Ghana-US agreement: Public discourse was unnecessary – Retired colonel

Source: Ghana| |Abubakar Ibrahim
Date: 6th-april-2018 Time:  11:02:03 pm

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A retired colonel of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) says Ghanaians should consider the benefits of the Ghana-US military agreement to the country before opposing it.

Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Aduhene pleaded that the Ghana Armed Forces should be allowed to benefit from equipment, training and assistance on other fronts that come with the agreement.

Contributing to the discussion on Ghana Connect on Joy FM Friday, he told host Evans Mensah that it is not important that delicate security details between the two countries are thrown out in the public domain.

According to him, the president in his address to the nation gave out too much information on the deal adding the country’s security arrangement should not be an issue of public discussion.

“Government wanted transparency and that is what has created this hullabaloo…agreements on security cooperation looks at the national interest as well as the national security situation before they are signed…you don’t have to the public to discuss it, no!” he said.

Related: We have not, will not offer military base to U.S. – Akufo-Addo

He explained that this is because most of the people do not understand the intricacies of the agreement as well as the processes.

Regarding the military men getting unchartered access to travel without passports he shared his experience while on peacekeeping in Morocco.

“When I was in Morocco, I could wear my uniform to everywhere, at the airport I was given a special treatment and I could drive without a license.

“I had a diplomatic status kind of…so it is not new with what the American soldiers have been doing in Ghana along…they have been training with us and there have not been any problems…restricted access does not mean that they will run and go anywhere,” he added.

However, a US army veteran Tetteh Effan who has served in Europe and Asia said the deal is not good enough for Ghana.

Related: US agreement: Akufo-Addo hits back at "unspeakable hypocrites"

According to him, the sovereignty of a name should not be limited in such negotiations demanding that what both parties bring to the table should be equal.

“We have brought ourselves to a point that it is very low to a point where the US Ambassador says giving us $20 million is a big deal when they are collecting more than as non-refundable fees that at the embassy. 

“I saw some sense of arrogance in the president’s speech when he criticised certain comments that were unnecessary. He should have explained a few things to Ghanaians and tell them to look forward to a better negotiation in the near future,” he said.

Mr Effan said he is pained that the president’s criticisms of dissenting views is a slap in the face of the people’s right to demand answers from their president.

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