Forgive's Folder: Recruitment exercise at GAF cause of personnel indiscipline

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In the part of the world where I exist, most people are considered “good story tellers" not because they have the proclivity for telling or writing a good story but because of the drama and twist connected with tale telling.

Most often, the stories are told as if the narrator's were present when the incident happened. That is the "typical Ghanaian" for you.

When something happens like the murder of the young Military Captain, how the story was narrated is jaw-breaking. I have no idea how the whole thing happened or how it started.

My opinion on the issue is purely based on hearsay, pictures and videos circulating on social media. My understanding of an association or organization is to create a sense of belonging and identity hence the use of ID cards, Tags, Uniforms and other forms of identification. I will like to highlight a few issues regarding the young Major's murder.

I know for a fact that in the military, there is a training outfit that is worn when jogging or training. I don't know if the young man was wearing one. I also understand there is the army-green round or V-neck that is used during keep fit and other training sessions. Additionally there is also the unit training outfit that can be used. I can’t tell if the Major was wearing any of these.

LESSON LEARNT

Wear your tag or whatever makes you stand out as a member of an institution or organization. Wear it from home to work and back. You may be mistaken for a thief or robber and your ID might save you.

I heard people painfully and sadly discuss the murder of the young Major and other tales that evolved. Most people I listened to concluded “this will never happen in Rawlings' regime.” Of course I agree.

Growing up in the barracks, I witnessed the enlistment and enrolling of personnel into the Ghana Armed forces. I recalled the 'Military Styr' a big van that moved from house to house hand picking abled, stout, huge men to join the Army. As little as I was, I knew the rationale behind that was to instill fear in the citizens and to offer respect to the state. The mere sight of these men was scary and by their uniform they commanded immeasurable respect.  Yes, the reason this will not happen in Rawling’s regime is because it is a common scene to chance on a personnel of the Armed Forces who is as short as four feet five inches, small in size and looks. Today I wonder if height and body count in the selection process of personnel for the Ghana Armed forces.

Indiscipline

When the issue of indiscipline popped up, others blamed it on the erstwhile Rawling’s regime whereas others blame the Kuffour government. Whichever way it is, it has come to stay. How many people know that uniform personnel belong to the state?  Moreover, it is no more ethics but a privilege to find uniform personnel gleefully drink alcohol and wring their waist in public places as if they are civilians.  There is utter disrespect for the uniform. How much more the personality? How many people know that uniform personnel are not allowed to hug or even be seen at certain public places?

The indiscipline in the country has eroded every institution in Ghana. Even the once fearful Military.

Corruption

In 2006 when I graduated from the prestigious University of Ghana, myself and a few friends decided to try the Military Academy after several attempts. It was shocking to hear Colonel Kojo Damoah tell one of my friends that his “body configuration was not in proportion.” How ridiculous?  For me, I was told it was not a family business so I should retire home though I meet the army retirement.

Today, the seed that was sown by Colonel Kojo Damaoh and his associates is been ripped by innocent souls. People are flown from outside without medicals, outdoor leaderless test among other processes. Before one could say jack, those men brought outside are in uniform. I am writing not to condemn the Ghana Armed Forces but to caution it as a concerned citizen. Addressing issues like the selection process and reorientation in the service will be of great benefit to the country. You can agree with me that this will not happen in Rawling’s regime indeed. Without any political undertone to this note let’s learn to call a spade a spade and give praise where it is due.

Lessons Learnt

Total discipline in the Policing and Soldiering profession must be ensured.  Which means that the excessive in take of alcohol and partying in uniforms at public places should be frowned upon. Moreover, it has to be ensured that people go through due process and adequate training to be enlisted or enrolled into the service.

Thing do happen for a reason and am confident the gruesome murder of the young Major will serve as a wake-up call for the whole country. I will suggest that government and citizen’s campaign massively against mob justice which has claimed lives of innocent souls.

In furtherance to that, it will be incumbent on government to put stringent measures in place to deal ruthlessly with these mobs. Just as the media and government are campaigning against Galamsey, it will be prudent to offer the same energy to this heinous crime.

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Forgive Francis Amedeka

Forgiveamedeka1@gmail.com