Saturday, 02 March

Professionalism earns respect not uniform – MP on respecting men in uniform

Men in uniform

A Ranking Member on the Defence and Interior Committee of Parliament, Peter Lanchene Toobu, has negated claims for the citizenry to respect the military uniform.

According to the Wa West Member of Parliament (MP), it is the training of an officer that makes him or her who he or she is and not the uniform the officer is wearing.

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP from the Upper West Region said the statement by the Minister for Defence, Dominic Nitiwul, for the citizenry to respect the uniform was unfortunate.

The former police officer made this comment while discussing the levels of indiscipline in the military in recent times on the Ghana Yensom morning show hosted by Odeyeeba Kofi Essuman on Accra 100.5 FM on Monday, March 20, 2023.   

Mr Toobu argued that respect is earned so if a soldier exhibits professionalism as a result of his or her training, he or she will earn the respect of the citizenry.

"If a soldier is all the time misbehaving, how will such a soldier be respected?" he asked.

He stressed that officers get respected by the show of professionalism and integrity, not their uniform.

He said officers in recent times have thrown away professionalism and resorted to doing things their own way all because there is no meritocracy in the recruitment of officers into the military.

He cited the situation where one completes Senior High School with about eight As yet he or she is not admitted into the military because they do not know a top politician.

"On the other hand, someone who failed in all subjects is seen wearing the uniform," he bemoaned, adding that this will create suspicion in the minds of the citizenry.

For his part, the former Deputy Minister for Defence and New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Nkoranza North Constituency in the Bono Region, Derrick Oduro also argued that the uniform is important for the identification of officers in times of any eventuality.                     

"Professionalism is key in the affairs of the officer [also]," the retired military officer said

Source: Mensah