The Defence Minister, Mr Mark Woyongo, says all is set for construction work to start on the proposed 500-bed military hospital at Afari in the Atwima-Nwabiagya District.

The project is to help take off some of the work load and ease the congestion at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) ? a major referral facility, particularly during emergencies.

He said the ceremony to mark the official commencement of the job was only days away, and could happen anytime next month.

Mr Woyongo, who broke the news to the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu the second, at his Manhyia Palace during a courtesy call, said it would be ready for operation by year 2016.

Accompanying him was the General-Officer Commanding the Northern Command, Brigadier-General Joseph Boampong, and other high-ranking military officers.

He was in Kumasi on a working visit to the Command to interact with the officers and men and tour some military facilities.

The Minister spoke of government?s determination to adequately resource the Medical Reception Centres at the various garrisons to function properly.

He said given the crucial role the military played in ensuring the stability of the nation, everything would be done to address their needs to perform.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu gave high marks to the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) for professionalism, integrity and commitment to duty, noting that, the high sense of discipline among the officers and men had won international admiration.

?Your immense contribution to peace-keeping missions, humanitarian services and defence of our nation has been most commendable.?

The Asantehene urged government to pay more attention to the Atonsu Shoe Factory, operated by the military, to help achieve high level of production efficiency.

The factory produces boots for the security services. GNA

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