The Vice-Chairman of the Defence and Interior Committee of Parliament, Collins Owusu Amankwah believes claims by the Minority of an alleged secret recruitment into Ghana’s security services is only a diversionary tactic.
Addressing the press in Parliament last week, the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, said the government has undertaken a recruitment process without giving the required notice.
He described these alleged recruitments into the army, police service and immigration service as being “clandestine” in nature.
But in Parliament today, Monday, Mr. Amankwah contended that the claim by Haruna Iddrisu has no basis, especially when there has not been any fresh recruitment into the services.
“It smacks of hypocrisy and double standards on the part of the Minority Leader. He knows that the process has been very open and transparent, to the extent that he knows that those who are being called for training are Ghanaians who qualified and he admitted in his claims that some qualified but he wants the due process to be followed. His claims were based on hearsay. He himself admitted that he was told. And I think we should be serious in this country. In the wake of COVID-19 where people want to see that we are maximising the welfare of our people, we should not reduce the arguments to hearsay.”
“It could be a diversionary tactic because when Interpol issued a publication on red notice, Minority Leader wanted to divert the attention of Ghanaians, so he just pushed out this story just to divert the public view on the Airbus saga,” he said to the media in the House.
The MP further indicated that recruits currently in training are persons who are back from home to resume training that was truncated due to COVID-19.
“Ghana Immigration Service, for instance, 84,000 people applied and out of that number, over 41,000 were shortlisted. And for them to do justice to the shortlisted applicants through financial clearance through the Ministry responsible for Finance Ministry is what they are doing. So they are calling them in batches. It is same with the Ghana Armed Forces and Ghana Police Service. The emphasis is on the backlog, which ought to be absorbed and based on that, they are calling them in batches,” he stressed.
This is not the first time the Minority has accused the government of secret recruitment of persons into security agencies.
Last year, the Ranking Member on the Defense and Interior Committee, James Agalga, said the government is recruiting cronies into the police, prison services, among others without recourse to the laid down procedures.
Prior to that, the National Democratic Congress flagbearer, John Dramani Mahama had claimed that the government was also training party thugs at the Asutsuare Military Training Camp ahead of the general elections in December 2020.
Security agencies not recruiting
As part of efforts to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus in the country, the Ghana Police Service suspended training of its recruits in March 2020.
In a statement, the leadership of the Ghana Police Service said “recruits training activities have been suspended. Recruits other than the final/passing out squad have been released to go home until further directives.”
The Ghana Armed Forces, in April, also stated that it is not conducting any enlistment or recruitment exercise.
In a statement, it said it “accordingly cautions the general public to refrain from giving patronage to the fake advertisements and other falsified documents, including press releases purporting that GAF has begun 2020/2021 recruitment and enlistment”.