President Nana Akufo-Addo has maintained that he was motivated to enter into a military cooperation agreement with the United States of America due to the increasing threat posed by terrorists activities.
Similar agreements by his predecessors were influenced by similar threats, he said in an address to Ghanaians on Thursday evening in an attempt to settle the controversy that has greeted the ratification of the agreement.
“We were satisfied that the conditions which necessitated the Agreement, namely the creeping threat to the peace of the region, had not disappeared. If anything, the threat had increased and, therefore, the need had arisen for continuing with our co-operation,” President Akufo-Addo explained.
In spite of the groundswell agitations against the current agreement, he pointed out that there has been no suggestion in the past that “the United States of America had abused any of the privileges or concessions granted under any of these agreements, and it would, thus, have been deemed an unfriendly act to attempt to deny them any concession granted them under those agreements.”
The President further stated, “above everything else, the crux of the matter is this. Ghana has built a formidable reputation for its contribution to peace-keeping around the world.
“Although these peace-keeping operations have always been under the aegis of the United Nations, no one doubts the fact that they have been made possible by the contributions largely of the United States of America.”
President Akufo-Addo indicated to Ghanaians that he was upbeat about what is in store for Ghana for approving the military agreement.
“The Co-operation Agreement, which has subsisted, which we have approved, can only enhance the global effort to preserve the peace in our region,” he stressed.
“It is important also to state that the conditions of the Agreement mirror closely the conditions under which Ghana participates in peace-keeping operations under the United Nations. When our troops go on most peacekeeping duties, they do not carry their national passports, they carry their military identity.”
President Akufo-Addo also asserted that unlike his predecessors who shrouded such agreement in secrecy, his government would do things differently.
“After all, you, the Ghanaian people, had voted massively for change; therefore, there was simply no way my government would ever keep hidden from you, the people, agreements of such a nature. I believe that the fall-out from this decision only shows the growing maturation of our democracy.”
Nonetheless, the opposition National Democratic Congress has maintained that the agreement in its current form must be abrogated or reviewed, suggesting it is compromising the sovereignty of the nation for a pittance.”
Meanwhile, a security analyst, Mr. Emmanuel Kotin who has spoken extensively against the agreement, filed a suit invoking the Supreme Court of Ghana to declare the agreement as null and void.