General News of Wednesday, 7 March 2007
Kumasi, March 7, GNA- The Ghana Armed Forces, on Wednesday organized an open day in Kumasi to enable civilians to acquaint themselves with the work of the military.
The exercise, carried out by the personnel of the 4th Battalion of Infantry (4BN) as well as the other units of the Kumasi Garrison, was aimed at building a friendly relationship between civilians and the military.
Students and pupils from both public and private schools in the Kumasi metropolis attended the ceremony.
They toured the military museum, where they were treated to shootings practises and viewing of military hardware and accessories and later interacted with the personnel.
Briefing the Ghana News Agency, Major Francis Ampobi, Public Relations Officer, of the Northern Command of the Ghana Armed Forces, said the exercise was to foster good relationships between the public and the military.
He explained that, the military had in the past been perceived as being brutish, unsympathetic and molesting the public, adding that, the exercise was therefore to correct that wrong misconception and forge a better image for the military.
Major Ampobi stated that the military as an institution was meant to protect the public and advised the general public to discard the negative perception and see the military personnel as brothers and sisters who were there to protect them.
He explained that students and pupils who were the future leaders were the target for the exercise so that their minds would be cleared of the negative perception concerning the military.
Major Ampobi said the annual ceremony, which was introduced in 2000 is to enable members of the public to touch and observe the different kinds of weapons and how they are used during defence. Aside of that the public is given the chance to ask questions bothering their minds on the activities of the military.
Captain Daniel Adjetey of the 4BN in an interview, urged Ghanaians to brace the opportunity and that the action was not to expose military secrets, since the handling of weapons and some of the military hardware was not new to the society.
He appealed to the public to support the military, especially with information concerning crime to help combat it.