The governing National Democratic Congress? electoral gains over the years at the various garrisons in the country is likely to drop considerable in next year?s election following simmering disquiet among the troops and the ongoing agitations and protest by ex-military officers over unpaid allowances and gratuities.

wpid-benjaminkumbuor.jpgAlthough the retired military officers are aware government has released monies due them to the Ghana Armed Forces, they are said to be worried about the snail pace at which the NDC government is liaising with GAF to release their monies.

Some of the affected ex-military officers who picketed at parliament house last week told The aL-hAJJ that, they least expected to be ill-treated under an NDC government that they have supported and voted for all these years.

?I?m amazed that this is happening to us under an NDC government?but for our professional background, some of us would have been playing lead roles in the party. We love the party and we have voted for it all these years. Over the years, the NDC has won majority votes in the garrisons, and I expected that they will reward us by making sure we are treated well. I appreciate the fact that the Finance Ministry has released all our monies to GAF, but that is not enough, the Defence Ministry should make follow ups and make sure our monies get to us,? a worried retired military officer told this paper on condition of anonymity.

Another of his colleague added ?this development is causing serious problem amongst our members. We are not happy at all, and if care is not taken the NDC will suffer for a crime that it did not commit. If the Defence Ministry does not take steps to ensure the guys at GAF release our money, the development can affect the chances of the NDC in the barracks in the next election.?

Some retired soldiers last week picketed at Parliament House to press home their demand for GAF to release their unpaid allowances and gratuities.

The aggrieved ex-soldiers say they have not received their full emoluments despite writing countless petitions to the Ministry of Defence and the GAF. They also complained about disparities in the payment of their gratuities.
Spokesperson for the group, WO1 John Teye, disclosed to the media, after the protest match and presentation of a petition to Chairman of Parliament?s Defence Committee that, they will not hesitate to come back to Parliament if their concern is not addressed.

He said information available to the group indicates that the GAF has intentionally refused to release the monies although the Finance Ministry has released all the monies for their allowances and gratuities.

?We are reliably informed and we have documents to prove that government through the ministry of finance paid the monies to the Ghana Armed Forces, so our issue is not with government but the force.

?If they deny that what we are saying is true, we are challenging them to make public the letter written to them by the ministry concerning the pension pay?, he added.

Although the ex-military strongmen have applauded government for fulfilling their part of the bargain by releasing all monies due them to GAF, they say ?that is not all, they should impress on GAF to give us our monies because government would be the ultimate loser if this thing continuous not GAF.?

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