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General News
Crashed Chopper was traded for prez jet? 1/21/2007
Addo Kufuor’s Chopper In Fatal Crash
What was meant to be the final flight of the remains of the first Ghanaian Air Force Commander and former Chief Of Defence Staff (CDS), Air Marshall Otu, to Adukrom, his hometown, for his internment, turned out to be a shocking disaster.

The M-17 which was ferrying the body, and which is one of the four choppers Defence Minister, Kwame Addo Kufuor, traded the Gulf Stream II presidential jet for, crashed at about 1.00 p.m. on Friday, January 12, 2007, as it was about to land at the Adukrom Methodist JSS Park where the family of the late CDS had gathered in readiness to receive the mortal remains of their illustrious son. Even though the Armed Forces has announced that it is investigating to get to the bottom of what might have caused the chopper to crash, sources in the Military hierarchy say that the Adukrom accident most poignantly brings to the fore the need for the Ghana Airforce to do everything possible to stem the rate at which its very senior and experienced pilots are leaving the force. The Military sources complain of how the Ghana Airforce has lost lots of its very senior and well trained pilots and that this phenomenon is impacting on its operations.

The Military sources lament what appears to be a deliberate attempt by the Kufuor-led NPP to downplay the importance of the Airforce since John Agyekum Kufuor fortuitously became the Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces because of their believe that former president Rawlings made the Airfoce very “powerful” for his personal benefit, and how that callous agenda has resulted in the Airforce haemorrhaging its personnel badly.

These concerns appear to confirm recent reports by the Enquirer newspaper that the nation’s armed forces, in this case the Airforce, have been losing experienced personnel either through voluntary retirement or just outright AWOL (Absent Without Official Leave) in the last few years.

Conservative unofficial figures estimate that at least 20 experienced pilots have dropped their uniforms since 2001 and are flying commercial aircrafts on the West African sub continent and other parts of the world.

Considering the fact that it takes quite a colossal amount of our scarce resources to train a single pilot, it becomes very clear the extent to which Kwame Addo Kufuor and his brother are causing very huge financial loss to the state.

Dr. Kwame Addo Kufuor has time without number, as he seeks to take over from his failed senior brother as the leader of the NPP, asked people to judge him by his record as Defence Minister and not because he is a junior brother of the current president.

Indeed, if Dr. Kwame Addo Kufuor is to be judged by his record as Defence Minister, especially in relation to the haemorrhaging that is taking place not only in the Airforce but in the Army and Navy (especially the army), there is no way any Ghanaian who is alive to his/her nationalistic responsibilities would ever allow Kwame Addo Kufuor to become leader of the NPP let alone become president of Kwame Nkrumah’s Ghana.

It would be recalled that the chopper that was involved in the near-fatal accident when it was about to land, was said to have got its propeller caught in a mast belonging to Milicom Ghana Limited, operators of tiGo cellular phone network, dropped to the ground with the mast and within five minutes after the 18 people on board crawled out through the ramp its ramp, burst out in flames charring the dead body and the casket in which it was contained to ashes.

The survival of the thirteen family members and five crew members is considered to be nothing short of a miracle as any delay on their part to crawl out of the crashed chopper could have resulted in a monumental disaster for the country.


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