General News of Monday, 2 October 2017
An all Air force contingent of the Ghana Armed Forces, has taken over guard duty for the next three months at the Flag Staff House.
The 87 member Air Force Contingent takes over from the Navy contingent which has been in charge of guard duties at the Presidency for the last three months.
The change of guards ceremony, was witnessed by the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, Service Chiefs and other officials of the Presidency.
Guard changing or Guard Mounting is the process involving new guards exchanging duty with the old guards. This is an old tradition inherited from the British during the period of colonialism.
The guard which mounts at Buckingham Palace is called, ‘The Queen’s Guard’ and is divided into two detachments; The Buckingham Palace detachment and St. James’s Palace detachment.
The significance of the Guard Changing in all cases include; ensuring alertness and readiness at all times, ensure availability and serviceability of all equipment at all times, assessing the strength of the soldiers for duty, constant fortification of the duty point amongst others.
In the Ghana Armed Forces, Guard Changing / Mounting is a daily occurrence in every unit.
The Presidential Guard changing at the Flagstaff House is similar to the Guard Changing ceremony at the Buckingham Palace.
Instituted on the 5th of May 2013, it is conducted with 20 each of old and new guards from different Services/ Regiments, Escort contingent, Corps of Drums and the National / Regimental Colours, under the command of a Captain (Army) or it equivalent from the other Services.
It is a replica of the guard changing system at the General Headquarters Command Gate.
The Change of Guards ceremony usually has school children joining the President at the Presidency to witness the ceremony.
At today’s ceremony, Pupils from Osagyefo Leadership International School, Fountain of Youth International School and participants of The Spelling Bee (TSB), Ghana, joined the President for the ceremony.