Ghana

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Republic of Ghana

The Republic of Ghana is a small nation on the coast of West Africa, once home to a number of Akan-speaking tribal kingdoms, the most well-known of which was the Ashanti Empire (1670 to 1902). Europeans first made contact with the indigenous people of Ghana in the 15th century, when the Portuguese came there seeking to trade for gold, ivory and slaves. They would be joined in the mid-16th century by the Dutch, and by English, Danish and Swedish traders by the mid-17th century. The name Gold Coast was imposed on the region by the British, who made it a protectorate in 1874 after the last of the Dutch withdrew from their trading forts. Britain clashed with the Ashanti over the course of three wars, finally ending with the Third Ashanti-British War (1900-1901), which firmly established British colonial rule. Following the First World War, the region formerly known as German Togoland was divided by the League of Nations and placed under protection of England and France. British Togoland would ultimately merge with Gold Coast in 1956, and in March of 1957 gain full independence as the new Republic of Ghana. French Togoland would later become the modern Republic of Togo.

The Ghana Armed Forces consist of the Army, Air Force, Navy, National Police Service, Palace Guard (Presidential Guard), and the Civil Defence, and is considered one of the most professional military forces in Africa today. Ghana has enjoyed stable relations with its neighbors in West Africa, and is committted to a number of peacekeeping efforts with the United Nations, including missions to the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUC), Liberia (UNMIL), Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL), and Lebanon (UNIFIL).

Camouflage Patterns of Ghana

  • At some point, possibly in the 1980s, elements of the Ghana Air Force (and possibly other branches of service) employed a copy of the British DPM camouflage. Few photographs exist documenting its usage, so we can only speculate as to how prolific the use of DPM was, and for how long it was utilized. With its strong historic connection to Britain, the use of DPM makes logical sense.

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  • Ghana has traditionally outfitted its troops in khaki or olive green, even on peacekeeping operations. Since the late 1990s, however, some personnel have deployed in m81 woodland pattern BDUs donated by the USA.

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  • Another woodland variant imported from Asia is seen here.

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  • Prior to the present era, some members of the Ghana Police Service have worn a tiger stripe camouflage design with a blue colorway. This is similar to some commercially issued patterns, and may in fact be produced from the same drawings.

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  • Since 2007 or thereabouts, the Ghana Immigration Service's Border Protection Unit has worn a "leopared print" camouflage design with a mostly green colorway, seen here. The pattern reminds us of a similar one developed in the 1970s for other African nations, such as Zaire and Chad.

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  • Members of the Ghana Police Service deployed with the African Union (AU/UA) forces in 2012 were observed wearing a pixelated pattern with a blue/purple colorway, and have since been documented wearing the pattern in general service. This pattern is in fact a copy of the KA2 pixelated design developed for the Jordanian Police, and appears to replicate the details of that pattern, down to the miniature outline of the Jordan embedded into the design itself!

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  • The Ghana National Fire Service also has its own camouflage design, being a variation of the standard woodland scheme with an orange/black colorway.

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  • Another non-military entity that wears camouflage is the Ghana Prison Service. Evidence has been found documenting at least two patterns worn by this agency, a "desert lizard" pattern (similar to that worn by Mauritania and a "desert woodland" pattern.

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