The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) has said it is embarking on series of exercises to curb the unlawful sale and use of military-pattern uniforms and accoutrements.
These measures, which will reinforce the existing methods, have become necessary following continuous use of the uniforms and accoutrements by persons and institutions, who have not been permitted to do so, GAF said.
Most importantly, it added, these measures are being targeted at impersonators and miscreants who go to all lengths to secure these uniforms, purposely for fraudulent and criminal acts.
A major concern to GAF is that, notwithstanding the continuous public education and warnings issued to the general public to desist from the unauthorised use of military uniforms, the trend rather appears to be on the increase.
This state of affairs is an outright contravention of the National Liberation Council Decree (NLCD)177 of 1967, which is still in force. This Decree in part states that; ‘no person shall wear or use any military uniforms, equipment, or accoutrements or other material unless he or she is a member of the Armed Forces of Ghana’,” a statement by the GAF said.
“It is based on this that personnel of the 4 Infantry Battalion in Kumasi recently rounded up some persons wearing different shades of military camouflage uniforms, captured in a viral video manhandling some civilians in the Kwabre South District. It later came to light that these persons were members of the District Assembly Taskforce who were carrying out duties for the District Assembly. Considering that they were dressed in military pattern camouflage uniforms, they were wrongly perceived to be GAF personnel thereby drawing GAF into disrepute. Aside the above, GAF has also picked up several impersonators in recent times and handed them over to the Police for prosecution.
“GAF has also noticed with dismay, the increased use of military uniforms by some private security personnel, musicians and other entertainers and consequently efforts are underway to halt the practice.
“It must be noted that besides the illegality of the use of the uniforms, accoutrement and equipment by these unauthorised persons or group of persons, others with criminal motives use them to impersonate and outwit unsuspecting members of public in order to perpetuate crime. Noting that these acts creates a sense of insecurity in the country and tarnishes the image of the military, GAF would not allow this situation to persist and will henceforth step up the arrests of these persons and deal with them drastically but in accordance to the due process of the law,” it stressed.
As part of GAF’s own internal measures, the issuance and sale of military uniforms and accoutrements to personnel have been streamlined and being coordinated by Units and the Service Headquarters’ through Service and Post Exchange Shops, upon proper verification and
identification of the personnel.
Consequently, military personnel who allow relations and friends access to their uniforms and accoutrements or engage in unauthorised disposal of such items, would be equally dealt with in accordance with GAF regulations and the laws of the country.
“The Ghana Armed Forces therefore seeks the cooperation of the general public to curb the use of military uniforms and accoutrements especially by criminally-minded persons. It is also advised that unauthorised persons including celebrities, desist from wearing military uniforms as it is prohibited under NLCD 177. Those who continue to violate this law would be arrested and taken through the due process of law.
“The Ghana Armed Forces once again wishes to assure the general public of its commitment to protect the citizenry at all times. It therefore requires the support of all to enforce these measures in the interest of the needed peace and security for Ghana’s socio-economic development.”