Feature Article of Wednesday, 24 October 2012
…..The True Facts & Figures
The composition of the Ghana Armed Forces and whether our Governments have committed themselves to striving at a regional and ethnical balance as the Constitution of Ghana requires have been a matter of conjecture and, many a time, unnecessary argument not really based on available facts.
The trend and phenomenon has pervaded since the Free Press of the Thommy Thompsons and Eben Quarcoos, around 1992, attempted a debate that was immediately shot down by apparatchiks in the then administration.
Thirty years down the line, the canker festers, even in a climate people particularly politicians in power consider innocuous. Incidentally, those who spearhead such divisive, subversive tendencies are the first to accuse others of tribalism and fomenting trouble in the country.
Without taking any sides, and presenting the picture as it is – unless the names and positions or ranks we have been informed of are fictitious – DAYBREAK insists that Ghana may be sitting on a time bomb.
Aside of this is the culture that hallows ethnicity and cronyism above efficiency and professionalism which has also pervade the institution since late 70s. For instance, according to career soldier and Staff Officer of the Ghana Armed Forces, Lt. Colonel SK Ofosu-Appiah in his book ALLEGIANCE VERSUS INDISCIPLINE, he states: “…in matters of promotion and appointment, much consideration has been given to ‘whom you know’ and what ethnic group one comes from. This is criminal…”
Again, a former CDS and now National Security Advisor, Brigadier Nunoo-Mensah, commenting on the cringing lack of transparency in the service, confirmed recently “that when names of competent people were mentioned in the appointment of service chiefs, the tendency is for politicians to whine that “he is not one of us,” as captured by the Daily Graphic of March 31, 2009.
As we went to press, official information we gathered revealed that, of the total number of 938 Army Officers in the service, 228 are Ewes; of the 165 Navy officers; the Ewes are 39 and the Air Force has 50 Ewe officers out of 184 men. This is in spite of the fact that no official record exist as to the Ewes outnumbering any ethnical grouping in the country.
In the case of the Other Ranks, the Ewes have 2646 soldiers out of the 9728 men in the Army, 458 Navy men out of the total figure of 1742 and in the Air Force; the number is 543 out of 1726.
The data on the composition of the Ghana Armed Forces as at date are as follows:
Ashanti Region has 115 for Army, 17 for Navy, 16 for Air Force, bringing the total to 148 representing 11.50%; Brong Ahafo has 27 for Army, 7 for Navy, 10 for Air Force, bringing the total to 44 and representing 3.4% and the Central Region 100 for Army, 27 for Navy, 16 for Air Force, bringing the total to 143 and representing 11.11%.
Eastern Region has 143 for Army, 29 for Navy, 33 for Air Force bringing the total to 205 representing 15.93%, with Greater Accra having 105 for the Army, 15 for Navy, 27 for Air Force, bringing the total to 147 and representing 11.42%.
The Northern Region has 62 for Army, 8 for Navy, 10 for Air Force, bringing the total to 80 representing 6.22% whilst the Upper East Region has 75 for Army, 7 for Navy, 9 for Air Force bringing the total to 91 representing 7.07%; and the Upper West Region 52 for Army, 11 for Navy, 8 for Air Force bringing the total to 71 and representing 5.52%.
Controversial Volta Region has 228 for Army, 39 for Navy, 50 for Air Force, bringing the total to 317 representing 24.63% and finally, the Western Region, which has 31 for Army, 5 for Navy, 5 for Air Force, bringing the total to 41 and representing 3.18%.
Ashanti Region has 1055 for Army, 136 for Navy, 174 for Air Force bringing the total to 1365 representing 10.34%; Brong Ahafo has 518 for Army, 75 for Navy, 70 for Air Force, bringing the total to 663 representing 5.02% and Central Region has 954 for Army, 256 for Navy, 194 for Air Force, bringing the total to 1404 and representing 10.64%.
Eastern Region has 1868 for Army, 321 for Navy, 360 for Air Force, bringing the total to 2539 representing 19.32%, whilst Greater Accra has 619 for Army, 174 for Navy and 104 for Air Force, bringing the total to 897 and representing 6.80%.
Northern Region has 582 for Army, 77 for Navy and 70 for Air Force, bringing the total to 729 representing 5.52%; Upper East Region has 795 for Army, 120 for Navy and 98 for Air Force, bringing the total to 1013 and representing 7.68%.
Upper West Region has 380 for Army, 52 for Navy and 73 for Air Force, bringing the total to 505 and representing 3.83% whilst the Volta Region has 2646 for Army, 458 for Navy, 534 for Air Force, bringing the total to 3638 and representing 27.57%.
Western Region has 311 for Army, 73 for Navy, 49 for Air Force, bringing the total to 433 and representing 3.28%. The verdict NOW is the conscience of the nation.