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US Military Base Rawlings kicks against Ghana hosting US troops

According to Rawlings, accepting to host the foreign troops could lead to foreign domination on the economic and social lives of Ghanaians.

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Jerry Rawlings play

Jerry Rawlings

Former President Jerry John Rawlings believes the hosting of foreign troops in Ghana could make the nation “stateless” and has kicked against government’s decision to host troops from the United States of America.

According to him, accepting to host the foreign troops could lead to foreign domination on the economic and social lives of Ghanaians.

READ ALSO: US Military Base: Ghana will never know peace if... - Security expert warns

He said Ghanaians may be fond of Americans but are not ready to live together with foreign troops in the country.

Government, as part of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed earlier in March 2018, is actively pushing for the indefinite hosting of military personnel and equipment from the US.

The Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul, who laid the agreement before Parliament for consideration on Tuesday, argued that Ghana stands to benefit so much from the agreement.

 

Many Ghanaians, including political commentators and security experts have kicked against the idea of hosting US troops in the country, saying it may expose Ghana to terrorist attacks.

Ex-President Rawlings – who is himself an ex-Flight Lieutenant – is the latest to add his voice to the matter and has revealed that he is not too enthused by the whole idea.

According to him, Ghana already has enough foreigners dominating their economic and social lives and that hosting foreign troops in the last thing the citizenry needs.

READ ALSO: Opinions: How social media reacted to US military base agreement

“Ghanaians may love Americans, but not to the extent of living with foreign troops on such a scale. Ghanaians have enough foreigners dominating their economic and social life. Adding foreign troops to the discomfort would be a bit too much. Ghanaians have felt stateless before in my lifetime. Let’s not go there again,” Rawlings said, as quoted by Citifmonline.

As part of the agreement tabled before Parliament, the US military will be exempted from paying taxes on equipment they will bring to Ghana.

The troops will also be allowed to set up a telecommunication system on Ghana’s radio spectrum for free, whiles Ghanaian authorities will also be restricted from accessing the facilities given to the US officials when they begin using them.

Another aspect of the agreement is that the foreign troops will be permitted to wear their uniforms, carry weapons, and use their foreign documents including drivers’ licenses in the country without restriction.

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