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US Embassy presents equipment to Armed Forces

BY: Nii Martey M. Botchway
 Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan (right), the US Ambassador to Ghana, handing over the equipmet to Major General Thomas Oppong-Peprah, the Chief of Army Staff
Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan (right), the US Ambassador to Ghana, handing over the equipmet to Major General Thomas Oppong-Peprah, the Chief of Army Staff

The United States (US) Embassy in Ghana has presented 100 very high frequency (VHF) hand-held Motorola phones and 10 repeaters to the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF). 

The repeaters are imbedded into a network capable of covering a wide area in terms of space or scope and will complement the operations of the GAF at the Bundase Training Camp.  

The donation falls within the partnership framework between the GAF and the US Embassy and the Global Peace Initiative (GPOI) programme and aims at enhancing communication at the Bundase Training Camp.

 With the donation, VHF communication at the camp will be lengthened from the current 12-kilometre radius to 35-kilometre radius.

The US Department of State and the GPOI programme funded the equipment at $300,000, including the cost of installation and training of GAF personnel on the use of the equipment.

Hand-over ceremony

At a ceremony at the Bundase Training Camp to hand over the equipment, the US Ambassador to Ghana, Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan, said it was expected to improve pre-deployment training at the camp ahead of United Nations peacekeeping missions and also support regional stability initiatives and peacekeeping endeavours.

She said the US and Ghana had a security cooperation agreement that was long-standing, noting that she was gratified to see the relationship between the two countries grow from strength to strength.

Mrs Sullivan also lauded the transformational efforts put in place by the Military High Command at the camp since her last visit two decades ago and commended the GAF for their contribution and professionalism in ensuring international peace and security.

“Ghanaian soldiers, sailors and airmen and women play a vital role in regional stability and continue to raise the standard for professionalism in the conduct of peacekeeping missions,” she said.

She disclosed that her outfit was proud to team up with the GAF on many issues and expressed her readiness to visit the camp again when work on the US-funded project to supply water to the place and surrounding communities was completed. 

Significant investment

The Chief of Army Staff, Major General Thomas Oppong-Peprah, received the equipment on behalf of the GAF.

He said the equipment donation represented a significant milestone investment in VHF coverage at the camp and with the GPOI programme.

He explained that besides expanding VHF communication at the camp to improve communication and monitoring activities, the initiative would also expand the training modules that were being taught at the camp.

"The incorporation of communication into the training of the GAF brings an added advantage of situating reality into our training," he said.

Appreciation

The Chief of Army Staff expressed his profound appreciation to the US Ambassador for the donation.

He noted that the friendship between the US and Ghana had proved to be growing stronger with each passing year.

Maj. Gen. Oppong-Peprah said the Bundase Training Camp was undergoing new development all the time, and that the contribution of the US, through the African Contingency Operations Training and Assistance (now GPOI), was immense and could not be over-emphasised.