Al Aziz Mosque to host burial service for JH Smith tomorrow
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Accra: The Burial Service of Lieutenant General John Henry Smith, the former Minister of Defence, has been scheduled to take place on Saturday December 23, 2023, at the Al Aziz Mosque at Burma Camp in Accra.

The burial was announced in a statement by Victor Smith, a sibling of the lieutenant general, on behalf of the family.

JH Smith passed away on Tuesday, December 19, 2023, at the age of 78 after suffering from an undisclosed illness.

According to the statement, he will be given a full military burial as a Muslim.

The late Lt Gen. JH Smith became Minister of Defence under the tenure of President John Atta Mills’ term of office from 2009 to 2013.

He was also a former ambassador of Ghana to the United States under the John Mahama administration.

Born on January 9, 1945, in Takoradi as Joseph Henry Smith, he attended Achimota Secondary School from 1959 to 1963.

He got enrolled as an officer cadet at the Ghana Military Academy and was commissioned second lieutenant on October 16, 1965, into the Ghana Army Engineer Corps.

He became the Commandant of the Military Academy and Training School at Teshie, Accra, in 1993.

From 1993 to 1996, he was the Commander of the Second Infantry Brigade Group, now known as the Northern Command, with headquarters at Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana.

While in this position, he was appointed Special Task Force Commander to restore law and order in Northern Ghana between January and September 1994 during the Konkomba and Nanumba conflict.

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In 1996, Smith served as the Company Commander of the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF) in Egypt. He was appointed Chief of Staff of the Ghana Army in 1996 by President Jerry Rawlings. He held this position till 2001.

Smith is the only Army Commander to have commanded three formations including two Infantry Brigade Groups. He retired from the military in February 2009 after 39 years.

The late Smith had five children. He was married to Douha Smith.

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