Peacekeepers to receive allowances on duty – Pres Akufo-Addo

President Akufo-Addo (middle seated), Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Foreign Affairs Minister (immediate left), Nana Asante Bediatuo, Executive Secretary (far left), and some members of the troop.

President Akufo-Addo (middle seated), Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Foreign Affairs Minister (immediate left), Nana Asante
Bediatuo, Executive Secretary (far left), and some members of the troop.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has indicated that personnel of the country’s security services, who embark on peacekeeping missions, would henceforth be paid their allowances while on duty tour.

According to the President, the situation which existed before his administration, where soldiers were paid their allowances, sometimes months after arriving in Ghana, would not be a feature of his administration.

“We will make it a principle that wherever the peacekeeping operation is, the peacekeepers will be paid there. That is the principle and we are not going to go back on that,” he said.

The President made this known last Saturday, when he interacted with the 210 Ghanaian peacekeeping troops, stationed in The Gambia, who are part of ECOWAS’ mission to that country.

President Akufo-Addo recounted how, in the run-up to the 2016 election, he indicated publicly that peacekeeping troops should be paid where they were and not when they returned to Ghana.

In fulfillment of this pledge, he told the soldiers that the money due to them for the first half of the operation, which would end today, February 20, had been released to them.

“The fifty soldiers who are to remain here for the next three months will also have what is due you released. All of you going back to Ghana on Monday will be paid in full before you leave here (Gambia)”, President Akufo-Addo said.

This announcement by the President drew spontaneous bouts of applause and appreciation from the soldiers gathered, who described it as a feat never witnessed in the history of the Ghana Armed Forces.

The President revealed that upon his assumption of office, “I was told about the arrears on peacekeeping operations owed to soldiers. I decided to do something about it … and I ordered the release of $13 million to cater for the arrears.”

This decision, he explained, was to ensure that the morale of soldiers was boosted, and to serve as an indication of his commitment to the welfare of the Ghana Armed Forces.

With the mission to The Gambia being his first decision as President and Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Force, President Akufo-Addo indicated that “when ECOWAS makes commitments, I believe that as good members, and members in good standing, we are required to honour those commitments.”

He noted that after consultation with the hierarchy of the Ghana Armed Forces, he decided that the request from ECOWAS for Ghana to contribute 210 soldiers to the mission in the Gambia was a good request, because it bordered on the peace and stability of a member country of ECOWAS.

“I am happy I did so because the contribution that you have made to restoring peace, security and democracy in Gambia is an exceptionally strong one. And, I am here to congratulate you on the work that you have done for ECOWAS and for Ghana. You have lifted the flag of our country high and you deserve all the praises that you are getting from the population and from everybody else”, the President said.

Caption President Akufo-Addo (middle seated), Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Foreign Affairs Minister (immediate left), Nana Asante Bediatuo, Executive Secretary ( far left), and some members of the troop.

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