MAINTAINING THE “PRESS ON SPIRIT”-BRIEF HISTORY
In 1957 when Ghana attained independence, the Ghana Army comprised an Infantry Brigade of three Infantry Battalions, a Recce Squadron and ancillary units such as Ghana EngineersSquadron, Ghana Signal Squadron, Ghana Army Supply and Transport Service, Ghana Army Education Service, Ghana Army Ordinance Service, Ghana Army Medical Service, Ghana Ar my Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and the Ghana Army Pay Service. Over the passed 5 years, the ancillary units experienced expansion and additional reorganization in order to provide the newly independent country, Ghana with a suitable Army commensurate with national objectives which might not have been attainable by reliance on bequeathed colonial military structures. The expansion was completed in 1962 with the Ghana Army being established by an Act of Parliament and restructured into two Infantry Groups, the ancillary units, and the Military Academy and Training Schools.
In January 1969, the Common Services Establishment Committee was set up to establish a logistics brigade for the Ghana Army using the ancillary units. In October 1969, the ancillary services and units were grouped under the newly formed Support Services Brigade Group mostly for administrative efficiency and convenience rather than operational purposes. The Headquarters of the new Brigade located at the present location of General Headquarters Camp then, was made up of mostly troops from Army Engineers, who were deployed to assist the civil authority in building bailey bridges, air trips and houses as well as evacuation and resettlement of flood victims during the construction of the Akosombo dam. The first commander of the Headquarters was Col Sanni-Thomas who handed over to Col Coker Appiah in a month’s time.
The Support Services Brigade Group was under-implemented in May 1985 but was reactivated in June 1987 under the Army Headquarters and its Headquarters relocated to Medo Lines, Burma Camp. The units grouped under the Headquarters included 49 Engineer Regiment, 1 Mechanical Transport Battalion, Base Supply Depot (BSD), Base Ordnance Depot (BOD), Base Ammunition Depot (BAD), Armed Forces Printing Press (AFPP), Armed Forces Fire Service (AFFS), Base Workshop (B/Wksp), and Headquarters Ghana Military Police (GMP). The rest are 37 Military Hospital, Forces Pay Office (FPO), Armed Forces Central Band (AFCB), 5 Garrison Education Centre (5 GEC) and Headquarters Support Services Brigade (Camp).
By November 1996, the Support Services Brigade Group was reorganized, removed from the command of the Army Headquarters and placed under the General Headquarters (GHQ) with the General Headquarters (Camp) and all Directorates under the General Headquarters placed under the Formation. The units under the Formation included GHQ(Camp), HQ GMP, Def Sig Regt, FPO, 37 Military Hospital, Defence MT Battalion, BOD, BAD, BSD, Base Workshop, AFFS, AFPP, DPC, AFCB, Ghana Armed Forces Institute (GAFI), 5 Forces Movement Unit (5 FMU), Base Engineer Technical Services (BETS), 5 GEC, Armed Forces Museum, Armed Forces Signal Training School(AFSTS), Armed Forces Secondary Technical School (AFSTS) and HQ Support Services Brigade Group (Camp). Presently, the units under the Support Services Brigade Group are: General HQ (Camp), 49 Engineer Regiment, HQ Ghana Military Police, Defence Signal Regiment, Forces Pay Regiment, Defence MT Battalion, Base Ordnance Depot, Base Ammunition Depot, Base Supply Depot, Base Workshop, Armed Forces Fire Service, Armed Forces Printing Press, Armed Forces Central Band, Ghana Armed Forces Institute, 5 Forces Movement Unit , 1 Forces Movement Unit , 5 Garrison Education Centre, Army Signal Training School and HQ Support Services Brigade Group (Camp).
Besides normal regimental routine duties, the Formation has made tremendous strides in the organisation of seminars and cadres for troops. Notable among them are the introduction of Young Soldier’s course and Regimental Sergeant Majors’(RSMs) Seminar for RSMs under the Formation to sharpen the skills of troops and rekindle their professional bearing. Cadres on Drill and Duties and PROMEX as well as, Formation Padre Hours, monthly Brigade walks and weekly physical training have all inured to the benefit of the Formation. Continually, personnel from the Formation excel among their counterparts in the Ghana Armed Forces due to the regime of seminars and cadres instituted. The September – December 2013 Drill and Duties course 2, saw the Overall Best student coming from the Formation.
Sgt Ghansah Evans of 49 Engineer Regiment took the overall best student in the July 2015 Drill and Duties course. The Brigade also won the trophies at stake during the 2014 boxing competition as well as the 2015 Ex –Tiger’s Path competition.
The female soldiers who make up the majority in the Formation are not left out in any activity held in the Brigade. During training sessions, exercises and courses among others, the females and their male counterparts are of no difference. The splendid performance of the female Special Forcescontingent from the Brigade that featured during the 58th Independence Anniversary Parade confirms this.
FORMATION SLOGAN AND ANTHEM
Press on – Regardless
Regardless – Keep pressing
Support – Sure to deliver
Support – Keep the promise
Support – All is well
Press on regardless, we strive for success. Support Services Brigade we are dependable. We are dynamic in all our endeavours. Support Brigade we are always together. Refrain: Hail Support Brigade. First in and last out in all operations. Regardless keep pressing, support sure to deliver. Support keep the promise, support all is well.