The government is prepared to set up a new military base at Enzulebu in the Western Region to protect the country’s oil resources there.
President Akufo-Addo made the announcement at the graduation parade of the Ghana Military Academy (GMA), Teshie, near Accra, where he commissioned 138 cadet officers into the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF).
The parade, which featured cadets from the Regular Career Course 58 and Short Service Commission/Special Duty Course 56, had two foreign officers from Guinea.
In his speech, the president revealed that “a contract has also been signed for the construction of a Forward Operating Base (FOB) at Enzulebu in the Western Region to protect our oil resources.”
FOB is any secured forward operational level military position commonly a military base that is used to support strategic goals and tactical objectives.
A FOB may or may not contain an airfield, hospital, machine shop or other logistical facilities while the base may be used for an extended period of time.
They are traditionally supported by Main Operating Bases that are required to provide backup support to them while a FOB also improves reaction time to local areas as opposed to having all troops on the main operating base.
Meanwhile, in conjunction with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), the Ministry of Defense, has also ordered six patrol boats for the Ghana Navy to help in the protection of Ghana’s maritime resources and its oil fields.
“We have increased, since February 2017, the UN peacekeeping daily earned amount from $30 to $35, and consistently ensured that troops are paid at their operational areas rather than being paid here at home,” he added.
Whilst acknowledging that there are still some issues to be addressed, President Akufo-Addo assured that “other accommodation and equipment needs of the Ghana Armed Forces will be duly resolved to enhance efficiency and morale.”
President Akufo-Addo reiterated the commitment of his government to addressing the infrastructural challenges confronting the GAF, adding that the challenges of the Armed Forces would be resolved to boost its efficiency and morale of troops.
Apart from that, he also talked about plans to build state-of-the-art facilities to meet the needs of a 21st Century military.
That, he said, was because Ghana cannot achieve the kind of economy that would provide the Ghanaian people with a dignified standard of living without peace and security, saying “you will be provided with the resources to carry out your mandate effectively…this is the legacy I would want to bequeath to the Ghana Armed Forces.”
To the newly-commissioned officers, President Akufo-Addo reminded them that they were joining a profession whose members had not only upheld its image but have and continue to ensure that the territorial integrity of the country is preserved to make it peaceful and stable.
He appealed to them to meet the expectations of Ghanaians in executing the onerous obligation placed on them, adding that they should be guided by the principles of service, devotion and sacrifice.
The president entreated them to discharge their duties professionally and diligently, and not use their position to antagonize the citizens whose sacrifices had made their training possible.
“I entreat you all to put into practice the qualities of good leadership instilled in the Academy…lead exemplary lives and ensure the men under your command also do the same.”
Second Lieutenant Daniel Boadu Opoku was adjudged the Best All Round Officer Cadet in the Regular Course 58.
He received the Sword of Honour from the president as his prize.