General News Fri, 30 Nov 2001

Ministry of defence has no hand in selecting soldiers for courses

The Ministry of Defence has no hand in the selection of soldiers for courses, a statement issued in Accra by the Ministry said on Wednesday.

The statement was in reaction to a story carried by the Ghanaian Democrat in its November 26-28 edition, headlined: "Military officers being denied courses abroad." It explained that the selection of officers and men for courses either local or overseas was based on merit.

"The Armed forces is offered a number of vacancies by sister and allied countries and the Command has the prerogative of selecting, which courses to accept, based on the level of relevance to the Armed Forces.

"Such courses are compiled by the Directorate of Training and submitted to the Service Headquarters - Army, Navy and Air Force as the case may be.

"The Services nominate candidates based on Merit, Nature of Course, relevant unit (artillery, engineering, medical or logistics) and relevance of the course to the Armed Forces.


It noted that the Armed Forces had been sending officers and men on courses for several years and that there had never been the situation where the selection of the candidates had been based on ethnic bias as quoted by the paper.

The paper had alleged that while foreign courses were being put on hold, "soldiers from the NPP government's ethnic preference group" were being sent out on courses secretly to prepare them for strategic positions in the Armed forces.

The Statement said there was no iota of truth in the allegation that some officers on courses were being recalled from the United States and the United Kingdom and challenged the paper to provide the particulars of such officers for action to be taken.

Similarly it asked the paper to provide the Ministry with the list of Medical Officers and Para-medics that have been denied their legitimate rights to attend courses overseas.

The statement said the Ghana Armed Forces would always defend the unity and esprit de corps it had built within the service in the interest of the nation and cautioned individuals and groups that wanted to use ethnicity to cause disaffection in the military to desist form such unpatriotic and cowardly acts.


It once again reminded the media that the doors of the Armed Forces were always opened to them and the public for them to crosscheck their information before going to press in order to forestall such misinformation that fed the public with falsehood.

"We have stressed the need for the media to put national interest and security as a guiding principle in packaging news stories particularly when such stories affect the military.

"Those media houses who have specialised in sensationalising military stories in order to sell their products are advised to stop the practice and leave the military alone", the statement said.

Source: gna