Military Cooperation How parliament was under tight security as MPs approve hosting of US military

Police deployed tanks and other heavy weaponry to ward off demonstrators form the Economic Freedom Fighters.

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Parliament was under tight security on Friday as Members of Parliament considered the Ghana-US military cooperation agreement.

Police deployed tanks and other heavy weaponry to ward off demonstrators form the Economic Freedom Fighters.

READ MORE: NDC MPs boycott approval of hosting US military

The pressure group had march to parliament to persuade their MPs not to approve the deal which will give the US military "unimpeded" access to Ghana.

The unarmed protesters, wearing red, were blocked from entering parliament, a scene last seen in military rule.

Many security analysts decried the military pack as a bad deal, urging MPs to renegotiate the deal as it was not in the interest of Ghana.

Parliament Friday night approved the deal in a vote boycotted by the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).

"We will not be part of the process to endorse this deal in its current form because it is not in our national interest,” minority leader Haruna Iddrisu said.

The military deal gives “unimpeded” access to the US to deploy troops and military equipment in Ghana.

READ MORE: By hosting US military, Ghana departs from non-aligned foreign policy

It gives tax exception to US military contractors and requires Ghana to provide the US with runway for US military operation.

"United States forces shall be responsible for the operation and maintenance, construction, and development costs of agreed facilities and areas provided for the exclusive use of United State: forces unless otherwise agreed," it said.

In return, the US will invest $20 million in the Ghana army and police service as well as host joint-military exercises together.

Interior Minister Ambrose Dery and Defence Minister Dominic Nitiwul argued that the deal was in the best interest for the nation, citing growing terrorism in countries bordering Ghana.

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