The Minister for Defense, Dominic Nitiwul, Tuesday, laid before Parliament the controversial agreement between the Government of the Republic of Ghana and the United States of America on “Defense cooperation, the Status of United States forces, and Access to and use of agreed facilities and areas in the Republic of Ghana” on behalf of the Government.
The agreement was subsequently referred to the joint committees on Defense and Interior and Legal, Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs by the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Prof. Aaron Michael Oquaye.
The move by the Defense Minister follows Cabinets approval of a memorandum on the said agreement at its twenty-eight meeting held on Thursday, March 8, 2018.
Per the dictates of the said agreement, the United States forces and civilians may among other things enter and exit Ghana with United States Government-furnished identification for military personnel, and identification card and collective movement or individual travel orders, and for civilian personnel, a passport and official orders.
Ghana would also provide unimpeded access to and use of agree facilities and areas to United States forces, United States contractors, and others as mutually agreed by the two parties. Such agreed facilities and areas or portions thereof, provided by Ghana shall be designated as either for exclusive use by United States forces or to be jointly used by United States forces and Ghana.
The West African country shall also provide access to and use of a runway that meets the requirements of United States forces.
The United States forces would also exercise all rights and authorities that are necessary for the use, operation, defense, or control of agreed facilities and areas, including taking appropriate measures to protect United States forces.
In addition to that the United States forces and contractors may undertake construction activities on, and make alterations and improvements to, agreed facilities and areas. The United States forces may also carry out construction works and other services with military and civilian personnel.
They have also been authorized to control entry to agreed facilities and areas that have been provided for exclusive use by United States forces, and to coordinate entry with the authorities of Ghana at agreed facilities and areas provided for joint use by United States forces and Ghana, for purposes of safety and security.