special forces cause panic on independence day

// Latest News | special forces cause panic on independence day
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

The explanations by some government officials including a Deputy Local Government and Rural Development Minister, Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, for the setting up of a ‘special unit’ in the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) have raised questions about the motive behind the move.

On Independence Day, Tuesday, March 6, 2012, the military high command outdoored what they called ‘special forces’, reminiscent of the disbanded and hitherto dreaded 64 Infantry Battalion, popularly called Commando Unit.

Described as an elite group made up of personnel drawn from the Army, Navy and Air Force, the soldiers underwent special endurance and weapons handling training programme to prime them for deployment for unique operations.

The 55th anniversary celebration parade held at the Independence Square in Accra offered a rare opportunity to the government to scare the citizenry as gleaned from the reckless utterances of government appointees.

The posture of the officers and their grim faces were reminiscent of the dark days of the 64 Infantry Battalion then commanded by Col. Larry Gbevlo-Lartey (rtd), now Acting National Security Coordinator.

A military officer who took part in the commentary on national television during the parade appeared not to have any knowledge about the activities and operations of this new unit when he was asked during the live programme.

But DAILY GUIDE sources said these officers were carefully handpicked from the various units of the military and brought together to form the so-called ‘special forces’.

Unlike other security agencies, students and Trade Union organisations who took part in the march past, this group of well-built military officers, sporting sunglasses and wielding sophisticated weapons including rocket propelled grenade launchers and state-of-the-art machine guns, executed unusual foot drills reminiscent of Russia and Nazi Germany.

Elvis Afriyie Ankrah is reported to have said that the ‘special unit’ was set up to ‘crush’ elements of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) who may want to carry through their ‘all die be die’ mantra ahead of the 2012 polls.

Others including Deputy Information Minister, Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa and Parliamentary candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Mohammed Abdulai Mubarak aka Ras Mubarak made similar ominous remarks about the unit.

Ras, a one-time ardent supporter of the Rawlingses who has switched to the Mills camp, posted on his Facebook wall, “2day’s independence parade was exceptional. Our Special Forces made my day with their war-like display. With these ‘scary’ forces, who wants 2 shout ‘all die be die’? We can continue 2 sleep soundly in da knowledge dat, dey got our backs covered – Rambo style. Congrats 2 da forces. As we celebrate 55yrs of nationhood, let us not 4get da sacrifices of those who made freedom possible.”

These and other interpretations and explanations put out by NDC functionaries about the reason behind the establishment of the ‘special unit’ have given others including the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) cause to raise concerns about its intended purpose.

A leading member of the party and spokesperson for the party’s flagbearer, Mustapha Hamid, has questioned the rationale behind the establishment of the unit.

NPP General Secretary Kwadwo Owusu-Afriyie said that went to confirm their fears of government’s intention to create confusion in its strongholds, noting, “We know that the NDC is training people at Asutuare and elsewhere and all these are people that they are going to give military and police uniforms to so that they parade NPP strongholds like the Ashanti, Eastern, Brong Ahafo, Central regions”.

“We are aware of what they are doing and we have photographs of people who are being trained at Asutuare and elsewhere and so at the appropriate time this will be made available to the good people of this country,” he said.

“If they think that they are doing this in the quiet and that nobody knows, the very people they are training, some of them come to tell us what is happening and we have pictorial evidence.”

The military high command has however attempted to douse the flame that the outdooring of the elite group has instigated.

Public Affairs Director of the Ghana Armed Forces, Col. Mbawine Atintande, however said there was no cause for alarm.

Unaware of when the unit was formed, Atintande claimed the ‘special forces’ were created two or three years ago to respond to new challenges facing the country since the discovery of oil.

He said the show of force was meant to assure Ghanaians they were safe and that the army was capable of adequately protecting them, whilst telling the entire world that the Ghana Armed Forces were equipped to decisively deal with any external aggression.

He discounted claims that the unit was formed to intimidate Ghanaians during the 2012 general elections.

Tagged : Independence Day, Ghana Independence Day, Special Forces, Ghana Armed Forces, 64 Infantry Battalion, Commando Unit

Headlines Newsview all

yvonne nelson’s cousin jason blasts iyanya for being disrespectful

Following the to and fro between the pair, a new tattoo has surfaced which gives a new dimension to what really may have panned out ... Full story

dad kills son for eating his gari

A 45-year-old farmer of Agona Obosomase in the Agona East District of the Central Region, Kwesi Appiah has beheaded his four-year-old son, Kofi Takyi, for ... Full story

helicopter chases nana addo dankwa akuffo addo

Unusual night helicopter movements in the general area of the residences of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo near the Nima Police Station, and that of New ... Full story

nigerians upset with juliet ibrahim s comment

Ghanaian actress Juliet Ibrahim is caught in the middle of rising disquiet among showbiz followers in Nigeria following comments she passed on attempts to raize ... Full story

ghana, other african countries slam uk’s draconian policy

Several Ghanaians have slammed the United Kingdom’s “iron curtain” immigration policy that will require visitors to the country paying a whopping £3,000 (approximately GH¢9,000) cash ... Full story

policemen run for dear lives at ashiaman

A violent demonstration by drivers and a section of the youth of Ashaiman yesterday in protest against the poor conditions of roads in the municipality ... Full story

michael essien secretly weds his publicist akosua puni

There have been speculations for months now that Ghanaian footballer and Chelsea star Michael Essien is married to his publicist, Akosua Puni, a report they ... Full story

yvonne nelson breaks silence on romance and break up with iyanya, “i really really loved him”

We love the way her name rhymes, we love watching her act on our screens, we love to hear the interesting tales about her life ... Full story

ruth williams of tv3 i was raped twice

Ruth Williams, a former contestant of TV3′s singing reality competition, Mentor one has made a chilling confession that she had been raped twice and abused ... Full story

ghanaian artiste sarkodie in love

Ghanaian award-winning artiste Sarkodie has disclosed that there is one particular ‘fan’ who he has fallen in love with. The love life of the 2012 Black ... Full story

ghanian model afi antonio denies relationship with kofi adjorlolo

30-year-old photo model, Afi Antonio, has denied reports that she is in a relationship with ace actor Kofi Adjorlolo. The supposed relationship made headlines two weeks ... Full story

Comment on: special forces cause panic on independence day

Breaking News

Fuel Prices Go Up By 3.04% From Today

Ghanaians must brace up to pay more for fuel at the pumps beginning today, November 20, as the 17.5% increment on petroleum products takes effect.Finance ...

Bill Cosby Responds To Rape Allegations

This previously unaired footage marks the first time Cosby has had any response other than remaining completely silentBill Cosby said “I don’t talk about it” ...

Security Agencies Asked To Join The Fight Against Smuggling

Mr Gabriel Asamoah, Senior Revenue Officer at the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) Office in Tamale, has appealed to the Police and other security agencies, to ...

PHOTOS: Mercy Johnson's Children In Matching Jumpsuit

Mercy Johnson’s daughter, Purity ozioma okojie and son Henry in matching jumpsuit. ...

7 Nigerians Arrested With Fake Dollar Bills

Seven Nigerians suspected to be members of an armed robbery gang have been arrested along with a sack full of fake dollar bills and a ...

Introduce Innovative Programmes — Nana Konadu

Former First Lady, Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings, has urged private educational institutions to introduce innovative training programmes that will adequately prepare their students for the job ...

Kojo Antwi, Rex Omar, Reggie Rocstone, Zapp Mallet, Tic Tac Others To Battle For GHAMRO Positions

The Receiver-Managers of the Ghana Music Rights Organization (GHAMRO) on Wednesday, 12th November, 2014, held a general meeting with all contestants of the forth coming ...

Men More Likely To Help A Woman Wearing High Heels

Ladies, if you want a man at your feet, wear high heels. Research shows that men are more likely to help a woman wearing heels ...