General News of Wednesday, 18 June 2008
Akim Achiase (E/R), June 18, GNA - The Jungle Warfare School (JWS of the Ghana Armed Forces has incorporated the cultivation of staples food crops as its contribution to the national effort at alleviating possible hardship, which the world food crises could unleash on the citizenry. This was announced by Major General Amadu Kardo Abdulai, Commandant of Military Academy and Training Schools (MATS) in Accra when he launched the "Jungle Farm" and "Jungle Stream" for JWS, located at Akim Achiase in the Eastern Region at the weekend.
"In response to the world-wide food crises which is impacting on the nation, the Jungle Warfare School has embarked on the cultivation of some staples like maize, plantain, cocoyam and cassava," he said. The JWS, also called Seth Anthony Barracks is undertaking a sachet water project which produces between 400 and 500 bags of sachet water (pure water) per day.
Maj. Gen. Abdulai noted that, the original idea of cultivating the farms was to expand the forest cover of the school's training area, "in line with the Ghana Armed Forces Environmental Protection Programme and maintain the forest for sustained use". He stated that, the provision of clean and safe drinking water had been identified as another area that, the school could contribute to health security within its area of responsibility; "hence, the production of sachet water called 'Jungle Stream' for the troops and the local population.
The Commandant cautioned that, since "water is life", contaminated water could create problems and therefore, advised other producers of all forms of drinking water, to endeavour to allow their products be certified and also sealed under strict hygienic conditions. "It is the expectation of the school that, corporate bodies and organized institutions and groups would direct considerable efforts and resources at food production to forestall undue crisis in the months ahead," he added.
Maj. Gen Abdulai expressed gratitude to political and traditional authorities for their co-operation with the military, especially the chiefs who released land for the farming projects, adding, "the military had inherent talents, potentials and capabilities worth tapping, to enable them to contribute to national development."
Lt. Col. Peter Nicholas Andoh, Commander of the JWS, which has tiger as its symbol, pointed out: "The expert delivery of our training has attracted patronage from other sister African countries and troops from some developed countries, notably the Sierra Leone, United Kingdom and USA".
Lt.Col Andoh stated that the school had internal security responsibility for the Birim Central Municipality and the Birim South District, saying: "In this regard, it assists the civil authority to maintain or restore law and order as appropriate". Mr. Samuel Antwi Berkoe, Birim South District Chief Executive described the "Jungler Farm" as very scientific and advised that it should not become a nine-day wonder.
Osabarima Gyane Akenten II, chief of Akim Achiase, pledged to release more lands to expand the farms, when the need arose.