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Ghana: The Armed Forces In National Life
Country Study > Chapter 5 > National Security > The Armed Forces in National Life


Ghana has a rich and varied military history. The military traditions of the Asante and several other Ghanaian peoples dominated the pre-colonial era. During the British period, Ghana's military consisted of a modest army organized along infantry lines. At independence, Nkrumah expanded the armed forces to enhance the country's national prestige. The army grew in size and complexity, and the government established a separate air force and navy. This growth exceeded Ghana's national security requirements, however, and imposed an economic burden on the new state. In the decades since independence, Ghana has continued to maintain a comparatively large military force. By the early 1990s, it had become clear that the government would have to respond to popular demands for greater economic growth by reducing the size of the military establishment.

Data as of November 1994

Last Updated: November 1994

Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Ghana was first published in 1994. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on

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