The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Eric Kwakye Darfour, has called on the military and other security agencies to give practical support to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government to enable it to offer better governance and accelerated development to the nation.
He said the call had become imperative because without their support, the government’s fight against illegal miners, armed robbers, among other nation wreckers, which undermine national development, would be a mirage.
Mr Darfour made the call when he paid a familiarisation tour of the Jungle Warfare School at Akyem Achiase last Thursday to acquaint himself with the activities and challenges of the institution in order to help find solutions to them.
He noted with pride that the region had such an important military institution and promised to liaise with the Minister of Defence to address all their challenges for them to discharge their professional duties effectively.
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Mr Eric Kwakye Darfour inspecting a guard of honour mounted by a detachment of the soldiers
High standard of discipline
The regional minister commended the soldiers for exhibiting a high standard of discipline and urged civil society to take a cue from them to reduce indiscipline in the country.
He was full of praise for them for living at peace with the neighbouring communities and urged them to maintain the cordial relationship.
Mr Darfour said henceforth the Regional Coordinating Council would invite the top hierarchy of the soldiers to attend the monthly Regional Security Committee (REGSEC) meetings in Koforidua.
He stressed the need for the military to be ever-prepared to defend the nation at all times.
In response to the concern expressed by the Commandant of the JWS, Lt Col Cephas Tettey Broni, about the weak bridge spanning the Kasaawere stream at Oda, which had become a death trap, Mr Darfour stressed that he had contacted the roads minister to rehabilitate it to prevent the loss of lives.
He, however, stated that the bridge could not be repaired at the moment due to the volume of water in the stream as a result of the current heavy rains.
The Regional Minister seized the opportunity to address 198 Ghana Immigration Service recruits undergoing a course at the school and urged them to attach special importance to their training in order to contribute their quota to national development.
History of the Jungle Warfare School
Conducting the Regional Minister round, Lt Col Broni said the institution was first established at Obenemase in the Ashanti Region, was transferred to Accra in 1975 and finally relocated to Achiase on November 2, 1976, adding that in June 1991 it was renamed St Anthony Barracks.
He said it was named after Major Seth Anthony, the first African to be commissioned by the United Kingdom.
According to Lt Col Broni, the major challenges facing the institution included chieftaincy disputes, illegal mining and illegal logging in the area, but said with the coming into effect of Operation Vanguard, “galamsey” had reduced drastically.
He said apart from organising various courses for top Ghanaian middle level and junior military officers, some foreign army officers also attended jungle training courses at the barracks.
Lt Col Broni added that the institution also ran courses for financial institutions including the staff of CAL and Barclays Banks as well as the Ghana Immigration Service recruits.
He said the school also held annual open day on March 7 each year, which attracts thousands of people from all walks of life.
The commandant announced that the institution produced sachet water, which serves the officers and men, and the rest sold to the adjoining communities.