training, drills, tactics, fieldcraft, map-reading and weapon-handling.
The five-month course also saw the cadets receiving lessons on military rudiments to assist in transforming them from their civilian state to prepare them ahead of future tasks in their newly acquired profession.