General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketiah has justified his presence in Parliament on Friday when debate on the 2022 budget was supposed to be finalised.
According to him, he did no wrong in sitting in the public gallery of the Parliamentary Chamber even after the Speaker directed all Ministers who are non- MPs to exit the Chamber since he was in the House to observe proceedings for the day.
“I came to sit in the public gallery. I wasn’t speaking to anybody. I was just sitting down observing things. So how do you see me and just say ‘Asiedu Nketia is in the Chamber, so must leave’ when other members of the public gallery were still in the gallery?” he told Joy News after he exited the Chamber.
Asiedu Nketia’s presence in Parliament on Friday, November 27, 2021, generated a lot of drama.
The NDC General-Secretary, who is also a member of the Parliamentary Service Board visited the House to observe proceedings but his presence was disapproved by the Majority Caucus.
Prior to the vote to approve the 2022 budget, the Finance Minister appealed to the Speaker to allow him to further engage the leadership of Parliament over the budget. But the appeal was turned down by the MPs through a voice vote.
The Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, then challenged the Speaker’s ruling and called for a division. A division is a form of voting from MPs whilst ensuring that all non-MPs are cleared from the lobby.
In view of that, the Speaker directed that all non-MPs will have to vacate Parliament for that form of voting to take place.
At this time, the Finance Minister was in the chamber, yet was not a Member of Parliament. His presence was opposed by the Minority MPs.
They contended that Ken Ofori-Atta was a Minister, hence, his ineligibility to be in the chamber.
After noticing that the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress was in the public gallery, the Majority also demanded the removal of Asiedu Nketia from Parliament.
Whilst the NDC MPs remained calm, their colleagues on the other side created a chaotic scene, banging on the table and accusing the Speaker of bias.
Minutes later, the leadership of the Majority side staged a walkout. The Speaker then suspended the proceedings.
Several minutes later, the Speaker returned and asked if there was a quorum for business to continue. After establishing that proceedings could continue, he put out the question again – whether the appeal from the Finance Minister should be considered.
After the Minority had their way through a voice vote, he therefore proceeded to the main agenda of the day; the approval of the budget.
Alban Bagbin subjected the approval of the budget to a voice vote and the Minority had their way.
Speaking on whether or not the Speaker was right in ordering the Finance Minister to exit the Chamber, Asiedu Nketiah stated that once the Majority had specifically requested for a division, it was only right that everyone in the Chamber who was not an MP exited on the orders of the Speaker.
“There’s a procedure for division in the standing orders and that needed to be followed. If the Speaker ordered that those Ministers who are not members of Parliament must leave upon the ringing of the bells for a division by the Majority themselves, the orders must be obeyed.
“When there was a voice vote, did you see the Speaker walking out any Ministers? But if you specifically call for a division then the procedure for division in the standing orders must be followed; it means that the lobbies must be cleared and anybody who does not have a vote must leave,” he added.
Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia is charging government appointed heads of various public institutions to play a major role in trumpeting of government’s achievements to the public to defuse propaganda of their political opponents.
According to him, the heads of entities are better communicators because they are abreast with facts due to the data they have in their possession which should be made known to the public to counter the deliberate misinformation and propaganda of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
He believes that government communication should not be left to party communicators alone as head of the state institutions have crucial role to play to dispel misinformation by their opponents.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of a 3-day retreat for board chairpersons, heads and deputy heads of government institutions at Nkwatia-Kwahu on Sunday, Dr. Bawumia told the heads of state agencies that they should make conscious efforts to also come out and speak.
“You’re at the forefront of the communication in this country and for this government. I know that we can also talk about party communicators and so on but I don’t see any better communicators than the heads of these institutions. You’re the best communicators this party can have because you’re possessed with all the information.
“You know, sometimes you see our party communicators struggling in some issues because they just don’t have the data and they’re confronted in the studio and they don’t have the data to response to issues. But our opponents are very good in propaganda. They’re very very good you know. They’ll just throw out falsehood and if you’re not able to counter it, it takes the aura of truth. But you’re in the best position to counter this propaganda because you’ve the data.
“So, I want to basically emphasis that we expect you to let the people know all the good works that are taking place in your various entities,” Dr. Bawumia stated.
The Vice President cited an instance that after his recent public lecture at Ashesi University where the NDC came out and said John Mahama has made all the investment in fibre optics that’s why the NPP government is benefiting from John Mahama investments.
He noted John Mahama has not done any investment in the fibre optic space which has yielded results in the ongoing digitisation of the country since 88.4 percent of the fibre optics networks were licensing of fibre optic companies were done by President Akufo-Addo govenrment per data available at the National Communications Authority (NCA).
“I’m sure you heard what they said that they’ve invested in fibre optics and now we’re benefiting from it. I said wait a second, I can’t remember any investment of John Mahama in the fibre optics space.
“So, I called NCA and I said give me the data on fibre optics in Ghana. It was very interesting when the data was provided. Currently, NCA has provided 6 fibre optics licensing since Ghana begun, just 6 fibre optics licensing. The first was provided under President Kufuor, which was Vodacom. Of all the 6, 5 was provided under the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the NPP.
“So under the NPP since 2017, we’ve licensed entities for a total fibre optics network in Ghana that is being licensed by the government is 6,343 kilometres that’s the total. What the NPP has licensed since 2017 of the 6,343 is 5,610 that’s 88.4 percent of this data and that is data that is in possession of us. We’ve to make that data clearly known,” he mentioned.
The Vice President wondered how Nana Addo’s government would be benefiting from John Mahama investments in the digitisation space when the NPP government invested majority in the fibre optics network of the country.
“How can we provide 88.4 percent of the fibre optics network of Ghana and you say digitisation is riding on your investment when we even started the whole process in 2017? So the data is in your respective entities and you come out and let the people know when they’re issues. Don’t leave it to party communicators alone to do the battle, you’ve the data so let’s help in educating the people otherwise propaganda will take over,” Dr. Bawumia added when asking the heads of state agencies to response to misinformation of the public by their political opponents
The general secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) says the Speaker of Parliament has been passing comments that sometimes are strictly unnecessary
John Boadu, the general secretary of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) says the Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin is only a beneficiary of a position he never worked for; the reason for some of his comments in recent times.
According to him, comments from the Speaker of Parliament indicating that he (Alban Bagbin) has the “powers to remove the president but the president cannot remove him” is unfortunate and serves no purpose.
“The Speaker as we all know is only benefitting from what he didn’t work for and as a result, he has been passing comments that sometimes are strictly unnecessary. For instance, he passed a comment that he has the capacity to impeach or remove the president and the president cannot remove you (Alban Bagbin) is totally unnecessary because he forgets that as a Speaker, he doesn’t even have a vote.”
“So, on what basis is he saying that or he’s going to supervise a distorted proposal for impeachment or what? I think it’s time he recognises that he’s benefitting from something he didn’t work for,” he stated.
On the suspension road tolls, Boadu stated that although Parliament has the sole responsibility to enact or suspend laws, the government also has the responsibility to institute administrative measures to curb any form of confusion and conflicts that will emerge as a result of the policies of the government.
“With the removal of road tolls, I think strictly and technically speaking, it is Parliament that enacts and suspend laws so nobody is lost to it. But in the interim as we wait for Parliament, particularly when the government has put in a proposal of a reduction or zero-rated tolls, for instance, it is necessary for the government to put in administrative measures in other not to create confusion. Because if the minister had not operationalised the non-collection of tolls at that time, there’ll have been a lot of confusion at our toll booths,” he said.
Cessation of road tolls
The Minister of Roads and Highways, Kwasi Amoako Attah directed the cessation of road tolls effective Thursday, 18 November 2021.
This followed an announcement by the government that abolished all tolls on public roads and bridges in the 2022 Budget Statement.
However, the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin directed the Roads and Highways Minister to reverse the directive on the cessation of road tolls until Parliament provides appropriate legislation.
According to the Speaker, the minister lacks the legal mandate to issue such a directive and has suggested that the minister initiates legislation under a certificate of urgency to seek the approval of the House
Vice Presidential candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Dr. Bawumia has lambasted the Mahama led government for its incessant penchant to tax almost every and anything.
He has observed that if the government finds a way, it will even impose taxes on the air Ghanaians breathe.
The renowned Economist while addressing students and lecturers of the E.P. College of Education, Amedzofe in the Volta region, Wednesday pointed out that the current slump in the economy had been occasioned by the government’s mismanagement, corruption and incompetence.
Dr Bawumia noted that in the government’s desperate bid to find a way out, it has resorted to imprudently imposing taxes on every conceivable item.
“In response to the reckless management of our country’s economy and resources, which has led Ghana back to the doorsteps of the IMF, the government resorted to imposing taxes on every conceivable item in attempt to raise resources to fill the deep hole their incompetence and corruption had dug.”
“In their desperation to fill the hole they have dug, the government imposed taxes on condoms, cutlasses, savings; today they are imposing taxes on pensions and allowances. Anything they think they can impose taxes on, they are imposing taxes on it – even if they think they could impose taxes on the air we breathe today, they would have imposed taxes on it,” he said.
Dr. Bawumia noted that as a result of the desperation to raise revenue, chiefly because the government’s reckless borrowing and corruption had created a huge hole, the government was failing to see the dangers their unquenchable thirst for taxes were spelling for the economy.
“In so doing, they do not even understand that this is actually hurting the economy but they are so desperate for revenue that they are not even thinking about the economy”, he said
A former Deputy General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Koku Anyidoho has told members of the NDC who are insulting Dr Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings, a daughter of the late founder of the party, Jerry John Rawlings, for asking the leadership of the NDC to bring back her mother Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings.
Zanetor who is also the Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle made the appeal at the commemoration of the one year anniversary of the late former president at the party’s headquarters in Accra on Friday November 12.
According to Zenetor, for the NDC to win the 2024 elections , her mother must rejoin the party.
“We cannot do it alone. It would take all of us. You don’t have to have a title or be an executive. And I would like to use this occasion to also express my appreciation to the leadership of the NDC, to the rank and file, for the support and the show of love. And so, on behalf of my mother, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, my siblings and myself, we say Thank You.
“I would like to use the opportunity to ask that as we remember the old man, thinking that he ll not pass what he did, let us recognize the fact that we don’t know when our last day would be, let’s make amends with those we have wronged. On this particular occasion, I’d say the thing that nobody wants to say: Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings is an integral part of this party. Let us do what we have to do bring her back.”
Nana Konadu broke away from the NDC to form her own party, the National Democratic Party, NDP which has so far contested two national elections.
In a tweet, Mr Anyidoho said “Let nobody claiming to be a supporter of NDC, dare insult Honourable Ezanetor Rawlings, for asking the Party to, reach out to, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings. United we stand; divided we fall. The spirit of JJ Rawlings lives o.
He added “Those who don’t appreciate history, have no Understanding of the paths of life. Asomdwehene Atta-Mills, worked hard to bring Reform Party & DFP back into the fold of NDC to win in 2008 & 2012. NDC, bring back NDP for the sake of the future. Pride must be swallowed ooo! Ayoo.”
THOSE WHO DON’T APPRECIATE HISTORY, HAVE NO UNDERSTANDING OF THE PATHS OF LIFE. ASOMDWEHENE ATTA-MILLS, WORKED HARD TO BRING REFORM PARTY & DFP BACK INTO THE FOLD OF NDC TO WIN IN 2008 & 2012. NDC, BRING BACK NDP FOR THE SAKE OF THE FUTURE👏. PRIDE MUST BE SWALLOWED OOO! AYOO🙏 PIC.TWITTER.COM/IMXBKU0U4O— Samuel Koku Anyidoho🇬🇭 (@KokuAnyidoho) November 15, 2021
The Deputy General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Peter Boamah Otokunor, has said the party is open to discussing the return of Mrs Konadu Agyeman Rawlings if she applies to rejoin the party.
Speaking on Morning Starr, Monday 15th November 2021, the Deputy General Secretary in-Charge of Operation stated that Article 8 of the NDC’s constitution spells out how one can join the party.
According to him, the wife of the founder of the NDC would not be prevented from joining the NDC if she had a change of mind to rejoin just as she willingly resigned.
“The right to association is an inalienable right that has been bestowed to every citizen of this country and with such rights, its commission or omission can only be exercised by that person. So as we saw with Madam Konadu leaving the party, it was in exercise of her right that is why for now she is not a member of NDC and belongs to a different party.
“If she has realized that her action and her commission haven’t helped her in achieving her political or any objectives that she might have, it is just fair she comes back to the competition of the NDC. Relying on the republic of Ghana Constitution to commission, she can go through the procedure of becoming a member of the NDC. She has to apply and the leadership will consider the application and just follow the procedure,” he added.
The first born of the late former President Jerry John Rawlings, Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings, has made a passionate call to the leadership of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to make amends and bring back her mother, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings to the party again.
Addressing a gathering to commemorate the first Anniversary of the passing of the former president on Friday, November 12, 2021, Zanetor indicated conflicts are part of humans but there is also reconciliation at a point.
“I want to use this opportunity to ask that as we remember the old man who we never expected to pass when he did, let’s make amends. Let us approach those we have wronged.
“At this juncture I would want to say what no one wants to hear. Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings is an integral part of the party. Let us do all we can to bring her back. In every family there is conflict, but there are also elders who will mediate the conflict. We are calling on our elders, this is the time. We don’t know what tomorrow holds, but if we want victory to rescue the people of Ghana from their current situation, let us do what we have to do,” she requested.
Yaw Buaben Asamoa, Director of Communications for the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has slated former President John Dramani Mahama for speaking to issues as if he has not run affairs of the country before.
According to him, Mr Mahama sometimes portrays the character of someone yet to ascend to the highest office of the land; forgetting that he was once a Vice-President, an acting President and later President of Ghana.
Speaking on Okay FM’s Ade Akye Abia Morning Show, the NPP Communications Director pointed out that as President, Mr Mahama had the chance to create the new regions to bring development down to the grassroots level but lacked the will and know-how to execute it.
” . . He (John Mahama) has no right to speak ill of President Akufo-Addo with regards to the creation of the new regions when he could not help the people with their request for new regions.
“He sometimes talks as if he has not been a President of this country before,” he chided.null
Mr Buaben Asamoa urged the former President to acknowledge the effort of President Akufo-Addo to go through the legal process and commit resources to create the new regions as he promised the people in the new regions.
“After creating the new regions, the President didn’t go to sleep but he invested funds to make the new regions see the same development as the old regions. The President has moved a step further to spreading the various sectors to cover all the other districts other than the district capital to ensure that development reaches out to all corners of the regions,” he argued.
“We have to remind former President Mahama about all the feats of President Akufo-Addo as he [Mahama] moves around with his ‘Thank You’ tour, saying something bad about the new regions that he couldn’t create while in office as President,” he indicated.
The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has urged Ghanaians, especially politicians, to inculcate moral values and high standards in the quest to build a society underpinned by a common set of aims and beliefs.
He has also charged politicians, in particular, to emulate the Akufo-Addo government by backing up their claims of fighting corruption through deeds, not just words, to make Ghana a better place.
Speaking at the 76th Graduation ceremony of the Trinity Theological Seminary, Legon on Saturday, 13th November 2021, Vice President Bawumia said in today’s world, it has become important that countries deliberately develop a society of persons who are not merely prepared for jobs but are also set for ongoing growth in all aspects of life to make a difference in the world.
“As Ghanaians, we could build a distinct moral identity and constitute a reference point for people of other nations. We must endeavour, both in our public and private lives, to do what is morally right and eschew what is morally evil. A high sense of morality is “sine qua non” of good citizenship. That much, not material wealth, not prosperity religion, is what we need in order to build a good society” he emphasized.
Zeroing in on corruption, Vice President Bawumia said several pronouncements have been made in the past indicating a desire to fight it, but these have largely failed, hence the decision by the Akufo-Addo government to digitize the process of accessing government services and reduce the human interface, which lends itself to corruption.
“One of the major moral cankers facing our society is that of corruption. It is one of the things that every political party talks about but very little has been done about it in the past. We have killed people in the past and it has not worked. We have passed many laws and they have not been enforced. We have appealed to people’s sense of morality and it has not worked.
“When we came into office, one of the approaches we took to address the issue of corruption is to put in place systems that eliminate corruption through digitalization. Through digitalization, we have been able to tackle corruption at the Passport Office, Ports, GRA – TIN is now the Ghanacard number, SSNIT, NHIS, you can purchase electricity credits using your mobile phone. Every public sector worker will be uniquely identified by the Ghanacard number – no more double salaries.
“The Motor Insurance database, containing the data of all the insurance companies, has ensured that now we don’t have fake insurance certificates. You can dial a short code and check the insurance status of a car before you board. The data of the Births and Deaths Registry is being digitized, to take out fake birth certificates. And now, with the Ghana.Gov platform, you can access all Government services and make the necessary payments without any major human interventions, drastically reducing corruption.”
“We are building a new system to underpin the economy,” he explained. “A system that makes for greater transparency, promotes accountability and efficiency in every aspect of public interactions. It is a system that minimizes incentives to pay bribes and opportunities for corruption in the delivery of public services.”
Touching on the theme for the celebration, “faith-based education, morality and nation-building”, Dr Bawumia indicated that individual and national, concerted efforts would be required to rekindle the core societal values of the country.
“We need to work consciously on the nation’s value systems to enhance the moral temper of the country to help accelerate national development. Our values are very important, and we should hold on to them.
“As data indicates, a majority of Ghanaians are religious. Therefore, religion does not only have a profound influence on our moral values and life but also on the development of our country.”
217 graduates received recognition for their hard work, ranging from Certificate in Ministry (16), Bachelor of Theology (55), Master of Arts in Ministry (91), Master of Divinity (41), Master of Theology (11) and Doctor of Philosophy in Theology (3).
President Nana Akufo-Addo’s promise to protect the public purse has become an “illusion”, the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference has observed.
Its president, Most Rev. Philip Naameh, at this year’s plenary assembly of the association in Wa, capital of the Upper West Region, said: “Though poverty stares us in the face, it appears lost to those with power”.
“The expressed commitment of the president of the republic to protect the public purse – a promise that citizens welcomed – seems to be an illusion now”, Most Rev. Philip Naameh noted.
He wondered: “Are those managing the public purse not concerned about [the] waste and misapplication of resources that belong to all Ghanaians?”
“Can this be referred to as irresponsible use of power or the lack of compassion and empathy?” he asked.
The cleric said “those who are entrusted with power that comes from our collective will must know that what they do with that, shapes what we all will become in the future”.
A post-election report by the Centre for Democratic Development-Ghana’s Afrobarometer in August 2021 said while Ghanaians are split in their opinion on the Akufo-Addo government’s ability to ensure that rule of law is upheld, the majority (62 per cent), however, are not confident in the ability of the president and his government to protect the country’s financial resources and curb corruption in the next four years.
Meanwhile, President Nana Akufo-Addo said in May this year that his government has achieved a lot in terms of fighting corruption.
In an interview with CNN on Monday, 3 May 2021, President Akufo-Addo said he was content with the progress he has made so far since, in his view, Ghana’s anti-corruption ranking has “gone up several notches.”
“Am I satisfied that we’ve been effective? I will say yes”, the President answered a direct question.
“A lot has been done, and it is reflected in Ghana’s growing position and rankings of corruption in the world”, he noted.
“We’ve gone up several notches since I came into office because we are dealing with these matters at the basic level,” explained the President.
According to him, Ghana’s anti-corruption institutions “were very poorly resourced” prior to his assumption of office.
“We can talk all we like about corruption and make all the wonderful statements but if the instruments at your disposal for dealing with it are weak and blunt, you will get no result,” Mr Akufo-Addo noted.
Concerning the forcing out of Auditor-General Daniel Domelevo, the President said: “There’s a time for retiring which is prescrib
The three-time Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) began his nationwide tour to thank Ghanaians for the votes he polled in the December 7, 2020 elections in August, five months after his petition challenging the results of the polls was dismissed.
Though he eventually lost to incumbent Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), a second successive defeat to his successor since beating him in 2012, the former President decided to thank voters for their support.
He began his tour in the Upper East Region specifically on Tuesday, August 17 and has since visited 15 regions of Ghana.
The Greater Accra Region will be the last for the former president.
Coincidentally, Mr Mahama beat Nana Akufo-Addo in this Region as he polled 1,326,489 votes to beat the other 11 contenders.
Mr Akufo-Addo polled 1,253,179 in the Greater Accra Region.
Meanwhile, Mr Mahama is making room for a limited number of guests for his ‘ThankGhana’ event on Wednesday, November 10.
TEIN noted that the Vice President is now shifting the goalposts by, in their view, moving away from the politics of economics to be focusing on digitalisation.
A statement signed by the National Deputy TEIN Coordinator, Mr Ekow Djan said “While in opposition we were made to believe he was the Economist who had the solutions to all our challenges. Today, he’s no more interested in Economics rather, Information Technology (IT).
“Dr. Bawumia never mentioned “Digitalization/Digitization” while a Running Mate in opposition— he was always on Exchange rate, Borrowing, Revenue generation. What has become of the dollar to cedi rate? Is he not aware his administration has borrowed more than any administration? Our Dept to GDP ratio is close to 80%.
“And he still has the effrontery to speak in this country? Well, the Ghanaian voter is discerning. Our Economy is nothing to write home about.
“Probably that’s the more reason why he’s abandoned Economics and conferred onto himself “Honorary Minister for Communication and Digitization”.
“We could only wish him well in his new office. Upon all the unfulfilled promises, Vice President Bawumia has once again chosen to promise unborn babies to issue them Ghana Cards. Governance is a serious business— [Former] President Mahama will always be vindicated.”
The Vice President during the lecture said there was a link between economy and digitalisation for which he keeps touting the efforts by the government to build a digital economy.
He said among other things that “There is a lot to say about these but today, I want to focus my remarks on how we are transforming Ghana’s economy through digitization because it is important that we highlight the critical nature of digitizing the economy and how it underpins the reforms that the citizenry expect of government.
” We can only build a vibrant modern nation if we have strong systems and institutions that work. Otherwise we will be stuck in a vicious cycle of rhetoric and underdevelopment.
“Under the leadership of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo- Addo, we have focused on pursuing digitization as part of our economic strategy because the Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us and we must be part of the modern world. There is a growing body of empirical evidence that illustrates the capacity of digital technology to create jobs, significantly boost productivity, increase income and support wealth creation.
“The World Bank in a 2020 report observed that well-functioning digital economies are expected to achieve faster growth, offer more innovative services and create more jobs. The World Economic Forum’s Global Information Report estimates that “an increase of 10% in a country’s digitization score fuels a 0.75% growth in GDP per capita”.
“It is therefore clear that going forward, countries that fail to digitalize their economies are likely to be uncompetitive in the emerging global digital revolution.”
He added “On coming into office, we moved quickly with the issuance of biometric national ID cards (The Ghanacard) to the population. The Ghanacard project was initiated by President Kufuor but abandoned for 8 years.
“The card has world class features. It captures 10 fingerprints as well as the iris of individuals. It is also consistent with the ECOWAS standards and bears the ECOWAS logo. It is compatible with any reader which is compliant with EMV contactless communication protocol.
“So far, 15.5 million people have been enrolled on the Ghanacard by the NIA and most of the population will be enrolled by 2022. NIA will open an additional 291 offices tomorrow across all districts and regions to complete the exercise.
“The issuance of the Ghanacard has provided Ghana with a database that will be the anchor for all transactions in the future, providing unique identity to all individuals.”
He avers that it is only hard facts and data that can counter their efforts, adding that these figures are available thanks to the governing New Patriotic Party’s record in development which is way ahead of the NDC.
“Our record will always be superior to the record of the NDC. The NDC is very good at propaganda. They are specialized in that, but the only way to counter the propaganda is with facts and data. They are very afraid of facts and data.”
Bawumia was speaking on Sunday, October 31, 2021, at the end of a three-day orientation programme held for newly-appointed Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives, MMDCEs, in Accra.
He added that with the development efforts that the government was undertaking nationwide, it was the responsibility of MMDCEs to disseminate information to the local levels where they are the political heads.
By so doing, they will scuttle the robust propaganda machinery of the NDC and also put the NPP in good stead to win the 2024 General Elections.
“This coming election in 2024 is going to be fought at the local level, it is not going to be fought in Accra, so you know the projects, the NDC cannot sit in Accra and lie about projects when you in your regions and districts can tell the people what we have done.
“When you do that, they can go and check and the NDC cannot come back with propaganda. We have to be proactive and tell the people,” Bawumia added.
This is not the first time the Veep is taking potshots at the NDC, he serially accused the party of incompetence prior to becoming Vice-President and has also been highly critical of then-President John Dramani Mahama.
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has said the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) must blame itself for its loss of the 2020 general elections since it failed to assign competent agents to police all the 38,000 polling stations across the country.
In his view, the NDC and its leadership must take the full blame for their defeat and stop pointing accusing fingers at the Electoral Commission.
The General Secretary of the NPP, Mr John Boadu, made the comments in an interview with Kwame Appiah Kubi on Accra100.5FM’s morning show Ghana Yensom on Friday, 29 October 2021.
According to him, the leadership of the NDC, during the last election, was so incompetent that they assigned national officers “who went to drink tea and biscuit” at the national collation centre otherwise known as the Strong Room at the Electoral Commission’s headquarters in Accra.
“What was the NDC, as the largest opposition political party, supposed to do when it got wind of the fact that some ballots have allegedly been stuffed ahead of the elections?” he asked.
Mr Boadu further questioned why the NDC failed to raise some of these concerns during the hearing of the 2020 election petition at the Supreme Court.
“Is it a case that the NDC wanted the NPP to prove their claims in court for them?” he wondered.
Mr Boadu said it was shameful that the NDC does not want to concede 10 months after the last elections but rather accusing the EC of not doing its work.
He reminded the EC not to waste its time on the “frivolous claims of the NDC.”
“As a party, all we know is that we have won an election and we are doing everything to reorganise the party’s base for the 2024 elections,” he said.
The NDC has accused the EC of rigging the 2020 polls for the government.
Meanwhile, the EC has invited the police to probe a claim by former President John Mahama that the election management body thumb-printed one million excess ballot papers and stuffed them in favour of the NPP.
John Dramani Mahama, the 2020 flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has hinted that the party will do everything possible to make the 2024 general elections transparent, fair, and clean.
He said, “the party would not allow anybody to cheat them in the 2024 general elections, and that they would also not do anything to cheat any party.”
Mr Mahama said these at the Asogli Palace in Ho in the Volta region, when he paid a courtesy call on Togbe Afede XIV, the Agbogbomefia of Asogli State as part of his ‘Thank you’ tour.
He noted, “my ‘do or die’ comment meant the deployment of processes for transparency and fair elections far from the use of violence”.
The former President said he and the NDC were highly indebted to the people of the Volta region for their continuous support throughout the years.
Mr Mahama said the party appreciated the support of the chiefs and the people of the region and would not take it for granted as he uses Togbe Afede to reach out the chieftains in the region.
He said though the region had been split, looking at the 2016 election, the votes they had in the current Volta region went up by 113,000 votes and, “this was despite all the intimidation during the voter card registration, closer of the borders and invasion of the region by military.”
He said the NDC got 84.4 per cent of votes in the Volta region, which was the highest votes than any other region in the country.
Mr Mahama said the region had done a lot to propel the fortunes of the NDC to the height it was today and assured the chiefs that when the party comes back to power in 2024, the region would have its fair share of the national cake.
He described as a palpable false that the region did not see any development under the party when they were in power, saying, the region had witnessed massive socio-economic development ranging from health, education, water, electricity, roads among others.
The former President commended Togbe Afede for his role in enhancing the development of the country, citing the Asogli power plant, which he said played a crucial role in supporting the country during the power crisis.
He lamented the loud silence of the National House of Chiefs on topical issues prevailing in the country upon his exit indicating traditional leadership as the last bastion of hope for the country and must not disappoint.
Togbe Afede XIV, was grateful to the former President and his entourage for the visit and recognising his contribution to the development of the country.
He said the development of the country required a collaborative effort, therefore, calculated steps should be taken to discontinue the winner takes all approach.
Togbe said the outbreak of the novel coronavirus had exposed the vulnerability of Ghana and other countries as the economies were not strong to support the citizenry in the crisis.
“That is why there is the urgent need to focus on the development of our country. We have done enough politics over the years, it is time the focus be shifted to our developmental needs,” he said.
The former President was accompanied by his 2020 running mate, Professor Jane Naana Opku-Agyamang, Mr Asiedu, Nketia, General Secretary of the Party, Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, National Chairman of the Party among others.
The Director of Elections of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah has refuted claims by the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission that the 2020 polls was free, fair, transparent.
In a statement, Mr Afriyie Ankrah also dismissed reports by Madam Jean Mensa that the polls saved the country some GHC90 million despite the challenges of COVID-19.
“An EC as an unbiased umpire after an election will be candid, sober, reflective, admit shortcomings, challenges and difficulties so as to put in place mechanisms to ensure a better performance in subsequent elections; but if in the face of overwhelming evidence of very serious anomalies and discrepancies in the 2020 Elections, Madam Jean Mensah can describe these Elections as one of the best in the history of this country, then God help Ghana.”
“If anyone thinks that the NDC will sit down and allow themselves to be brutalised and murdered in the 2024 elections as it happened in the Ayawaso West Wuogon Bye-elections and the recent 2020 elections, that person should have his/her head properly examined,” the statement added.
Speaking to members of the ECOWAS Parliament at Winneba on Wednesday, Jean Mensa said described the 2020 polls as the must successful in Ghana’s history.
According to her, the elections last year were so successful that the BBC described it as boring. Addressing the high-level seminar of ECOWAS parliament in Winneba, the EC Chair stated, the recently released census results vindicate the number captured during the compilation of the new voters’ register.
“Indeed, our elections of 2020 were solely financed by the government of Ghana. I am happy to note, that this reduced the cost of our election by 41% compared to 2016 notwithstanding inflation and price highs and the fact that we incurred additional cost owing to the COVID-19 protocols we deployed throughout the election.
“We cut the cost per voter from 13 dollars per head in 2016 to 7 dollars 70 cents per head at the time when the cost of elections is rising world over. Needless to say, these were no easy feat, it took the herculean effort of our entire team and the helping hand of the almighty God to establish these achievements. We were met with many challenges but we surmounted most of them and those we could not overcome we learnt from them”.
Read the full statement by Mr Afriyie Ankrah below:
RESPONSE TO THE PRESENTATION MADE BY THE ELECTORAL COMMISSIONER MADAM JEAN MENSAH AT THE HIGH-LEVEL REGIONAL PARLIAMENTARY SEMINAR OF THE ECOWAS PARLIAMENT IN WINNEBA- GHANA ON WEDNESDAY 19TH OCTOBER, 2021
Our attention has been drawn to recent pronouncements by the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission Madam Jean Mensah at the just ended High-level Regional Parliamentary Seminar of the ECOWAS Parliament in Winneba. The E.C chair made outright false and fallacious statements aimed at misleading the participants at the just ended programme.
The EC Chair, falsely claimed that the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary elections were historic, credible and cost-effective. These assertions by the EC Chairperson are once again a manifestation of her arrogant posturing and arbitrary attitude towards the entire electoral process in Ghana. It is indeed shocking that Madam Jean Mensah would describe the 2020 elections as the best in the history of this country. The utterances are very significant because they have serious consequences for the stability and sustenance of our democracy.
One would expect that an Electoral Commission as an unbiased umpire after an election will be candid, sober, reflective, admit shortcomings, challenges and difficulties so as to put in place mechanisms to ensure a better performance in subsequent elections; but if in the face of overwhelming evidence of very serious anomalies and discrepancies in the 2020 Elections, Madam Jean Mensah can describe these Elections as one of the best in the history of this country, then God help Ghana. An election that saw 8 people losing their lives, innocent Ghanaians murdered in cold blood????
By coincidence, Mrs Jean Mensah was addressing an institution, which, for the sake of peace in the ECOWAS sub-region, has made specific treaties to prevent violent conflicts emanating from elections and to ensure peace in the region. A cursory look at events prior to, during and after the elections, point to the fact that Mrs Jean Mensah had violated both our National laws and various aspects of the ECOWAS treaty obligations.
First of all, the EC breached an Important ECOWAS Protocol
Article 2 Clause 1 of the ECOWAS Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance (A/SP1/12/01) unequivocally states that no substantial modification shall be made to the electoral laws of a Member Country in the last six (6) months before an election. This was one of the arguments that Opposition Parties and numerous CSOs and Governance Experts raised during the discussions on the need for a new Voters Register. The contention of the Opposition and many large sections of the Ghanaian Society was that, in the previous year, Millions of Ghana Cedis had been spent on upgrading the Old Register. Therefore, having spent such millions approved by Parliament to buy this new equipment, there was no need for a New Register. Madam Jean Mensah and her EC ignored all these sounds admonishings and went ahead with her procurements in the face of protestations by well-meaning Ghanaian citizens.
It is amazing that after blatantly disregarding their protocol, Madam Jean Mensah would stand before the same ECOWAS to allude to these false assertions.
Secondly, the EC made a deliberate effort to weaken IPAC and destroy the culture of consensus-building that has characterized deliberations at IPAC since its inception in 1993
Madam Jean Mensah and her Electoral Commission have completely destroyed the spirit of consensus and mutual respect that existed at IPAC and has turned IPAC into a forum where she dictates what she likes, which is often in line with what her appointing authority the NPP Government wants and would not listen to any suggestion whatsoever from the main opposition Party.
For the first time in the history of the EC, Political parties were not involved in the drafting of the C.I (127) as was the practice in the past, where the initial processes and consultations were all done together with the Political Parties at the Committee level before it was brought to the Plenary and subsequently to Parliament. It is therefore not surprising that there were numerous flaws and errors in the C.I (127) and it had to be returned to the EC on more than one occasion.
It is instructive to note that a Deputy Commissioner of the EC, Dr. Bossman Asare is on record to have said publicly that the NDC is an existential threat to Ghana’s democracy.
Madam Jean Mensah in order to bypass IPAC and to have her own way, set up a so called Eminent Advisory Committee. The NDC cautioned this committee that the motives for setting up that committee was to use them to validate some of the ills of the EC but they did not listen. One wonders where these Eminent Advisory Committee members are now and what they have to say about all the anomalies that occurred during the Elections, including the murder of 8 innocent Ghanaians.
A hasty, flawed Voter Registration Exercise
This exercise had numerous issues such as multiple registrations, duplicate serial numbers, faulty equipment, missing names on the register etc. and for the first time in our history, unprecedented violence, massive bloodshed and even deaths.
Minister of State Hawa Koomson and her thugs openly fired shots at innocent people at various polling stations, young Silas was killed in Banda and many others suffered various levels and degrees of injuries but nothing has been done to any of the perpetrators of these heinous crimes.
EC Caused Financial Loss to the State and did not Save Ghana any $90million dollars.
Madam Jean Mensah also claimed that she saved the country $90 million. She is the only one who knows the basis of this assertion because as far as we are concerned there has not been any independent audit of the finances of the Electoral Commission. Within the context of her claims on expenditure and savings, several CSOs led by IMANI Ghana came out with documentary evidence showing that the procurements she carried out lacked transparency and even cited her for corruption due to bloated figures. Until we have independent scrutiny of her accounts, she cannot claim to have saved any money for Ghana.
Moreover; Parliament had approved tens of millions of Ghana cedis for the EC to upgrade existing infrastructure at the time. What has happened to all that equipment that she spent tens of millions of Ghana cedis on.
Her unsubstantiated and unverified claims are akin to a student writing an exam, generating her own marking scheme and subsequently claiming she got 100% in the exams. How ridiculous!!!
Printing of Illegal Secret Ballot Papers
For the first time in the history of Presidential and Parliamentary Elections in Ghana, Political Parties (specifically the NDC) was not given the ballot statistics required for Party Agents to track the number of ballot papers to be printed for each Polling Station before printing began. The NDC had to call a Press Conference to drum home these issues for the right thing to be done. Subsequently, the Party managed to get this information from the various Printing houses.
Also notable of concern is the printing of excess ballots. Ballots were printed in excess of the required 5% of total registered voters in each polling station to cater for spoilt ballots. Furthermore, the NDC discovered over 1 million ballot papers that were secretly printed for Ashanti Region alone. When the officials were queried, they unintelligently replied that they were meant for run-offs. Further checks led to the discovery of excess secret ballots for other Constituencies in Greater Accra (Okaikoi North, Ablekuma South, Korle Klottey, Tema East, Adenta, Madina, Ledzokuku, Krowor, La Dadekotopon, Ableuma Central). All these ballots were subsequently destroyed in the presence of the Security Services and there is sufficient video evidence to support these claims.
Use of Illegal Statement of Polls Form 8B.
After the Special Voting exercise, it was realized that the approved Form 8B by Parliament was altered by taking out the column C6 which serves the purposes of ballot accounting to ensure transparency. The EC Chairperson was then directed by the Minister of National Security and Chief of Staff in an emergency meeting on the 2nd of December, 2020 to address this illegality but she did not heed to their directive. She rather replaced that column with the so called Stamp, just a day before the main elections.
During our Pink Sheet auditing process, the Party observed that some of these forms either had no Stamps or were not filled, while others were not signed. All these created loopholes and made it difficult for Agents to do proper ballot accounting which paved the way for various forms of manipulation and ballot stuffing.
The strange Introduction of Regional Collation Centres
The introduction of the Regional Collation Centres created a lot of opacity in the process, as corroborated by the EU 2020 elections report on page 41. We are convinced beyond any shred of doubt that the creation of that layer gave room for the manipulation of figures and this was manifested in the hasty and arithmetically incoherent and mathematically implausible results she announced.
Multiple Results declaration
If there was any record or history that Madam Jean Mensah and the EC has achieved, it is in the record of being the first Electoral Commissioner to declare results which initially totaled under 100% and after the subsequent so-called correction the total exceeded over 100%. This is the first EC that has declared six (6) different results with multiple corrections which were also wrong and to date, Ghanaians still do not know the actual or right figure/result she used to declare the so called winner. This is unprecedented in the history of Ghana’s electoral system.
If there is anything that is the manifestation of the perversity, absurdity and blatant disregard for the rule of law and due processes, it is evident in the way the people of SALL were treated. The EC Chairperson gave several assurances to the people of SALL that they were going to be involved in both Presidential and Parliamentary elections, only to issue an administrative fiat 24 hours to the Elections to disenfranchise tens of thousands of qualified Ghanaian Voters from exercising their franchise. The parochial purpose of this unpatriotic act was just to enable Mr. Peter Amewu to win the Hohoe Parliamentary seat for the NPP, and in the face of such a blatant aberration and bare face illegality, she has the guts to describe this election as a perfect one?????!!!!
As rightly put by Legal Practitioner Prof. Kwaku Asare, “SALL is the cardinal sin of the 4thh Republic”.
Electoral Violence and intimidation
When confronted with numerous cases of electoral violence in the 2020 general elections, Jean Mensah’s response was that they did not occur at the polling stations and therefore the Electoral officers could not be held responsible. Indeed, nothing could be further from the truth. Almost all the cases of violence and murder occurred at the collation centres. Are the collations centres not part of the electoral architecture? Is it not the Electoral Commission which is in charge of the elections? She made similar statements during the violence in Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election. That indifferent attitude and nonchalant posturing is what emboldened these thugs to go and master their art of murder, thuggery and violence and subsequently resulted in the murder of 8 innocent Ghanaians.
With this same posturing if care is not taken we may record even more acts of murder and violence in the 2024 Elections.
The blood of all these 8 innocent citizens is surely on the head of Madam Jean Mensah and Nana Akufo Addo, the ultimate beneficiaries of these heinous crimes; so she should not come out in October (10 months after the Elections) and just say in a blasé manner that the Police should investigate. Madam Jean Mensah never acted like a mother. Would she have behaved this same way if these victims were her relatives? This indifferent attitude will only open way for more violence in 2024 if care is not taken and she has to be called to order by all well-meaning citizens.
In any case if the elections were as free and fair as she claimed and she had nothing to hide, why did she refuse to testify in court and had to hide behind technicalities when she was required to give account of her stewardship during the Election Petition? Any truthful person would have taken advantage of that opportunity to come into the dock and vindicate him or herself as was done by her predecessor Dr. Afari Gyan during the 2013 Election Petition.
Madam Jean Mensah’s posturing and attitude are a threat to our Democracy and the earlier she is called to order the better. If anyone thinks that the NDC will sit down and allow themselves to be brutalized and murdered in the 2024 Elections as it happened in the Ayawaso West Wuogon Bye-elections and the recent 2020 Elections, that person should have his/her head properly examined.
In conclusion, we call on all well-meaning Ghanaians to rise up and speak out now to save this dear nation of ours!
Mahama has expressed regret that the EC appears to have taken a stance against the NDC, although it is expected to be neutral.
Former President and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) flagbearer for the 2020 general election, John Dramani Mahama has asked the Electoral Commission (EC) to work towards redeeming its image in the next general polls in 2024.
Mahama said the EC under the leadership of Jean Mensa superintended over the country’s worst elections in 2020 and so will have to work hard to repair the poor image it has created for itself.
Speaking in an interview with Volta Region-based Global FM, as part of his ‘Thank You Tour’ of the region, John Mahama expressed regret that the EC appears to have taken a stance against the NDC, although it is expected to be neutral.
“During the Ayawaso West Wuogon violence probe, they asked her [Jean Mensa] about violence in the election, and she said they didn’t see any violence. She has a mindset towards rigging the election against the NDC. You have an EC who says the NDC is an existential threat to Ghana’s democracy, and yet she is still at the Commission and making decisions with respect to fair elections.”
“They conducted one of the worst elections [in 2020]. I don’t have the power to remove them, and it is likely that they will be the EC commissioners for 2024. They should use 2024 to redeem themselves,” he added.
John Mahama further disclosed the NDC is continuing with its stakeholder engagements on its electoral reform proposals ahead of the 2024 elections.
“We set up a committee to come up with proposed electoral reforms. We came up with proposals which we have presented to the EC, and we have done some activations. We’ve met the religious groups and various groups and trying to explain to them why if these proposals are carried out, it will lead to a better electoral outcome in Ghana than we’ve seen in the past,” Mahama said.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said the decision taken by his predecessor, John Dramani Mahama, to build the Komenda Sugar factory, without first establishing a sugarcane plantation, betrays every principle of construction.
“It is like building a house, and say you are going to start from the roof before you have a foundation. How does the house get built? You going to start from the roof, when you haven’t built the foundation?” President Akufo-Addo asked.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “You would think that every industrial activity would begin with, first of all, what you want to do, what you want to produce. Once you identify that, then clearly, your next step has to be what are the inputs, what are the things that you need to be able to feed into your factory, to get to your outputs and you are therefore to be satisfied when you start producing your production, those inputs are there.”
But this, he said, is not John Mahama’s way of doing things, as “he will rather build the roof, once the roof has been built then he will come down and then build the foundation. You know that a house built on that principle will collapse, just as Komenda collapsed.”
The President made this known on Monday, 18thOctober 2021, during an interview on Eagle FM, at the commencement of his 2-day working visit to the Central Region, in response to comments made by the former President last Friday.
It will be recalled that during an interview on Cape FM, former President Mahama stated that “I’m not that foolish to set up a factory and have no plan for the provision of raw materials. I knew what the vision was. It was to get the raw materials first”, despite having not set up a single sugarcane plantation to serve as a raw material source for the factory.
Information from an October 2017 Technical Audit Team, made up of experts from the academia, industry, and independent sugarcane consultants, revealed that a test run was never completed before the Komenda Sugar Factory was commissioned in May 2016, due to the unavailability of sufficient sugarcane for the test run.
In addition, the factory, on commissioning, was not in a position to produce the required refinedsulphurlesswhite sugar due to the absence of 35 component parts/units, which were not fully installed before the test run including for melt clarification, vertical crystallizers, molasses weighing system, bagasse compressor and a dosing system. The Effluent Treatment Plant had also not been constructed at the time of the commissioning.
President Akufo-Addo also revealed that a preliminary assessment of the value of the factory revealed that the factory had been overvalued to the tune of some US$12 million.
The Report of a Forensic Audit has been submitted to EOCO, which has written to the Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Justice to conduct further investigations for possible prosecution.
Towards the revival of the factory, the President revealed that a Strategic Investor, ParkAgrotechGhana Limited, had been selected as the preferred Strategic Investor for the Komenda Sugar Factory, and their recommendation was approved by Cabinet.
However, negotiations between the Transaction Advisor (Price Water House) and the Strategic Investorhasbeen unduly prolonged due to a number of demands made by the Strategic Investor, as well as the effects of the emergence of COVID-19 Pandemic, which restricted consultations between the investor and the Transaction Advisor.
With the delays in concluding negotiations between the Transaction Advisor and the Strategic Investor, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, after given the required notice, terminated the negotiations with the Strategic Investor on 1stSeptember 2021 fortheirfailure to fulfil the conditions precedent to the offer made to them.
The President indicated that the services of the Technical Partner with expertise in the sugar industry has been engaged to manage the technical operations of the factory. In addition, traditional authorities in Komenda and the adjoining districts have been engaged to acquire large tracts of land for sugarcane plantation.
President Akufo-Addo was expectant that the Komenda Sugar Factory will commence commercial production in the first quarter of 2022
John Mahama met the NDC party stakeholders this afternoon as part of his Thank You tour in the Central Region. He reacted once again to the 2020 election petition. Mahama compared and contrasted the 2012 election to the 2020 election petition.
Mahama explained that the judges were unjust. He recounted how the then Chief Justice, Madam Georgina Theodora, excluded herself from the panel of judges who presided the 2012 election. Mahama disclosed that he was shocked when he saw the current Chief Justice, Justice Kwesi Anin Yeboah on the panel.
Mahama added that when he saw the remaining six supreme court justices who presided the hearings, his heart skipped a beat. He revealed that he lost hope in the justice system at that particular instance. He stated boldly that he was not surprised at the consistent unanimous 7 votes.
• Former president Mahama kicks against new Agyapa deal
• Ghana won’t be able to pay its debts if government’s trend is not halted, Mahama
• The Akufo-Addo-led government introduced the Agyapa deal to help leverage Ghana’s gold royalties
Plans by government to re-introduce the Agyapa royalties deal have been opposed by former president, John Dramani Mahama, who insists the government is mortgaging the entire wealth of the country.
According to him, the deal is inconsiderate as government is invariably putting the future of the youth at risk.
“They [Akufo-Addo government] are mortgaging Ghana for everything. They have sold everything for loans. Now they don’t have anything to sell anymore. It is our gold that is left, that is the Agyapa they want to do.
“Because they see that they’ve sold the utensils, they’ve sold the chairs in the hall, the bed in the bedroom has been sold, now they are looking for the next item to sell. They have settled on the windows to sell. That is our gold, which they want to sell this time. They want to use that to go and collect over one billion dollars,” he lamented in an interview on Cape 99.3FM.
He said even though the government has benefited and accrued the most revenue from Ghana’s resources, the country has nothing to show for it.
According to a citinewsroom report, the former president said that the Akufo-Addo-led government wants to mortgage the 10% stake it receives as gold royalties for loans to spend today.
“Even though the ESLA bond we brought was supposed to be for five (5) years, today, the last ESLA bond they did, they have extended it to between 20-30 years. It means you and I, our children and our grandchildren will continue paying the loan until beyond 2030. GETFund has been mortgaged for the next 15 years. This means all contributions we pay for GETFund will only go toward paying loans and not for anything else,” he explained.
The 2020 National Democratic Congress presidential candidate added that “Our children will pay and pay and pay but won’t be able to finish paying. Our grandchildren will take over from them and continue paying the debts.”
He said the country will get to a point where it cannot pay its debts if the trend the government is setting is not stopped.
The woes of the Agyapa royalties deal were compounded by a risk assessment conducted by former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu after widespread criticisms by stakeholders who insist it was not in the best interest of the country.
The deal which was introduced by the Akufo-Addo government to help leverage Ghana’s gold royalties was suspended after these.
Former President John Mahama has said his government had plans of establishing a sugar cane farm around the Komenda sugar factory to provide the raw materials for production but that part of the project has been ignored by the Akufo-Addo government since taking office in 2017.
He told Cape93.3FM in an interview in the Central Region during his Thank You tour on Friday, 15 October 2021 that his vision for setting up the factory was to cut down on the almost $300 million spent annually to import sugar into Ghana.
“Phase I of the project was to build the factory and with phase II, the government of India gave us another $24 million for sugar cultivation and the out-growers”, Mr Mahama explained to Ohene Kwame David.
“When this government came, they said the sugar factory wasn’t their priority and, so, they didn’t apply for the $24 million and, so, they left it and the factory is just sitting there”, he bemoaned.
According to the 2020 flag bearer of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), the second phase of the project was designed to provide the raw material for the factory to make it self-sustaining.
“Do you think I’m a fool to build a factory and not make provisions for raw materials? I’m not that foolish. I did economics in the sixth form”, Mr Mahama pointed out.
“So, I knew what the vision was: get the factory first and, so, when we start producing, we’ll have a processing plant”.
“So, it was one of our priority projects”, he added.
He said: “There’s about 3,000 acres of land at Komenda, so, we planned doing a nucleus farm to feed the factory with raw materials and use the remaining balance of the $24 million to buy sugar from the out-growers in the area.”
“We’ll give them the planting materials because our sugar cane variety is very thin compared to the very think hybrid variety which has a lot of sugar in it”, he noted.
“So, the factory would buy the sugar cane from the out-growers”, he said.
“This government forgot about the second part”, he said, emphasising that “the Komenda Sugar Factory project has two parts: the plant and the sugar cane growing but they forgot about the second part, that is why the factory is sitting there idle and now they want to privatise it”.
“But even if you privatise it, you still need the support of the farmers to grow the sugar cane”.
“If we come back into government, by the grace of God, and they have not sold the factory yet, it’s a factory that can work to produce a very good percentage of Ghana’s sugar requirement and provide the youth in the area with jobs”, Mr Mahama said
Director of Communications of the NPP, Mr Yaw Buaben Asamoa noted that Mr Mahama’s posture does not edify the sacrifices of Ghanaian voters who defied the existence of the coronavirus to exercise their franchise during the polls.
His comments come after Mr Mahama has attempted to discredit the work done by the Chair of the Electoral Commission (EC) Jean Adukwie Mensa in the 2020polls.
Mr Mahama said that he will score Mrs Aduwkei Mensa F on how she conducted last year’s elected.
“2020 was Ghana’s worst election. If I was marking her, I would have given her an F. She is marking her own paper after examination so she can give herself any mark she likes.
“Tell me which election in Ghana was ballot papers printed yet one million ballot papers were found elsewhere… We didn’t witness this under Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan. She [Jean Mensa] knew there was ballot stuffing,” he said as part of his thank you tour.
His comments come after Mrs Mensa has expressed pride in the process and outcome of the December 7, 2020 elections of Ghana, recommending same to other West African nations.
She said Ghana’s latest election has become a case study for most advanced democracies in the world that they are ready to take a leaf or two from it.
“To the glory of God, I am pleased to say that Ghana held an election in December 2020 that prove the story of elections in our sub-region can indeed be an inspiration.
“That our story as West African states has been one that brings hope to our youth and light to the coming generations and that we can provide best practices the most advanced democracies of the world can learn from. Yes, we can!”
She described the elections as “historic” in many ways.
“I humbly refer to Ghana’s 2020 elections as historic for the transparency, the credibility, the cost-effectiveness, the high turn-out and the peaceful conduct that characterized it.
“So orderly, so methodical, so calm were the polls on the 7th of December, 2020 that BBC could find no other way to describe our elections than boring.”
Addressing a press conference in Accra on Friday October 15, Mr Buaben Asamoa who is also a former lawmaker for Adenta said “Only losing candidate Mahama and his cabal in the NDC continue to deceive themselves about the outcome of the 2020 elections . The heart-warming record of achievement that the conduct of the elections chalked deserves better from the one who seeks to lead the country coming next elections.
“In fact, his posture on the election does not edify the sacrifice of Ghanaian voters who queued in defiance of covid-19 to register and vote. Often, the same breadth, he reminds Ghanaian families of the pain of losing loving ones during post votes collation by mischievously referring to the regrettable deaths .
“President Akufo-Addo is on record as saying that not a drop of Ghanaian blood is worth exchanging for electoral victory and the steps he took against vigilantes literally ensured them the most peaceful voting process ever. In the 2020 elections we didn’t hear anything about vigilante groups, the BBC described the elections as boring, as the electoral commissioner has said.
“True leadership will not focus on the unfortunate and painful situation for political gains to the detriment of national peace of mind . In any event, former President and candidate Mahama has a very poor record in terms of political violence. He is the one who brushed aside the infractions of the Talensi by-election when guns were flowing about including the vehicle of his party’s National Chairman.
Gyamfi said on Metro TV’s One On One show which aired on Monday (October 11, 2021), that the party’s vigilance at the polling stations was far from satisfactory.
The NDC’s failure to be vigilant and the connivance of the Electoral Commission and the governing New Patriotic Party, Sammy Gyamfi believes led to the defeat the party recorded.
He however assured that lessons have been learned and that the NDC will be extra vigilant at the polling station in 2024.null
Reiterating John Mahama’s ‘do or die’ comment, Sammy Gyamfi said that the NDC will activate all legal ballot protective measures during the 2024 elections.
“But for the fact that we made certain mistakes which the NPP capitalized on with the help of the Jean Mensa-led commission, we would have won power. I believe that we could have been more vigilant at the polling station where I believe a lot of ballot stuffing took place. That is why we are saying that we’ve learned from our mistakes and we are going to be extra vigilant in 2024. It’s going to be do or die.”
Sammy Gyamfi also downplayed suggestions by Vice President Bawumia that the party played the tribal card in the 2020 elections.
He defended that the party executed an issue-based campaign that was devoid of personal and tribal attacks.
“I don’t know how anybody can accuse the NDC or John Mahama of playing tribal politics because the NDC is the only national mass political party in the country. The party is made up of people from mass and diverse backgrounds in the country.
“From 1992 till now, we’ve chosen leaders from various backgrounds. Rawlings from the Volta Region, Professor Mills from the Central Region and President Mahama from the North. I’m not sure our brothers from the NPP can say same. They have only chosen southerners to be their presidential candidates. If you take the vice-presidential position too, you’ll see the same trend. We don’t discriminate. We see Ghanaians as one people,” he said.
“The President won the elections for Sam Pyne,” says Bernard Allotey Jacobs, during a panel discussion on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ programme Wednesday morning.
According to Allotey Jacobs, President Nana Akufo-Addo’s statements regarding threats to reject the nomination of the NPP Ashanti Regional Secretary, Sam Pyne as Mayor of the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) made a huge difference for the nominee.
Issues have been raised about the Assembly incurring a ¢50 million debt since the regime of Ex-President J.A. Kufuor.
In an interview with Citi News, the KMA Presiding Member, Stephen Ofori said the Assembly members had reached a consensus to not approve any nominee unless all debts hanging on the Assembly were cleared by the government.
The President, delivering a speech during his four-day official visit to the Ashanti Region, pleaded with the Assembly not to refuse the nominee stating it is unfair to attach him to an issue that happened in the past.
To Allotey Jacobs, Sam Pyne owes the President a pool of gratitude.
“The President won the elections for Sam Pyne. You see the President is the ultimate. When the Presiding Member saw things weren’t favouring his expectations, that’s why he said they should lay aside the debt and threats. No, because immediately the President steps in, all must bow!”, he asserted.
A former Minister for Youth Sports, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah has hit back at critics who believe the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) are the same in terms of corruption fight.
“Stop saying the NPP and NDC are the same. There is a vast difference when it comes to fighting corruption. The NDC is better than the NPP,” he argued in an interview.
Ankrah who is also the Director of Elections for the NDC made a strong case for the NDC, saying the socialist party rather prioritizes the wellbeing of Ghanaians whenever they are in power.
To him, the Akufo-Addo-led NPP is seen rather as promoters of corruption.
He made mention of the hounding of former Auditor General, Daniel Yao Domelovo, from office as a clear case of sweeping corrupt deals under the carpet.
“There is no one that was fighting corruption better than Domelovo. He was doing his job well but when the top government officials who survive on shady deals saw he was exposing them then they fought him out of office, ” the former Minister said in Akan.
Afriyie Ankrah believes a government cannot escape corrupt persons but he is of the view that the leader of the government must crack the whip whenever there are such infractions.
When that doesn’t happen, Ankrah argues the topmost official of government cannot escape blame.
It is for that matter that he mentioned the resignation of former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu was as a result of the impediments the government put his way when he was investigating the infamous Agyapa deal which was around some persons closer to President Akufo-Addo.
“What happened to the Agyapa deal? What happened to the PDS deal?” he quizzed as he cast doubts at the competency of Nana Akufo-Addo in fighting corruption.
“When Boakye Agyarko was fired over the AMERI deal, the president said his men misled him. If a president can be misled like this then it shows that he is incompetent,” he added.
Afriyie Ankrah said the failure of the Akufo-Addo government to punish persons who were implicated in the missing oil at BOST a few years back shows that “President Akufo-Addo is a promoter and facilitator of corruption”
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday, 5th October 2021, inspected ongoing work on the retooling and re-equipping of the Kwahu-Atibie Hospital, and also on work on the $$77 million 47-kilometre Mpraeso-Hweehwee-Oyimso.
At the commencement of his 3-day tour of the Eastern Region, President Akufo-Addo visited the Atibie Hospital, which is part of a €40 million contract award to Messrs Contracta Construzion Italia S.R.L. for the retooling and equipping of four selected health facilities in the Eastern Region.
This project, which officially commenced in October 2019, involves work on the KOM Presbyterian Clinic at Aburi, Atibie Hospital in Kwahu, Tetteh Quarshie Memorial Hospital, and the Kibi Government Hospital.
With the project nearly 70% complete, it is expected to be completed on 24th November 2021.
The scope of work being undertaken by the contractors includes works on the OPD, OBS & Gynae Ward, Maternity, Laboratory Unit, Administration, Conference Room, Pharmacy Unit, Theatre Suites and Labour Ward, Surgical Ward, NICU, CSSD, Children Ward, Kitchen, Laundry, Water Supply, Medical Gas System, and A&E Expansion and Imaging Centre.
At Mpraeso, the President inspected work on the reconstruction of the Mpraeso-Hweehwee-Oyimso Road (47.0km), whose contract was awarded on 21st December 2020 and is expected to be completed on 17th July 2023.
The road is located in the Kwahu East and Kwahu South Districts in the Eastern Region, with residents in communities such as Mpraeso, Nkwatia, Abetifi, Abene, Hweehwee, Kwaku Safo, Yaw Tenkorang, Oboyan No. 1, Oboyan No. 2, Abotrensa, Dwerebease and Onyimso set to be beneficiaries of the project.
It is expected that, when completed, it will bring relief to both motorists and pedestrians, reduce vehicle operating cost, reduce travelling time, facilitate the movement of goods and services, as well as serve as an alternative link to the Ashanti region through Oyimso to Asante Akyem Agogo
Director of Communications of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Yaw Buaben Asamoa has said that the decision by the government to purchase a new presidential jet was informed by security advice that was given by Defence Minister, Dominic Nitwul.null
The government has announced plans to purchase a new presidential jet for the president’s foreign travels.
This was disclosed by the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin at the Jubilee House Monday, September 27 during the Presidency’s weekly press briefing.
According to Mr Arhin, the government of Ghana, through the Minister of Defence, Dominic Nitiwul has already started the processes for the procurement of the new jet.
“You would recollect that when the government of President Kufuor left office in 2008, it had procured two jets – the current Falcon and a bigger one but for one reason or the other, the bigger jet was cancelled, and we were left with just one. That has happened, but you will recall that the Defence Minister stated clearly that the government has decided to buy a bigger jet to save us from all these troubles.”
“I don’t want to go into the details, but I am sure that when the minister gets the opportunity, he will give further information on what the government is doing in that respect, but I am sure of the fact that government is already in the process of getting a bigger jet for use”, he told pressmen Monday.null
This revelation comes at a time when the presidency has dismissed claims made by Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, that Akufo-Addo uses luxury chartered jets while on foreign travels which according to him has cost Ghana GH¢10 million so far.
The presidency has however failed to disclose the cost of the president’s travel.
When the North Tongu MP filed an urgent question on the floor of parliament to have the Minister of Finance respond to the cost of the president’s foreign travels the first time, the minister asked for more time to get the figures but he later appeared before the House and said the issue was a matter of National Security.
The MP says he will not relent in his efforts to demand accountability from the government on the matter.
The government has been criticsed for this move. For instance, Mr Abraham Amaliba, a member of the legal team of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) said “said purchasing a new jet is needles because the current Falcon jet is fit for purpose.
“This aircraft I’m told has a life span of 30 years and we have just done eleven so it is a baby in the aviation industry so why will we be citing one or two instances where it develops a fault and based on that we want to buy a new jet
“We all know this plane is good, it can do long-distance travel but I just think that we have a president who has a different taste altogether.”
But reacting to these concerns, Mr Buaben Asamoa who is a former lawmaker for Adentan said “I think at some point we must agree that somebody takes that ultimate decision. The ultimate decision-maker is the manager of the president’s safety and security.
“Those managers are saying that we didn’t have an aircraft that is reliable, we don’t have an aircraft that is serviceable, we don’t have an aircraft with enough capacity to deal with the state’s requirement of the presidency. All these are being said by the manager through the defence Minister.”
The Governing New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) General Secretary is of the belief that removing his party from government after Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s tenure will affect several aspects of the country’s fabric.
According to him, the government has put in place some great social intervention programmes that need to be sustained and that can only be done by the NPP government.
He mentioned the Free Senior High School, Nation Builders Corps, and allowances of Nursing and Teacher Trainees as programmes that will suffer a collapse if the NPP is not retained.
John Boadu was addressing the Regional Delegates in the Upper East Region of Ghana.
“NPP has made such an investment, such that all our Senior High School students are going to school for free. Our opponents have said time and time again that they don’t have the capacity to maintain that system that we are operating.
“What it means is that, if we don’t break the 8, you won’t continue to have the free SHS that you’re having. Our opponents have indicated over the years that they cannot pay training college allowances, both nurses and teachers. So, if you don’t break the 8, you are not going to continue to enjoy it”. He said.
He noted that that the people of the Northern part of Ghana are greater beneficiaries of the social intervention programmes and it’s imperative that they provided the needed support to ensure the NPP “breaks the eight”.
“It is important that you, up north are major beneficiaries of the planting of food and jobs and it is important that we keep our government in place in order for us to continue to benefit”.
John Boadu charged the delegates and supporters of the NPP to work hard in order for the party to hang on to power and transform the fortunes of the Ghanaian people.
• Boakye Agyarko has advised NPP not to impose a candidate on the party
• He said, imposition is not in the party’s DNA
• Boakye Agyarko has declared his intention to contest NPP’s flagbearship race
Boakye Kyeremateng Agyarko, has cautioned, the governing NPP not to impose a candidate on the party as it prepares to elect a candidate to break the eight-year presidential cycle in 2024.
Speaking to Joy FM in a report sighted by GhanaWeb, the former energy minister said, no coronation or imposition has been accepted by the rank and file of the party.
He said imposing a candidate on the party is against the DNA of the governing party.
To him, the governing party has a tradition of allowing candidates to be elected by the party’s delegates, citing the contests between former President Kufuor and then-candidate Nana Akufo-Addo in 2000, as well as, candidates Nana Akufo-Addo and Alan Kyerematen in 2008.
Boakye Agyarko explained, “You can go back to be beginning at our tradition, JB Danquah had to contest and he almost lost. Busia had to contest.
“Victor Owusu was contested by the likes of J.H Mensah and Dr. Kwame Sarfo Adu. Prof Adu Boahene was contested by the likes of Kodua, Kufuor and all of that. Kufour was contested famously by Akufo-Addo and Akufo-Addo was also contested by Alan Kyerematen.”
Agyarko added, “the process must be respected to throw up the leader of the party.”
So far Boakye Agyarko has joined the likes of Vice President Dr. Bawumia, the Trade Minister, Alan Kwadwo Kyeremanteng and the Agric Minister, Dr. Afriyie Akoto to contest for the flagbearership race of the party.
Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, told journalists on September 27, 2021, that Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul, has already begun the processes for Ghana to procure the new jet.
Reacting to the development on Joy FM’s Newsfile, Sammy Gyamfi described the move as an insult to the sensibilities and plight of Ghanaians.null
“I submit forcefully that the decision by Akufo-Addo-Bawumia NPP-led government to buy a new presidential jet is a misplaced priority and will amount to a waste of the public purse if it is allowed. The mere thought of it at this time is insensitive to the plight of the ordinary Ghanaian and an insult to our sensibilities,” Sammy Gyamfi said on the program on October 3, 2021.
Already, some members of the minority caucus of the 8th Parliament have filed urged questions requesting for full disclosure of cost for President Akufo-Addo international trips.
MP for North Tongu, Samual Okudzeto Ablakwa, has on numerous occasions stated that the current presidential jet, the Falcon was efficient enough for the president’s trips instead of chartered flights which was been paid by the State.
Meanwhile, government on its part has justified that the current presidential jet is not fit enough for purpose hence its decision to move ahead to purchase a new one.
The General Secretary of the largest opposition National Democratic Congress has described the report by the three-member committee of inquiry into the disturbances at Ejura as a fiasco that will not yield any results.
Johnson Asiedu Nketia was emphatic that, “no public official has been punished for wrongdoing under the leadership of Nana Akufo-Addo. This report is no exception”.
Speaking in an interview with NEAT FM’s morning show ‘Ghana Montie’, General Mosquito as affectionately called questioned the committee’s report which concludes that the activism of Ibrahim Mohammed, popularly known as Kaaka, cannot be linked to his death.
“So, who killed him?” he asked host, Mac Jerry Osei Agyemang.
But the report explained that the death of Kaaka could more likely be linked to a family feud.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has described as a “blatant lie”, claims by one Ernest Owusu Bempah that former President John Dramani Mahama and the party’s national chairman, Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, masterminded the recent alleged kidnapping of a “fake” pregnant woman in Takoradi in the Western region.
The NDC, in a statement, said the tone and substance of the baseless accusation show that Mr Owusu Bempah had the support of the government “to spew this wicked, malicious and contemptuous accusation in order to reduce the heat the government has drawn to itself as a result of its manhandling of national security challenges and the apparent loss of a firm grip on governance”.
The statement noted that Mr Mahama and Mr Ofosu-Ampofo do not have any hand whatsoever in the happenings in the Western Region, nor are they linked in any way to any of the characters in that alleged kidnapping saga.
The party has, thus, called on its supporters and the public to treat the claim by Mr Owusu Bempah with utter contempt as there is no merit in same.
The party further called on its supporters to constantly hold the Akufo-Addo government to account and to remind the government to honour its sacred duty of securing the lives and properties of Ghanaians.
According to the police, 28-year-old Josephine Panyin Mensah faked her nine-month pregnancy and kidnapping to save her marriage.
Before she confessed, Mr Bempah, at a press conference, accused Mr Mahama and the NDC National Chairman of being behind her kidnapping.
Ms Mensah, now a suspect, appeared in court for the first time on Monday, 27 September 2021, but pleaded not guilty.
She is facing two charges of deceiving a public officer and publication of false news with intent to cause fear and panic.
She was admitted to a bail bond of GHS 50,000 with two sureties
The Agric Minister, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto says former President John Mahama’s brother is stealing government’s subsidised fertilizers meant for smallholder farmers in the country.××
According to the minister, John Mahama’s brother has found his way to be benefiting from the government’s subsidised fertilizers meant for smallholder farmers although he is not qualify because he is into large scale or commercial farming.
The Minister explained that the subsidised fertilizers are meant for poor farmers cultivating about 2 or 3-acre farms and not farmers like Mahama’s brother who is a commercial farmer, cultivating 300 acres and can raise funds to purchase fertilizer for his farm.
“The subsidies are meant for farmers with 2, 3 acres which is the bulk of smallholders and not for 300 acres for goodness sake. So he has actually scrounged on poor farmers to start with, if he was able to do 300 acres with subsidised fertilizer”, Dr. Akoto told Joynews PM Express host, Evans Mensah.
The Agric minister was reacting to former President Mahama’s allegation that the country was facing imminent food shortage.
“So what Mr Mahama is saying cannot be true. In any case, we are talking about millions and millions of farmers. For him to make that conclusion from one observation, it means that when it comes to statistics he has absolutely no clue,”
This revelation was on the back of claims made by the former President that Ghana is most likely to experience food shortage next year because the government flagship Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) programme is a failure.
According to Mr. Manama, his brother who cultivates 300 acres farm is now not getting government’s subsidized fertilizer to farm and has affected his output by reducing his farm size to 80 acres thereby government should inject more capital into it flagship Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) in other for his brother to continue to enjoy the government subsidy.
“My brother is a farmer and he tells me this year, he has not received any fertiliser supply from the government and so he bought his own fertiliser and a bag of fertiliser is very expensive. Normally, he cultivates 300 acres of maize each year.
“But this year, he had to reduce it, he was not able to cultivate even 80 acres. So there’s a possibility of food shortage next year because the Planting for Food and Jobs Programme has failed,” the former President exposed how his brother is enjoying from the poor farmers in the country.
The Agric Minister insists that Mahama’s brother is only ‘stealing’ from the poor farmer
The Vice President of the United States of America (USA), Kamala Harris has noted that Ghanaians voted during free and fair elections held last year.
According to her, this demonstrated the nation’s commitment to democratic principles and institutions.
She said this on Thursday, 23rd September 2021, when she held bilateral talks with President Akufo-Addo at the White House, with the aim of stringing the ties of cooperation and friendship that exist between the two countries.
“Last December, the people of Ghana voted in a free and fair election that demonstrated your nation’s commitment to democratic principles and institutions,” she told President Akufo-Addo.
She further commended President Akufo-Addo for creating the enabling environment for American businesses to thrive in the oil-producing West African country.
She stated that American companies continue to ramp up in Ghana, understanding the significance of the work that they do there to America’s economy much less to the partnership between Ghana and the United States.null
Welcoming President Akufo-Addo to the White House, Mrs. Harris indicated that the meeting with the Ghanaian President “is a reaffirmation of the strength of the relationship between the United States and Ghana, and of course we have deep in historical ties or official bilateral relationship began in 1957.”
She stressed that “American companies continue to ramp up in Ghana, understanding the significance of the work that they do there to America’s economy much less to the partnership between Ghana and the United States.”
“And they do this also because we are confident in the Government of Ghana and the environment, Mr. President, that you have created, which allows for some confidence in the respect and upholding of the rule of law and human rights. And so, with all of that, we look forward to continue to work together.”
On his part, President Akufo-Addo thanked Vice President Harris for the invitation, and stressed that Ghana and the United States of America share very much the same commitments.
“We want to develop our nation as a democracy as a country where freedom and respect for human rights and the rule of law are paramount to our system of governance,” he said.null
Whilst expressing gratitude for the support of the United States towards helping to defeat the pandemic in Ghana, he indicated that the “other main preoccupation for us is the co-operation that we have to put together to defeat the Jihadist insurgency in the Sahel.”
It is an area, he said, that requires the support of the United States Government.
“We are looking for support for our armed forces and for the intelligence agencies of our area that they can be in stronger positions. Many of those leading the Jihadist insurrections in West Africa are the people who came from Iraq after they were driven out from Iraq, so I think if there’s information here that can assist us to be able to track down and be able to deal with these people,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo was hopeful that Ghana and America, now and in the coming years, will continue to “advance our mutual causes, and also strengthen the relations between our two countries.”
Former Central Regional Chairman of the largest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Bernard Allotey Jacobs, has called for maximum support for Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia to be the next President of Ghana.
Although Dr. Bawumia hasn’t been elected or declared flagbearer of the governing New Patriotic Party(NPP), some party supporters have already begun campaigning for him.
There are speculations he might stand for Presidential candidate during the party’s primaries.
Speaking during the Wednesday edition of Peace FM’s ”Kokrokoo”, Allotey Jacobs was of a strong belief that Dr. Bawumia will make a good President.
“I want to see Vice President Bawumia as the next President . . . It’s a fact. There’s a magic in him that he can use to help Ghana to move Ghana forward. Let’s see what is in him!”, he emphasized.
Former Deputy General Secretary of the National Democratic (NDC), Samuel Koku Anyidoho, believes whoever in the opposition party in favour of potential candidates for leadership positions going unopposed are simply hollow-hearted members.
Mr Anyidoho, who claimed he was brandished a traitor for insisting that candidates should not be imposed on the party as the norm used to be since 1992 when the NDC was formed, revealed that in the past, parliamentary candidates, national officers and even flagbearers were imposed on the party until the 2000 electoral defeat.
Speaking on Okay FM’s Ade Akye Abia Morning Show, the former NDC Deputy Chief Scribe held the view that imposition of candidates should never be countenanced, as even the late John Evans Atta Mills, when he was a sitting President, allowed others to compete against him.
To him, anyone championing the imposition of candidates within the umbrella fratenity are not “true and loyal NDC members”.
“If you ask me as a true and loyal NDC member, at all times, let there be a contest. President Mills even as a sitting President was contested. When he was being contested, did he ever complained? I was his spokesperson; did I ever go after anybody for contesting President Atta Mills? He threatened to dismiss me if I had gone after Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings.”
“ . . for me, any attempt by anybody today to advocate the imposition of a flagbearer, are from persons who are not dyed-in-the-wool NDC members; they should go back to where they came from. Anybody who says that the NDC should impose a candidate on the party is not a true member of the NDC . . . because true NDC members in 2000 decided to move away from this imposition; they don’t want impositions of candidates any longer,” he cautioned.
Touching on the rumoured reports of Dr Kwabena Duffuor’s desire to contest NDC’s Presidential Primaries, Koku Anyidoho said that the former Finance Minister is one of President Atta Mills’ legacy equation as he was instrumental in the single digit inflation achievement of the former President.
“But if you ask me, again talking about Mills’ legacy, and a certain Dr Kwabena Duffuor was part of that legacy equation, when it comes to the economy; the 34 months’ single digit inflation, the introduction of single spine pay structure within the challenge the country faced at that time and then the inherited debts that Atta Mills Administration came to meet, and being able to reach out to the international donor communities to be able to look favourably upon Ghana. Ghana became the shining star in terms of economic management, because Prof. Mills had his own economic advisory team,” he mentioned.
He professed his love for Dr Duffuor for the fact that he [Dr Kwabena Duffuor] is among the people with the ability to succeed; thus, he has established businesses and that makes him possess the qualities to lead the NDC.
“ . . and for me I love people who are able to establish because it is not easy to establish; Dr Kwabena Duffuor has established businesses and now he is the head of the Institute for Fiscal Studies. He owns it and he heads it as well. If you give that man and they are putting him out there and they are saying that he has certain qualities, you can’t rap those qualities away from him. Indeed, he has those qualities; you don’t have to manufacture those qualities,” he professed.
According to him, the New Patriotic Party is focused on building the party into one formidable political party that cannot be easily beaten in elections.
He noted that currently, the NPP is registering its members and securing its base ahead of the 2024 elections.
Prior to the registration, the NPP held its Constituency Delegates Conferences across the country; a move that solidifies the party and brings an end to several challenges at the constituency level.
However, not much is been heard about the National Democratic Congress (NDC) than attacks and name-calling over the 2020 elections the party lost.
“We have won two elections. We have won the Presidential election twice in a row. In the first election, we beat their candidate 1.5 million plus, in the second election, we beat him 500,000 plus votes.
“We are coming again and we will beat them in the next election. This is because what makes the people of Ghana vote for us, the NDC hasn’t studied to know it,” he said in an interview on Accra-based OKAY FM.
“While the NDC continues to make noise, the NPP is working on its base as a political party. The party has organized its constituency conferences and is currently registering members of the political party.
“In the month of October, the party will be organizing regional conferences to assess and deliberate issues on the state of the political party in all the regions and by December we will be organizing our National Annual Delegates Conference,” he added.
The youth of Odododiodoo, one of the three constituencies that make to the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) have staged an angry protest over speculations about the supposed appointment of former Deputy Greater Accra Minister, Elizabeth Kwatsoo Sackey at Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE).
For close to three hours, the youth, made up of angry members of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) and opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) blocked the Atta Mills High Street which is in the heart of the capital Accra, burning car tyres amid chanting of war songs and shouts of ‘no Adjei Sowah, no vote’ and no Adjei Sowah, no Mayor’.
This was to shore up support for their preferred candidate for position who interestingly is the current and sitting Accra Mayor, Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah.
According to the youth most of who wore an were clad in red arm and neck bands, they will not accept any appointment short of the mention of Adjei Sowah as Accra Mayor since the rumour mill is awashed with speculation about some persons scheming to have their man removed and replaced with Elizabeth Sackey.
Key among the protesters was popular boxer cum musician, Braimah Kamoko famously known as Bukom Banku who said they will kick against the appointment of any person if not Adjei Sowah.
It took the intervention of officers and men from the Jamestown Police to plead with them to stop the burning of the tyres on the road and also to allow traffic flow.
In a statement the Concerned Youth noted “the Accra Metropolitan Assembly arguable is a pulsating heart of the Greater Accra Region and for that matter, it deserves a mastermind who can fix its daily conundrums and deservedly, Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah fits the bill perfectly in my estimation.”
It said “our effusion about who becomes Mayor of Accra may be coming late in the day but it is important to note that whoever the appointing authority nominates is vested not only with role carved by the local government act that sets it up but also for the politics of it. Men say that a stitch in time saves nine, and so we need to take a thousand stitches today to save nine tomorrow.”
“We have resolved in our thinking and humbly opine that Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah, the current Mayor of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly would best fit the portfolio and can serve the President’s vision of Accra and that of the people”, they noted, saying “our resolve herein is based on the successes Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah has chalked in supporting the President’s agenda and vision for the Accra Metropolitan Assembly.
As a true grassroot and a loyalist of the Danquah Busia Dombo tradition, they said Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah delivered Greater Accra against all odds by winning 21 seats as Regional Secretary in the 2016 elections, a portfolio he had held for two terms running.
They therefore insisted that his appointment and having received a 100% confirmation on 24th March, 2017 did not come as a fluke.
Apart from that, they said “Adjei Sowah has always prioritized sanitation which has long been an issue in Accra, at the nexus of public safety, public health, the informal economy (which employs about 75 percent of Accra’s residents), and emissions contributing to climate change. He’s constantly emphasized inclusivity and equity which remains as his core of work” and that he “has been aligned to Accra’s development and budget framework to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that has helped to maintain principles amid this COVID-19 pandemic.
Under his tenure, the youth said Accra has committed to publishing a Voluntary Local Review (VLR) to report on the progress towards equity and sustainability which is first of a kind.
“Because of his all embracing attitude and staunch believer of traditional values, he has built an enviable rapport with the traditional authorities in Ga and has always championed development in diverse ways”, they stated.
For them, it therefore not come as a surprise when the Ga Traditional Council petitioned the President to consider the renomination of Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah.
They could not but touted his credentials, saying “under the ambit of Mohammed Nii Adjei, the three constituencies under the Accra Metropolitan Assembly can now boast of a newly built constituency offices which have been commissioned and currently in use in the enhancement of activities for the NPP. The periods of renting constituency offices in these three constituencies are now a thing of the past.”
“We strongly admire the tactful contributions during the just ended 2020 election. In spite of his ill health during that period, he never reneged on sitting at the table to draw strategies and to show the way during the electioneering period. Indeed, Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah is a masterpiece and we are fortunate to have him”, they noted, whilst stating with emphasis “ as a group, our interest is not to question or rundown the competencies of the other aspirants in this contest but it is proper to know who and what they are bringing to the table. We are not looking forward to an armchair Mayor or one that will only be a puppet and to succumb to the whims and caprices of some selfish party elders within Greater Accra Region.”
“We want a leader who will be at the beck and call for all manner of person irrespective of the Party coloring.
We want a leader who is firm, courageous and up to task for the job ahead.
We want a leading who can lead us to break the eight as espoused by all party faithful. If all of these are anything to go by then, our surest bet to envisioning this vision can be possible only through the leadership of Hon. Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah.
Its Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah we know and it him we know can lead and deliver the daunting task ahead”, they insisted
The New Patriotic Party has accused former President John Mahama of attacking the electoral commission in order to gain support for the internal presidential primaries of the National Democratic Congress.
According to the Communications Director of the party Yaw Buaben Asamoa the NDC failed to prove before the Supreme Court that the EC rigged the polls.
“In the event, it is obvious that these allegations are being made ahead of the internal primaries of the NDC. In seeking the chairmanship of his party, the NDC General Secretary is choosing to denigrate the conduct of the 2020 Elections to curry favour with his grassroots. Yet, he was the star NDC witness who confessed in the Supreme Court that they had not won the election and went further to do the calculations that showed that the NDC had indeed lost miserably. Noted though is that he is expert at manipulating grassroots opinion, so his opponents better watch out.
“On the other hand, the premature presidential campaign embarked on by former President Mahama has led to his potential opponents coming out of the woodwork to define the kind of leader they will be seeking in 2024. Opponents of early aspirant Mahama believe the NDC will benefit more from a ‘thinking’ leadership, which will make them ‘credible’. Clearly then, not everyone in the NDC is for needless attacks on the Electoral Commission. Such a strategy may not necessarily be intelligent, according to those who do not support the de-facto candidate. The people who do not support Mahama’s repeated attempts to lead the NDC understand that such attacks may not be in line with a thinking approach to the issues that will drive the 2024 elections,” he said at a press conference on Friday.
On the NPP, he announced plans for the party’s coming mass registration exercise.
“Its purpose is to determine the size of our support within polling station areas. In other words, we want to know the number of people who are likely to vote for the NPP in any polling station area. This data will help Polling Station Executives, Coordinators and Constituency Executives with planning for elections, campaigning and logistics. Many Constituencies are doing very well so far.
“The mass registration list is not only meant to be used for voting for Party Officers. National Council, using Article 18 of the NPP Constitution will issue guidelines for Polling Station, Coordinator, Constituency Officer, Regional Executive and National Executive Elections. So we are assuring all our polling station executives, Coordinators, and Constituency Executives to open up, work hard and try and capture as many persons who are likely to vote NPP as possible. The names should also go into the books that have been provided. Over 40,000 books have been dispatched and distributed to Polling Stations throughout the country.
“All polling station executives should have a schedule that makes them available to support this process with the book in a transparent visible place for all desirous of putting their names down to do so”.
Below are details of the statement by the NPP
PRESS CONFERENCE BY THE NPP ADDRESSED BY THE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS, YAW BUABEN ASAMOA
Friday, 17th September, 2021
PARTY REGISTRATION, MMDCEs SELECTION AND IMPACT OF GIADEC
Good afternoon friends of the Media, I bid you a warm welcome to this Friday afternoon interaction.
Today, we will highlight ongoing private sector initiatives that are part of the long term NPP plan to transform the economy to one that adds value to our natural products. NPP has a plan. That plan is to invest in skills through appropriate education, focus on post-harvest security through 1D1F, expand light and heavy industry through the bauxite value chain and increase access to reliable energy and transportation. This plan will generate jobs and incomes over a wide range of activities in the private sector.
For example, the aim in the cocoa sector is to process over 50% of cocoa locally into finished and semi-finished products in order to get a healthy share of the multi-billion dollar market for cocoa products.
Essentially, the prices for raw materials stagnate or roughly remain static whilst that of finished products keep going up. We will be able to buy less and less of what we import if our economy does not process more. Ghana and Ivory Coast produce over 60% of cocoa beans but earnings account for less than 5% of the international market. In 1974, one could buy a Volkswagen Golf car for approximately four thousand Euro in today’s prices. Now, it costs over twenty thousand Euros. So one needs over five times more cocoa money to afford the same thing.
Ladies and gentlemen, to keep up with pricing, we need to add more value. The private sector is best placed to do that. We are therefore complimenting the NPP Government for the private sector initiatives that are set to make a real difference to how jobs and incomes are created in this country.
In the last two weeks, the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre hosted an investment summit dubbed “Sparkup; 2021” aimed at further marketing Ghana as the preferred destination for FDI, H.E the President then hosted the “Presidential Business Summit”, bringing together titans of business to dialogue with the Government, after which the Ghana Integrated Aluminium Development Corporation (GIADEC) new partner was unveiled.
Before I look at these a bit more however, ladies and gentlemen, let me address a couple of matters. First is the mass registration exercise of the NPP. Its purpose is to determine the size of our support within polling station areas. In other words, we want to know the number of people who are likely to vote for the NPP in any polling station area. This data will help Polling Station Executives, Coordinators and Constituency Executives with planning for elections, campaigning and logistics. Many Constituencies are doing very well so far.
The mass registration list is not only meant to be used for voting for Party Officers. National Council, using Article 18 of the NPP Constitution will issue guidelines for Polling Station, Coordinator, Constituency Officer, Regional Executive and National Executive Elections. So we are assuring all our polling station executives, Coordinators, and Constituency Executives to open up, work hard and try and capture as many persons who are likely to vote NPP as possible. The names should also go into the books that have been provided. Over 40,000 books have been dispatched and distributed to Polling Stations throughout the country.
All polling station executives should have a schedule that makes them available to support this process with the book in a transparent visible place for all desirous of putting their names down to do so.
The second thing is the eminent publication of the list of MMDCEs. Having patiently waited for the list, we expect the nominees to be accepted in good faith. Every nominee on the list as will be published is a nominee of H.E the President. Therefore, the expectation is that the Party grassroots will respect the choices and receive and support the approval of these nominees for the benefit of the Party. We recognise that not everybody in every Assembly will have their preferred choice. However, we also believe that as much as possible, every eligible candidate has had a fair bite of the selection process.
Ladies and gentlemen, now that the selection process is over, we urge all former contestants and stakeholders to adopt the nominees as their own, encourage smooth confirmation processes, and support approved MMDCEs to deliver the best to their areas. Once the list is published, competition in any form, ought to end.
We urge everybody to be calm and to act in ways that promote good relations at a working level in order to give the nominees the best possible opportunity to work in the interest of the grassroots of the nation. Having said that, we also advise the nominees to, as much as possible, open up and provide space for all shades of opinion in their work.
NDC ELECTION 2020 PROPAGANDA
Ladies and gentlemen, the third issue is external to the NPP. The NDC leadership, especially General Secretary Asiedu Nketiah and former President Mahama, keep making wild allegations about the conduct of the 2020 General Elections. Having lied to their people about winning, they went to the Supreme Court with no evidence of any grievance apart from a declaration that had already been corrected.
When the NPP petitioned the Supreme Court in 2012-2013, we specified in detail over twenty two different electoral infractions including over voting, ghost polling stations and unsigned pink sheets. Every allegation we made was backed by a pink sheet. Without any evidence whatsoever, no pink sheets or collated figures of their own, these leading members of the NDC continue to make wild, speculative allegations.
Unfortunately for them, the integrity of the 2020 electoral process was accepted by the international community, corroborated by local independent observers and called for the NPP by prominent local media. Nine months after the elections, the matter is closed as Ghanaians have shifted their attention to pressing matters of governance.
In the event, it is obvious that these allegations are being made ahead of the internal primaries of the NDC. In seeking the chairmanship of his party, the NDC General Secretary is choosing to denigrate the conduct of the 2020 Elections to curry favour with his grassroots. Yet, he was the star NDC witness who confessed in the Supreme Court that they had not won the election and went further to do the calculations that showed that the NDC had indeed lost miserably. Noted though is that he is expert at manipulating grassroots opinion, so his opponents better watch out.
On the other hand, the premature presidential campaign embarked on by former President Mahama has led to his potential opponents coming out of the woodwork to define the kind of leader they will be seeking in 2024. Opponents of early aspirant Mahama believe the NDC will benefit more from a ‘thinking’ leadership, which will make them ‘credible’. Clearly then, not everyone in the NDC is for needless attacks on the Electoral Commission. Such a strategy may not necessarily be intelligent, according to those who do not support the de-facto candidate. The people who do not support Mahama’s repeated attempts to lead the NDC understand that such attacks may not be in line with a thinking approach to the issues that will drive the 2024 elections.
NPP PLAN FOR JOBS
Ladies and gentlemen, those issues include incomes and jobs. Jobs put money in pockets. Jobs for the many youth and skilled people the country is developing. Value addition through industrialisation creates jobs. Aggressive industrialisation will also boost infrastructure, especially railways, ports and energy generation and expand our GDP. We will export more, earn more foreign exchange and borrow less. That is the goal of the NPP.
An integrated aluminium industry has been a dream of the Gold Coast before Ghana. Bauxite mining since the 1940s could have earned Ghana a lot of value. Indeed, it is in expectation of that value that in the early 1960s, Ghana in partnership with international partners developed the Akosombo Dam and established VALCO. Unfortunately, a refinery was not built. So Ghana did not achieve full value. Rather, raw bauxite continued to be exported cheap and the expensive refined product imported by VALCO for smelting.
Ladies and gentlemen, last Wednesday, His Excellency President Akufo-Addo took a giant step for Ghana when he witnessed the signing ceremony of a project led by GIADEC which is to build a mine and most significantly, a refinery in Ghana. The refinery, the first of two planned, will finally integrate aluminium production in Ghana, creating thousands of jobs, especially in the downstream fabrication sector. Aluminium is the second most used metal in the world. No wonder President Akufo-Addo describes the Integrated Aluminium Industry as core to the industrialisation of Ghana.
GIADEC intends to inject six billion dollars of investment into the aluminium processing sector alone. Its partner industry, Iron and Steel, will also inject massive amounts of capital. The Ghana Integrated Iron & Steel Development Corporation (GIISDEC) has announced already assessed reserves of 6 billion metric tonnes of iron ore.
Ladies and gentlemen, that is a completely new opportunity for Ghana. It is in the expectation of the difference such huge projects can make to the economy and living standards of Ghanaians that we hope will differentiate NPP from other parties. The NPP has a consistent approach, increasing national wealth through investments in human capital, value for money infrastructure and private sector led value addition to our natural products.
We believe this vision of a Ghana Beyond Aid, is that which will finally enable Ghana break through the ranks of industrialised nations from Africa and into the world. With NPP, the future is purposeful and hopeful.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has revealed that going forward, it would be compelled by circumstances to arm its polling agents with bulletproof vests and other ammunitions to fight oppressors and also resist illegalities from so-called security operatives on the election day.
The decision, according to the party’s Director of Elections, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah stems from lessons learnt by the party from the 2020 general elections which was characterized by pockets of violence, resulting in the death of eight persons.
“Going forward, we have learnt lessons and maybe we have to give bulletproof vests and guns to our people to defend themselves at the collation centres. Nobody is going to allow what happened in Tachiman South to happen again”, he revealed on Kumasi-based Orange Fm
At least, eight people including children and a pregnant woman were shot and killed by security personnel deployed to protect lives and properties on the December 7 last year at various constituencies.
The government through the Interior Ministry has launched investigations into the incident that has left several others with varying degrees of injuries.
The 2020 Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, has assured the people of Techiman which recorded such deaths that the next NDC administration will ensure a speedy investigation of the December 2020 election-related killings in Techiman and punish the culprits.
According to Mr. Mahama, if the Akufo-Addo and Bawumia government reneges on its duty of punishing those responsible for the shooting and killing of the three persons in Techiman during the elections, the NDC will investigate and punish all such persons.
The 2020 elections, for the first time, saw the killings of eight defenceless citizens, among whom were children, with Techiman South recording a number of casualties.
But nine months after the incident and with no one held responsible for the crimes, Mr. Mahama has insisted that it is important for justice to be done in order to forestall such occurrences from being repeated in future.
“We have said that justice must not only be done but be seen to be done. It is important that those who committed those crimes are punished lest they will repeat the same action tomorrow. This is the nature of impunity.”
“Because Techiman occurred and nothing happened, that’s what encouraged the Ejura [killings]. And when it continues and no one is punished then there are disturbances…”
But the Former Deputy Youth and Sports Minister intimated that “The do or die spirit will be at work. …we are not going be complacent and allow NPP to steal our votes. Let’s all wake up to protect the votes cast as said by President Mahama”, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah charged NDC supporter
Nana Akomea says Mahama must quickly withdraw the comments if it is an expression that connotes death and violence.
A former Director of Communications for the governing New Patriotic Party, (NPP), Nana Akomea, has urged former President John Dramani Mahama to withdraw the do-or-die comment he made in relation to the 2024 election.
According to Nana Akomea, Mr. Mahama must quickly withdraw the comments if it is an expression that connotes death and violence.
While on his ‘Thank You’ tour in the Bono Region, the 2020 presidential candidate of the NDC said his party will be more vigilant during the 2024 general elections.
“The 2020 elections were rigged for the NPP. We have however accepted the ruling of the Supreme Court for the sake of peace. However, come 2024, the NDC will be extra vigilant at the polling stations because that is where the elections are won.”
“So at the polling station [in the next election], it will be do or die. I am not saying all die be die. I’m saying it will be ‘do or die’ because the right thing must be done,” Mahama said.
However, critics believe the statement is in bad taste and have demanded a retraction.
Mr. Mahama has justified the comments indicating it is an idiomatic expression that cannot be equated to the all-die-be comment made by the then-candidate Akufo-Addo in the run-up to the 2012 elections.
“It is an idiomatic expression. In the English Language, we have idioms in there. I think those who left school early do not understand idiomatic expressions. Do or die means a critical assignment you have, and you must do the needful or perish. What it means is that [officials of the] NDC shouldn’t wait and go to the Supreme Court again.”
“So we have to do whatever we need to do at the polling station and the collation centres. So I won’t retract. The next election for NDC is going to be a do-or-die affair because we have to do the right thing at the polling stations. So I’m telling all our party executives that they must be at the polling stations and make sure the right thing is done. They must also be at the collation centres and make sure the right thing is done.”
But Nana Akomea disagrees with the justification.
He insists the comment by Mr. Mahama only endorses electoral violence.
“He should come out very quickly to say the expression I used, if it connotes violence and death, that is not what I meant and I withdraw it. It is not weakness, it is strength. We are sad about the unfortunate death at Techiman, but what John Dramani Mahama is saying is actually justifying the thing.”
• Sammy Gyamfi has accused President Akufo-Addo and Bawumia of engaging in ‘malata’ economic analysis
• He said most of the things they talk about are now worse off under their tenure
• He noted, the fundamentals of the economy are weaker
Sammy Gyamfi, the national communications officer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), has said, prior to the 2016 general elections, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia were always engaging in ‘malata’ economic analysis which made Ghanaians voted for them.
He said, after winning the elections in 2016 and in 2020, the duo have not been able to make Ghana the paradise they promised Ghanaians but rather things are worst as compared to the situation before the 2016 elections.
Speaking on Pan African TV, Gyamfi noted, the price of fuel which was GH¢16.00 per gallon in 2016 is almost GH¢30.00 in 2021, the prices of cement, iron rods and other building materials have shot up, putting a huge burden on Ghanaians.
“Our debt position is the worst ever in the history of this fourth republic, our budget deficit for the last fiscal year, 2020 is the worst ever in the history of this country, cost of living is the worst ever. What is the price of a gallon of petrol today, that gallon of petrol which was sold at just about GH¢16.00 in 2016 is today selling at almost GH¢30…Look at the exchange rate, the dollar which was selling at about GH¢4.00 in 2016 is today selling at over GH¢6.00,” Gyamfi explained.
He indicated, Ghanaians would not have believed if they were told the cedi to the dollar will be more than GH¢6.00 but “under Dr Bawumia, the so-called ‘economic wizard’, ‘economic messiah’ of the NPP, the dollar is over GH¢6.00…”
He said the amount of money the Akufo-Addo led government is spending on debt servicing alone is unprecedented.
“The amount of money spent on debt servicing alone is unprecedented. Never in the history of this country have we seen that total revenue as a country is consumed by only two budget items; compensation and interest payment,” he said.
Sammy Gyamfi reechoed Dr Bawumia’s famous statement ‘when the fundamentals are weak, the interest rate will expose you’ indicating that, the handlers of the economy have lost control that is why the cedi is in ‘free-fall’.
“Today by [Dr Bawumia’s] standard, the fundamentals are weaker than they were in 2016 because if you look at the rate of depreciation today, it is unprecedented. Apart from the exchange rate, is the budget deficit which is a fact, 11%, unprecedented; apart from that is the rising unemployment…it is worse off than it was in 2016 when they were making a lot of noise about the creation of jobs.
“Apart from that, when you go to the market and you engage in the malata economic analysis Dr Bawumia and President Akufo-Addo used to engage in 2016 when they were in opposition, you would realize that we are worse off…,” Sammy Gyamfi argued.
The National Chairman of the opposition National Democratic Congress Samuel Ofosu Ampofo has hit hard at the General Secretary of the ruling party John Boadu describing him as a failure.
According to him, Mr Boadu has no right criticise former President John Mahama because he failed to protect his party’s seat in Parliament during the 2020 electioneering.
“What I want to tell the NPP General Secretary John Boadu who’s suddenly had a penchant for wearing suits and addressing press conferences and insulting ex-President Mahama is that he was elected General Secretary when the NPP had 169 seats in Parliament. He has failed woefully to protect the 169 seats and it has today dropped to 137 seats. If we are talking about competency and who is able to manage, John Boadu should not come and compare himself to Mr Mahama,” he told a gathering in Kumasi during Mr Mahama’s Thank You tour of the region
He stressed: “We went to the polls together and we are all witnesses to the logistics that the NPP deployed. We know the huge sums of monies the NPP spent during the elections and we also know all the things they shared to win votes. If you are a General Secretary and you are given all these things and you lose most of the seats you had and the NPP is using force to declare themselves the Majority in Parliament. How dare John Boadu to insult Mahama. I think that he has performed so abysmally that if it were to be the NDC, he would not have been given the chance or platform to be addressing press conference in the name of the party.”
The NPP General Secretary has in recent times held series of press conferences attacking Mr Mahama and his utterances on the economy.
“Former President Mahama and Seth Terkper are on public record as being the worse duo to have ever been in charge of the Ghanaian economy at the same time.
“This pair is a dangerous pair, yet in their public forum on 6th September 2021, this pair sought to create the impression that they had the best of times running this Ghanaian economy,”
“Unfortunately for them the facts shows otherwise. Much as John Mahama seek his re-election on a campaign platform of going back to the IMF, he attempts to confuse history by painting a rosy picture. He said he is somebody who loves history but he confuses history by attempting to paint a rosy picture of his disastrous management of the Ghanaian economy between 2012 and 2016,” Mr Boadu said at a press briefing last week
A faction within the youth base of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Ashanti Region, has passed a vote of no confidence in former President John Mahama and called for a new flag bearer for the party ahead of the 2024 general election. The group insists a new face is needed to rally the party’s support base into a “formidable” force for the next election.
The disgruntled youth, in a press statement, also accused Mr Mahama of neglecting the Ashanti Region when he won power in 2012.
“How come only Tamale metropolis had three cabinet ministers yet the biggest region in the country, Ashanti was neglected?” the group asked.
“In fact, at the start of the administration, there was only one minister from Ashanti Region – the Minister of Environment Science and Technology, Professor Oteng Agyei – who was sacked bitterly and mysteriously just some few months into the administration,” the statement signed by the convenor, Mr Kweku Asare Mensah said.
“How come John Mahama appointed five cabinet ministers from Central Region in addition to having the vice-president from same region?”
“How come there were also five cabinet ministers from Eastern Region in addition to the chief of staff?”
“John Mahama, who could neglect theAshanti Regionthis much now pretends to be the ‘lover boy’ just to deceive us and neglect the region again”.
“Our message to him is simple: He shouldn’t count on us because he neglected us when he had the power”.
“NDC needs new leadership direction, a leader who is in to build a more formidable party not one who is only in for his personal good,” the group said.
“John Mahama is scheduled to hit the region on 13 September with his Thank You tour, but the youth of the party is sending a signal that they are fed up with him”, the group added.
The National Youth Organizer of the New Patriotic Party, (NPP) Henry Nana Boakye has unleashed his fury on the ”Fix the Country” leader, Barker-Vormaqor and his likes who are enthused over the Military takeover in the People’s Republic of Guinea and also wishing for same to happen in Ghana.
Mr. Barker-Vormaqor, in a Facebook post, complimented the Guinean soldiers for seizing power and detaining the country’s President Alpha Condé who ruled for 10 years, serving from 2010 to 2021, and changed the constitution to run for a third term.
“Neho! I welcome the news of a military coup in Guinea. Still waiting on confirmation of its success. Hopefully a new transition process is put in place quickly. Guinea shall work again”, he said.
Joining a panel discussion on Peace FM’s morning show ”Kokrokoo”, Henry Nana Boakye, popularly called Nana B wasn’t enthralled by Mr. Barker-Vormaqor’s comments.
Narrating how it looked like during the Military rule, Nana B disclosed his father, Edward Osei Boakye, a successful businessman, had his businesses taken away from him by the coup orchestrators; not to talk about the many Ghanaians who suffered other losses during the coup era.
He also reminded the coup proponents of the excruciating pains some Ghanaians went through and the numerous deaths under the coup regime, therefore wondering why any person would wish for the return of coup days in Ghana.
”Today, you’re in Ghana and eat in the morning, afternoon and evening; you have freedom of speech. Nobody disturbs you, today, every person can wake up and freely go about his or her work and you’re wishing for coup d’état in Ghana? It will be upon your head! Have you ever witnessed a coup d’état before? Have you seen people in pain before? Do you know the number of people who have died? You don’t know!
”Then you start a movement called Fix the Country and later on, you’re telling us that we should embrace and celebrate coup d’état in another hoping for it to happen here. God will let it all come upon their own heads!!”, he fumed.
”Do you know how people have suffered because of this (coup d’état)?”, he questioned.
”Sometimes, I’m even amazed that some are even lawyers and making such utterances. Coup is never a panacea for any problems in any country. Never!”
”Because Nana Addo is President, they’re calling for coup. We experienced dumsor for 4 years, did anybody call for coup d’état? Never!”, Nana B exclaimed
The party’s General Secretary John Boadu, who slammed the NDC, advised them to invest in polling agents who can calculate the results in an election instead of ‘machomen.’
Using the 2020 election petition to argue his case, he claimed the NDC went to the Supreme court without any evidence to back their case.
In his view, it would be painful for people to wake up at dawn and go out and vote for a party that lacks what it takes to collate its own results.null
He said, “unlike the NDC, the NPP is a party that when you vote for, in six hours, we can collate our own results and know what we got. But if you vote for the NDC na d a simple architecture they can not invest in at the polling stations, then they don’t deserve your vote.
I would advise the NDC to invest in a simple Makola Calculator’ instead of investing in machomen and people who cannot add one plus one,” he said.
“The NPP is a competent party. It is the only party when you vote for you are assured of accountability and will have no regrets. Mahama must exercise patience and invest in the technology to collate his results. He should stop investing in machomen if he wants to win,” he concluded.
Charles Owusu has condemned the ‘do or die’ affair comment by Ex-President John Dramani Mahama on Akina Radio in the Bono-East Region during his ‘Thank You’ tour.
Speaking to an obviously shocked Presenter, the former President said; ”We learn from the past so we [NDC] have learned our lessons from the 2020 election. The next elections will be won or lost at the polling station”.
“If otherwise, it will be a do or die affair at the polling station. The right thing must be done. We will win our election at the polling station.”
“We will do everything to make sure the election is transparent and fair. We don’t want to cheat them, so they shouldn’t. We won’t wait for any Supreme Court, no!”
Responding to John Mahama’s comments during a panel discussion on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ programme, the former Head of Monitoring Unit at the Forestry Commission, Charles Owusu asked him to desist from making utterances that could potentially foment mayhem.
“I don’t think anybody should entertain these statements and come to explain to us what he (Mahama) said. It’s plain language. Nobody will go into the 2024 elections to die for any person to become President in this country,” he cautioned.
He further schooled Mr. Mahama on the importance of life over death saying, “what we can’t use money to buy, we can’t use power or money to protect it. That’s life; nothing on earth is important than it. Your legacy in the world is your life. Power doesn’t guarantee your life”.
“With all due respect, Mr. President, what you said was inappropriate,” he stressed.
Former President John Dramani Mahama has pledged to continue with projects started by the current government if he is given the chance to lead the country after the 2024 general election.null
Addressing the Bono Regional House of Chiefs in Sunyani on his “Thank You Tour,” the 2020 Flagbearer of the NDC accused the government of neglecting projects started by his administration thereby causing financial loss to the State.
Former President Mahama was accompanied by the 2020 Vice Presidential Candidate of the NDC, Professor Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang and some National and Regional Executives of the party when he paid a courtesy call on the Bono Regional House of Chiefs.
It was to seek the blessing of the House as he began the Bono Regional leg of his Thank You Tour.
In his address, the President of the Bono Regional House of Chiefs appealed to Mr. Mahama to endeavour to continue projects started by the previous governments to ensure continuity of developmental initiatives if he came back to power in the 2024 general election.
He also called on the government to set up a Committee to investigate the violence that occurred in the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary elections.null
Former President Mahama thanked the people of the Bono Region for showing support to the NDC during the 2020 elections.
Touching on the issue of abandoned projects, he accused the current Akufo Addo led administration of neglecting projects started by his administration and pledged to do better if given the nod in 2024.
On job creation, Mr. Mahama insisted that the current government has not done enough.
“The NDC is open to dialogue on youth employment so as to address challenges in that area,” he stated.
The team also paid a courtesy call on the Bono Regional Chief Imam, where special prayers were said for Former President Mahama and the NDC.
The former President and leader of the NDC is on a thank-you tour of the middle belt of Ghana which includes Bono, Ashanti, Bono East.
John Dramani Mahama has been speaking on the 2020 election and the casualties recorded hinting of a do or die election in 2024.
“Everything that happens you learn lessons from them. For us, we have learnt lessons from the 2020 elections. The elections will be won or lost at the polling station. So it will be a do or die affair at the polling station, I didn’t say all die be die, I said do or die.
The right thing must be done. In 2024, the polling stations is where we will win the elections. We won’t wait and go to the Supreme Court. Collation center and polling station, we will do everything to make sure the election is transparent, free and fair. We wouldn’t want to cheat NPP and we also don’t want anyone to cheat us. The elections should be transparent so that the person the people of Ghana want to be their leader will be made their leader.”
But reacting to the former President’s declaration in a post shared on Facebook, Allotey Jacobs said “May you never trust the words of a desperate man”.
Meanwhile, the former President has been criticized for his comment with several Ghanaians believing that a statesman should not make such comments.
Former President John Mahama has been personally involved in corruption so he cannot declare he is incorruptible just as President Nana Akufo-Addo has done on many occasions, the General Secretary of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has said.
At a press conference on Thursday, 26 August 2021, Mr John Boadu said: “Former President Mahama asserts without proof that the NPP has stolen Ghana’s money and that he can ensure accountability through elections”.
“Is that the same Mahama whose government signed onto a half-baked contract of $1.2 billion for the Ghana Retail Payments Systems Infrastructure?” he asked, adding: “Sibton Switch Systems Ltd has just lost an arbitration demand for $478 million from Ghana for revoking that agreement”.
“The Akufo-Addo administration did a far more enhanced project for only $4.5 million”, Mr Boadu said.
According to him, “the NPP government saved the country billions of dollars which have helped the government channel resources into projects like Free SHS, Planting for Food and Job, 1D1F, etc.”
In his view, Mr Mahama’s involvement in many corruption cases robs him of the moral right to declare himself incorruptible.
“We all know that unlike President Akufo-Addo, candidate John Mahama cannot and has not been able to make any bold statement to tout his incorruptibility because of his personal involvement in a lot of the corruption scandals that plagued his administration,” he stated.
“In any event”, Mr Boadu added: “As a former President, Mahama does not have to wait to deal with corruption”.
“He knows the institutions within the government responsible for investigation and prosecution”.
“He can report his so-called evidence of corruption allegations about the NPP to any of the enforcement agencies that Ghana can boast off, including the Special Prosecutor that he, Mahama, has advised to be independent,” Mr Boadu challenged.
The NPP’s comments come on the back of Mr Mahama’s recent remarks that Ghanaians should vote out the NPP so that the next government can hold the Akufo-Addo administration accountable for all their money they have stolen.
“The NPP have no intention of fighting corruption and, so, the only way they can be made to account to the people of Ghana is for them to leave office so that the new government will come and audit them and show where they have gone wrong”, Mr Mahama said during his Thank You tour of the Upper West Region, warning: “Otherwise, all the money they have stolen, they will just walk away with it”.
“If you participate in politics or are a participant in public service, one of the first things you must be willing to do is to be accountable to the people”, he said.
“The only way they could be accountable is for them to leave office so that the people of Ghana can ask them questions and audit them to make sure they account for the period they were in office”, Mr Mahama said.
Earlier, Mr Mahama said the Akufo-Addo-led administration has refused to account for how some GHS19 billion of the COVID-19 relief fund was spent despite several calls on the government to do so.
According to Mr Mahama, the money the government said it spent to ease the suffering of Ghanaians due to the pandemic is “laughable.”
He said since the government has refused to audit the account, it will take another government to do so and make them account to the people of Ghana.
Speaking to the media in Tamale, as part of his ‘Thank You’ tour of the Northern Region, Mr Mahama said: “We suggested that the auditor-general should audit how COVID-19 funds were used because remember they took $200 million out of the stabilisation fund, then they got $1 billion from the IMF, $400 million from the World Bank and other monies used for COVID relief and when you have taken such public monies, you must account for it.”
“When you spend public money, you must be audited and, so, we asked for an audit of the COVID relief, unfortunately, the auditor-general was hounded out of office but the finance minister came to parliament and gave us an overall picture of much they spent and he said GHS19 billion was spent on COVID relief”, Mr Mahama noted.
Every Ghanaian, he said, “wants to know how that GHS19 billion was spent and it is obvious that this government is not interested in auditing that fund.” According to the 2020 flag bearer of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), it will take a new government to come and audit and say: ‘You said you spent GHS19 billion, how was the GHS19 billion spent?’”
“They say they fed how many people, for how many days? When we saw the figure for which they said they spent money providing food, it was just laughable; that’s why I say there must be accountability after every period of time and the only person that can hold them accountable is if a new dispensation comes and says: ‘How did you spend this? Explain it to the people of Ghana’; otherwise, then the intention is to go beyond eight years and sweep all this misspending under the carpet and give an easy pass to people who have made money illegally from the coffers of the people of Ghana.”
Mr Mahama noted that the government has used COVID-19 as an excuse for a lot of things, including the “current hardships that we face
According to him, the EC’s posture was amusing because IPAC was the same body that the EC has routinely referred to as toothless and thus, one which cannot dictate to them.
Speaking at a press conference held on August 24 to discuss electoral reforms that the party had arrived at after their review of the 2020 general elections, Asiedu Nketia held that IPAC in its current state was not an avenue that could address their concerns.
“Of all the people who have advised the IPAC route, none of them amuses me than that which was coming from the commission itself.
“Have you noted the number of times the Commission has told political parties that IPAC is toothless, IPAC cannot suggest anything to them, they have absolute independence?” he quizzed.
“So is it the commission that is saying that now let’s go back to that useless body? To discuss what and what will the outcome represent? So electoral commission never ceases to amuse some of us, honestly.
“On one hand, they will say IPAC cannot dictate anything to us. And when we are saying the population that put you there, let is discuss these things and let’s get them implemented, you are still calling that we should go back to IPAC,” he added.
He also accused the EC of abandoning IPAC at a point rather establishing a Committee of Eminent Persons it chose to confer with.
The General Secretary echoes sentiments expressed by the party’s flagbearer in the 2020 elections and former president of the republic, John Dramani Mahama, who described the EC’s advice to go to IPAC with their reforms as absurd.null
Speaking in an interview available to GhanaWeb during his ‘Thank You Tour’ in the Upper East Region, John Dramani Mahama described the directive of the EC as “the most absurd request.”
“Where is the inter-party advisory committee, where is their offices, where does it exist?” he added.
“IPAC is an advisory committee to the EC and IPAC is housed by the EC and it’s the EC that calls IPAC meetings. So how can you ask that the letter be given to IPAC? Who is IPAC?” he further explained in an interview with GBC URA Radio in Upper East.
The NDC flagbearer went on to state that the directive of the EC is an indication that the commission is being unreceptive to the party.
“These are some of the absurd things this committee does that make us feel it’s hostile to our party, I mean, the right place to send the letter is to the Electoral Commission,” he said.
• The former President says the NDC will win the next elections on electoral grounds
• The NDC contested the last elections in court
• According to him, the EC is acting hostile to the NDC
The presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) said the party has learnt lessons from the 2020 elections and will make sure they win the next elections on electoral grounds.
According to John Dramani Mahama, the Electoral Commission has proven on countless occasions to be hostile to the NDC in recent times hence the party has also taken strategic steps to win the next elections fairly.
He noted that one of the strategic steps of the party is to ensure that they win the next elections at the polling station and not to resort to the Supreme Court.null
The NDC lost their case against the Electoral Commission at the Supreme Court after alleging some irregularities in the declaration of the New Patriotic Party candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as president for the second term.
However, for the former president who still has ambitions of becoming a president for the second term, said the party will not slack in their bid to relinquish power from the incumbent party.
“The posture of the Electoral Commission before, during and after the elections has just shown a certain hostility against our party but we’ve learnt our lessons,” the NDC flagbearer said in an interview monitored by Ghanaweb.
He went on to say, “Elections are won on the grounds, not Supreme Court. Next time we will take due notice of that. We are going to fight and make sure the right things are done.”
John Mahama made the statement in an interview with GBC URA Radio in Upper East Region during his ‘Thank You Tour’ of the region on Tuesday.
Former Deputy General Secretary of the largest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Samuel Koku Anyidoho, has called the bluff of his expulsion letter from the party signed by the General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia.null
According to the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Atta Mills Institute, he remains a loyal member of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) as he has not received any letter of dismissal from the party.
Speaking on Okay FM’s ‘Ade Akye Abia’ Morning Show for the first time on his expulsion from the NDC, Koku Anyidoho noted that even though he has heard rumours that he has been sacked from the party, he ignored it until he heard the General Secretary of the party kept giving voice to it.
He added that he is forced to comment on his dismissal from the NDC based on the fact that the General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia has been mentioning his name and giving reference to his working relationship with President Atta Mills at the Presidency in a manner he describes as “insanely”.
“I was going to ignore it until the General Secretary kept giving voice to it and mentioning my name and making reference to my working relationship with President Mills at the Presidency; making certain insanely comment about my relationship with the President when he was not there. I have evidence of what the General Secretary said about me, and all those documents are with my lawyers,” he fumed.
He insisted that being methodical and clinical with his work ethic, he has written personal letters to the General Secretary of the NDC and other relevant persons and units in the NDC to demand the letter of his expulsion as well as the process which led to his dismissal.
” . . I wrote a personal letter to him [Asiedu Nketia] and I have copied all the necessary offices; the National Chairman, the Council of Elders, the Speaker of Parliament because he belongs to our party, Hon. E.T. Mensah [a member of the Council of State], the Minority Leader, the Volta Regional Chairman Caucus because that is the region I come from. I have been very methodical. I wrote to him last week and he has still not responded . . . he said that he has sacked me from the NDC and I have not received any letter to that effect; no process has been served on me and nobody has asked me any question,” he explained.null
Explaining his stance in the opposition NDC, Koku Anyidoho maintained that article 47 and 49 of the NDC constitution empower him to exercise his fundamental human right and freedom enshrined in the 1992 constitution which demand that he gets a fair hearing before a judgment is passed.
“There was no fair-hearing in my case. There is no evidence that someone called me before any committee; nobody called me,” he indicated.
Hinting that, it is a requirement in the NDC constitution for any party member who has been expelled to be given 14 days to challenge the decision that has been taken; thus, there should be a process that will review that decision of the disciplinary committee.
He reiterated that nobody can sack him from the NDC since he has done nothing wrong in the party; stressing that he is ready to prove beyond reasonable doubt that he has done nothing against the constitution of the NDC.
“I have no record of indiscipline and so they should tell me what is indiscipline . . . for now, nobody has expelled me from the NDC; I remain a loyal member of the NDC,” he insisted
Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has said that the government of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) under the leadership of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has, through policies implemented, delivered largely on its promise of reducing the suffering of Ghanaians “even though we have a lot more to do in that direction.”
In a Facebook post, Dr Bawumia reminded the youth that the NPP promised to “reduce the suffering Ghanaians were going through under the economic mismanagement of the NDC.”
He said after four years in office, “even though many Ghanaians are facing challenging times” which he said is as a result “of the economic implications of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the government has largely reduced the suffering of Ghanaians.
To prove his point Dr Bawumia has listed what the NPP has done to alleviate the suffering of Ghanaians since coming into office compared with the status quo ante.
Dr Bawumia’s post was made to commemorate International Youth Day which was marked on Thursday, 12 August 2021.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said on Thursday, 5 August 2021, during the New Patriotic Party’s 29th-anniversary celebration at the party’s Accra headquarters that he is confident another NPP administration will succeed his government.
“Today, the challenges that confront our country, the difficulties that we have been plunged into by the COVID-19 pandemic are going to give us the opportunity to grow stronger and stronger and that strengthening of our party and its organs means one thing, and I am very confident of it that on December 7, 2024, the new NPP presidential candidate is going to win the election”, he said.
Mr Akufo-Addo said: “Our objective and responsibility are to do whatever is necessary to make sure that that victory is forthcoming”.
“We have to continue our way forward in Ghana”.
“We cannot continue to accept the backsliding that takes place every now and then”.
“It hasn’t benefited our nation and will not benefit our nation”, Mr Akufo-Addo noted.
According to him, the “foundations that we are laying today for the prosperity of our nation will be shaken if again through our own fault we allow the path of progress to be diverted.”
Speaking at the same event, the party’s Chairman, Mr Freddie Blay, said: “I want to charge the members of the party to prioritise unity over parochial interest”.
“This is the only way that we will still be on top of government and our contract with the people of Ghana in terms of its development.”
“This is the only party that can deliver that, and we must keep it so, and we must be very united irrespective of our own personal interests,” he said
The presiding judge at the Cape Coast High Court, Justice Kwasi Boakye in his ruling on the Assin North case made reference to the 2020 election petition filed at the Supreme Court of Ghana by the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in last year’s elections, John Dramani Mahama.
In his ruling which cancelled the Parliamentary elections in Assin North, the judge, Kwasi Boakye said “the court will not permit a plaintiff to be driven from the Judgment seat without considering his right to be heard, except in cases where the cause of action is obviously and almost incontestably bad”
It was at this point that the judge made reference to Mr Mahama’s petition saying “See the case of John Dramani Mahama vs Electoral Commission and Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo Writ No J1 ?05|2021 dated 4th March 2021.”
The Cape Coast Court High court on Wednesday July 28 annulled the 2020 parliamentary election result.
A cost of 10, 000 has been awarded against the Electoral commission and 30 thousand against Joe Gyekye Quayson who until the cancellation of the result was the Assin North MP.
Justice Kwasi Boakye said Mr. Quayson was “restrained from holding himself out as Member of Parliament-elect for the Assin North constituency within the Central Region of the Republic of Ghana and further presenting himself to be sworn in as Member of Parliament-elect as such until the final determination of the petition.”
One Michael Ankoma-Nimfah, a mason and resident of Assin Bereku filed a petition against over dual citizenship.null
The Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu accused the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) of using the courts to attempt to win majority seats in Parliament.
He said there is an attempt to change the 137-137 seats for both the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the NPP by the governing party through the use of the courts.
Mr Iddrisu indicated that the NDC MPs will resist any such attempt by n filing an appeal against the Cape Coast ruling that cancelled the 2020 parliamentary election results.
Speaking at a press conference in Parliament on Wednesday July 28, he indicated that the courts are now being used to tilt the balance of power in Parliament following the equal numbers being controlled by both the New Patriotic Party and the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
“We in the Minority remain unshaken, we are confident that is our seat and will remain our seat, and we will contest the ruling. The judge erred both in law and in fact. It is a travesty of justice but what is worrying, we don’t want to believe that the courts of Ghana have been captured and that the courts of Ghana have become forums being used surreptitiously to tilt the balance of power.
“We are equal, 137-137. What is happening is the courts now being used to tilt the balance of power and to weaken time tested historical notion of checks and balances. Justice must not only be done, but must be manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done.”null
A United States –based Ghanaian Professor Kwasku Asare also expressed same concerns saying, the “ Quayson court, as in the Sakande court, erred in interpreting Article 94(2)(a) and compounded the error by equating allegiance to citizenship.
“Natural born Ghanaians owe an indivisible, indelible and permanent allegiance to Ghana and Ghana only. Those interested in this can read Judge Coke in the famous Calvin case, as further restated by Blackstone. Or if you want something with ECOWAS flavor, see Dr. Willie Ogebide v. Mr. Arigbe Osula (2004) 12 NWLR Part 886.
“Article 94(2)(a) preceded Article 8(2), which allowed dual citizenship. It is misinterpretation on steroids to hold that Article 94(2)(a) was meant to disqualify dual citizens from holding public office when that same Constitution, prior to Act 527, outlawed dual citizenship.
“The Judge must stay his ruling and refer the matter to the Supreme Court for interpretation.
“It is because of these errors, motivated by the politicization of citizenship, that we have moved for the repeal of Article 94(2)(a) and other Articles, inserted in 1996, that allow dual citizenship but impose public-office holding restrictions unrelated to Article 94(2)(a).”
• Kweku Baako has responded to Kennedy Agyapong’s statement of corruption against him
• Baako insists Agyapong has no concrete evidence as he wants the public to believe
• The veteran journalist challenged the MP to provide the evidence he claimed to be in his possession
The Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide newspaper, Kweku Baako Jnr, has responded to Kennedy Agyapong’s utterances barely a day after the legislator questioned his integrity as a veteran journalist.
Kweku Baako has described the comments as “crude nonsense”.
Kennedy Agyapong had in a submission on ‘The Seat Show’ on Net2 TV, Monday, July 19, cautioned members of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) to stay away from Kweku Baako and investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas, claiming that the two had planned the downfall of the party.
“I’m warning the NPP to be careful with Kweku Baako and Anas else they will topple their government. What has he achieved in this country? He moves around and speaks like he knows more than anyone in this world,” the Assin Central MP said while threatening to show a video to back his claim.
The legislator also served a notice that his legal tussle with Kweku Baako will not see an end soon as he believes the charges levelled against him by the journalist holds no water.
It will be recalled that Kweku Baako sued Kennedy Agyapong at the High Court on charges of defamation. The court ruled in Baako’s favour but Kennedy Agyapong has appealed the case with a ruling yet to be delivered on the matter.
Without any equivocation, Kennedy Agyapong said he will not make any payment to Baako as he remains convinced that he has a strong defense.
Responding to the allegations that he seeks the downfall of NPP, Kweku Baako in a Facebook post said the accusations meted out by Kennedy Agyapong are only empty rants. According to him, Kennedy Agyapong has no piece of evidence to substantiate his claim.
The veteran journalist further stated that the MP, despite suffering a humiliating defeat at the High Court appears to have “grown some balls” by dragging his name and seemingly attempting to cause enmity between himself and the Akufo-Addo-led government.
Parts of the statement on Facebook read, “After suffering a humiliating defeat at the High Court, and pending the outcome of his weak and incompetent appeal at the Court of Appeal, this man appears to have grown ‘some balls’ and has re-started spewing the usual ugly noises of allegations of me being involved in corruption and clandestine activities to undermine the Akufo-Addo Administration; similar allegations he proved chronically incompetent and unable to substantiate in the Court of Competent Jurisdiction.”
Pending the appeal in court, Baako indicated in the post that he [Baako] is immune to Agyapong’s “useless, ugly and noisy public stunts.” He dared that if truly the Kennedy Agyapong was a man of courage and conviction, he should make his evidence public for all to see.
“I am told he claims he has some “video evidence” of my involvement in some corrupt, illegal and criminal activities. He had none to support his bogus, malicious and mischievous allegations at the High Court. If he is truly a man of COURAGE OF CONVICTION, I challenge him to make his so-called evidence public for all to see and hear!”
Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has asked constituency Chairmen of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to remain united and not indulge in anything that will divide the party.
Remaining united, he said, would make it possible for the party to be strategically positioned to retain power in 2024.
He stated that it was only by retaining power that the NPP would be able to continue with its good work to make life better for Ghanaians.
Dr Bawumia made the call in an address read on his behalf by a former National First Vice-Chairman of the party, Mr Fred Oware, at the inauguration of a seven-member steering committee for the constituency welfare fund and workshop in Koforidua last Saturday.
The meeting, which was on the theme: “Motivating the Base, the role of the party,” brought together constituency chairmen from all the 275 constituencies throughout the country to deliberate on their welfare.
The fund is to be generated through monthly contributions by constituency chairmen to be later extended to other party officials.
According to the Vice-President, the constituency chairmen had taken a laudable initiative and called for the roping in of polling station executives of the NPP in order to generate enough funds to cater for many members in distress.
Dr Bawumia, who indicated that he would contribute to the fund, said there were many members who had been working tirelessly for the party at the base.
The National Chairman of the party, Mr Freddie Blay, said he was excited about the establishment of the welfare fund and indicated that it had come at the right time to cater for the needs of its members and called for its sustainability.
The National Organiser of the party, Mr Sammy Awuku, said he was worried about the use of funeral grounds as a platform to campaign for the party’s flag-bearer position and called for an end to such a campaign.
The Chairman of the NPP Constituency Officers Welfare Group, Dr Godfred Akyea-Darkwah, explained that the fund would welcome contributions of the base in order to reduce dependency of the party on government.
A former Energy Minister, Mr Boakye Agyarko, said it was necessary to take good care of party members, stressing that “the party must also understand the needs of the people.”
In an interview with the Daily Graphic, some of the constituency chairmen expressed their appreciation for the institution of the welfare fund which they said could cater for their medical needs.
•Boakye Agyarko says serving the country must be the ultimate aim of any politician
•He says serving the country requires sacrifices and that every politician must embrace it
•He says the NDC unlike the NPP has not accepted this reality
Boakye Agyarko, the former Energy Minister has said the desire to serve and contribute to the development of the country should be the prime motivation for anyone who decides to venture into politics.
According to him, serving the country requires sacrifices and that before deciding to veer into politics, one should recognize that the national interest will at each reign supreme.
Addressing members of the UPSA chapter of the Tertiary Students Confederacy (TESCON), Boakye Agyarko said that while the majority of the members of the New Patriotic Party has embraced this concept, the same cannot be said for their opponent, the National Democratic Congress.null
He asserts that the NDC has not come to terms with this notion as their members, he claims to hold a divergent view to what he is advancing.
He beseeched Heaven not to entrust the running of the country into the hands of any NDC leader as they will act in ways that in his wisdom will delay the scupper the country’s progress.
“All of us participate in politics to build a nation. A nation that can provide the greater comfort that we are looking for. A better future for ourselves and our succeeding generations. That is why we all participate in politics. I can imagine that some of our friends from the opposite side may have a different reason for getting into politics. The NDC think differently but not us.
“We participate in politics for the full purpose of building a good nation that we can live in. The primary assumption here is that the goodness we are looking for comes from good governance. Indeed, the Bible teaches us that when the righteous rule, the people rejoice but when the wicked rule, the people groan. It is not only Christians who believe this. Muslims also have their teachings.
“May the Lord bless and not give us the rule of NDC. We are going to achieve good governance by having a party such as ours in power. If we are going to be in power, we have to look at our dynamics,” he said.null
Boakye Agyarko in motivating the youth to bear the cross of Ghana and NPP said that being a member of the party comes with its unique challenge but the willingness to serve should always take precedence.
“Serving this party I can tell you is not an easy task. It involves a lot of difficulties because you are working with humans with various interests,” he said
“Regardless of the challenges, I will rather belong to this party and be ill-treated or maltreated than join any other organization out there calling itself a political party. When I go to Boiling Point on Oman FM, I greet party people and I say my party is right or wrong I stand by it. When I say this, it doesn’t mean your party will not wrong you, for NPP they will wrong you but it’s your party and I urge you that anytime your party wrongs you, have it as your mantra that it’s your party,” he said.
The National Democratic Congress says it will resist all attempts by the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) to use technicalities to remove Assin North Member of Parliament (MP), Joe Gyaakye Quayson, from Office.
A Cape Coast High Court on Tuesday deferred judgment on the matter to the 28th of June because the MP had invoked the supervisory jurisdiction of the Supreme court on the matter.
Even though the Supreme Court has set the 27th of July for its decision, National Chairman of the NDC, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, says the people of Assin North should not be denied a representation because the NPP needs to increase its numbers in Parliament.
At a post-court interview with the media, the NDC chair stressed they have identified the machinations against the MP and the party has been very worried about the direction the case was going.
The NDC, he indicates, has been very uncomfortable with the judge’s earlier decision to pronounce judgment on the 14th of July and their belief was that there were some pieces of evidence that would have been adduced before the court if the court had allowed oral submissions to be made before it.
“If he had allowed oral evidence to be adduced during the trial process, we could have justified why we think that our member of Parliament for Assin North was duly and properly elected as well,” he stated.
Mr. Ofosu Ampofo explained to the press that the NDC’s legal team and the Vetting Committee of the party thoroughly examined documentation of all those who were domiciled outside the country and were seeking to contest elections in the country.
He claimed: “We went through their documentation and we were satisfied. In fact, that committee was chaired by no other person than the current speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon. Alban Bagbin. The venerable personality scrutinized all the processes of our legal team to satisfy the party that Joe Quayson, the MP for Assin North, was very qualified under the electoral laws of Ghana and should contest the elections. And again, the issues were even raised before the electoral commission and the commission also adjudicated on the matter and cleared him even before he filed his nomination.”
He further stated with emphasis that the NDC had a firm belief that the back and forth in court was a ploy to reduce the numbers of the NDC in parliament.
Mr. Ofosu Ampofo further submitted that Mr. Joe Quayson, having come from Canada, another jurisdiction, references to the jurisprudence of Canada was also critical in deciding the matter.
He says given the opportunity for the legal team of the Assin North MP to give oral submissions, they could adduce evidence as to when Joe Quayson actually renounced his citizenship, with all the documents that would be attached.
He said: “Our legal team has them and this will go a long way to exonerate him and justify why the party feels and why the EC itself accepted the nomination for him to file and contest.”
He added, “mind you, this is an election petition, the people of Assin North queued from morning to evening to elect an MP of their choice and we will not allow any technicalities whatsoever to be used to deprive us of our MP”
“We know all the machinations that are going on. They are very comfortable with the hanged parliament the country has now and they are trying every possible means, including legal gymnastics, to deprive the NDC of our numbers we have in Parliament.”
Michael Ankomah Nimfah, a resident of Assin North, petitioned a Cape Coast High Court over the qualification of the Assin North MP. According to him, the MP did not qualify to contest the 2020 elections at that time he filed to contest the elections
The General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia says his party is helping the Chief Justice, Kwasi Anin-Yeboah to redeem his image following bribery allegations levelled against him.null
The NDC Chief Scribe says the NDC’s press conference earlier today was to help analyse measures to adopt to help protect the credibility of the Judicial Service which is being soiled by bribery allegations.
There have been allegations against Chief justice by one lawyer Akwasi Afrifa who claims Anin-Yeboah demanded US $5 million from Ogyeedom Obranu Kwesi Atta VI.
This became public when the Kumasi-based lawyer responded to the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council (GLC) after a petition was brought against him by Ogyeedom Obranu Kwesi Atta VI.
In his response, Akwasi Afrifa alleged that the chief told him at the end of July 2020 that friends of his who were highly connected politically had taken him to see the Chief Justice who agreed to help him win his case on the condition that he drops him (Akwesi Afrifa) as the lawyer handling a case for him and engage Akoto Ampaw Esq in his stead.
“He [the chief] further informed me that the Chief Justice had demanded a bribe of USD$5,000,000.00 for a successful outcome of his case and that he had already paid USD$500,000.00 to the Chief Justice”, Akwesi Afrifa alleged Ogyeedom Obranu Kwesi Atta VI had told him.
But addressing the press at the party’s headquarters, General Secretary for the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketia urged the Chief Justice to step aside for investigations to be launched into the matter.
But reacting to the presser, Asiedu Nketia said “We [the NDC] want to help the Chief Justice to redeem his image.”
“We called the press to suggest ways the Chief Justice can use to clear himself. Probably someone wants to drag his name in the mud. We are rather helping him because the allegations are from someone and we don’t know who is telling the truth,” he added.null
To him, the Chief whose matter is in the court may be taking advantage of his relationship with the Chief Justice to dent his image, adding ” so when we are asking questions we are helping to bring clarity to the issue.”
The NDC has charged the General Legal Council to stay away from investigating the bribery allegations leveled against Chief justice.
Asiedu Nketiah believes CHRAJ can do a better job than the Criminal Investigative Department of the Ghana Police Service the Anin-Yeboah has tasked to probe the matter.
At the press conference, Asiedu Nketiah stated, “We disagree with the referral of these allegations to the General Legal Council’s Disciplinary Committee by the Chief Justice, for the sole reason that it is an offshoot of a body Chaired by the person at the center of these allegations-the Chief Justice.”
“The likelihood for an impartial and balanced investigation by them into this matter would be quite minimal so long as the Chief Justice remains at post,” he argued.
He added, “Conversely, CHRAJ, which has an enviable reputation of looking into similar cases of alleged corruption against highly placed state and government officials would be better placed to conduct such a serious inquiry.”
Below is the NDC statement;null
SPEECH DELIVERED BY HON. JOHNSON ASIEDU NKETIA, GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS ON ACCUSATIONS OF BRIBERY AGAINST THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE REPUBLIC OF GHANA.
13th July, 2021.
Good afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen of the media. Let me welcome you to this urgent encounter at which we intend to share our thoughts on a matter of grave national importance.
In the last few days, we have learnt about damning allegations made against the Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana, His Lordship Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah, by a prominent Lawyer, Akwasi Afrifa Esq., to the effect that his client whose case he was conducting had informed him that the Chief Justice demanded a bribe of USD$5 million to fix the verdict of a case before the Supreme Court. He also alleges that the Chief Justice demanded the replacement of he Akwasi Afrifa with Akoto Ampaw Esq. as Lawyer in the case as a precondition for ensuring victory in the case for his client.
We have also taken notice of a denial by the Chief in question, Nana Ogyeedom Obranu Kwesi Atta VI and the Chief Justice of the said allegations and the subsequent request of the latter for investigations into the matter by the CID of the Ghana Police Service.
Distinguished friends from the media, the allegations made against the Chief Justice are very grave and rock the very foundations of the Judiciary, which is an indispensable and independent arm of government. Any suggestion that the head of such an institution has sought to compromise his office to undermine the integrity of judgements made by the courts, warrants the most serious attention. This is because any doubts harbored over the integrity of the Judiciary and its leadership, has the potential to completely erode public confidence in the administration of justice in Ghana and our governance institutions as a whole.
Over the years, we have collectively worked hard to build a Judiciary with an enviable reputation as a country. Our Judiciary has produced some of the best Jurists on the African continent and I dare say, in the world. Ghanaian Jurists have served in top positions in the judiciaries of other African countries and in many reputable international institutions. The role an effective, independent and impartial Judiciary plays in attracting investment, ensuring national stability and improvement in the general well-being of the citizenry cannot be over emphasised.
As the political tradition that birthed the fourth republic, we are deeply concerned that if this matter is not handled with utmost transparency and the required seriousness, it could compromise public confidence in the judiciary and roll back the many gains that we have made in our forward march as a viable democratic state.null
In this regard, and without taking sides or commenting on the merit or otherwise of the said allegations of bribery against the Chief Justice, we believe that an investigation by the Police CID would be woefully inadequate to assure the Ghanaian public that a thorough inquiry has been conducted into the matter.
We are of the considered view that the recent history of the Police CID with respect to investigations into allegations against high-ranking officials of the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government would not afford the sort of confidence that must be engendered in an investigation such as this considering the elevated position of the person against whom these allegations have been made.
We recall how corruption cases like the Australia Visa fraud scandal, the Galamsey fraud scandal, the 500 missing excavators scandal, just to mention a few ended in clear cover-ups when handled by the Police CID. The magnitude and gravity of this matter calls for utmost transparency and confidence building which the CID cannot muster at the moment.
We in the NDC hold the view, that though these allegations have a component of criminality, it is in equal measure about alleged misconduct on the part of a judge and as such it would ordinarily fall within the ambit of the Judicial Service to take steps to unravel the truth about this matter and take disciplinary action if proven to be true. This is exactly what was done in the bribery expose’ of ace investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas against some Judges few years ago.
Ladies and gentlemen of the media, the difficulty however with this is that the investigations would concern the Chief Justice who is the subject of the bribery allegations in this matter and in whom disciplinary authority against Judicial Officers is vested under Section 18 of the Judicial Service Act. Therefore, good governance dictates that the Chief Justice steps aside during the pendency of the investigations by the Judicial Service relative to the issue of alleged misconduct on his part as a Supreme Court Judge. The Chief Justice cannot be a judge in his own cause hence cannot setup a committee to investigate allegations of misconduct against himself.
Also, we think that due to the considerable public interest involved in this matter, another effective and transparent approach in the circumstance would be a full-blown public inquiry. This can be done by invoking Article 278 of the 1992 Constitution under which Parliament can by a resolution compel the President to set up a Commission of Inquiry to look into the matters at hand in a transparent manner and make a faithful determination thereof.
Friends, we are now confronted with a very dicey situation, where it is the word of lawyer Akwasi Afrifa on the one hand against the word of the Chief Justice and the Chief who is alleged to have paid the bribe in question on the other hand. As I have already explained, this issue has dire consequences for the reputation of not just the Judiciary but our revered Chieftaincy institution and the country as a whole. The question is, whose account among the three should we believe as a country? Who is telling us the truth? Is it the Chief Justice and Nana Ogyeedom or is it Lawyer Kwasi Afrifa? We believe that only credible and transparent investigations can establish the truth in this matter. And we hold the opinion that the transparent approach of a Public enquiry is the best way to go. This approach we believe is in the interest of the Chief Justice who stands accused and his accuser.
Conversely, CHRAJ, which has an enviable reputation of looking into similar cases of alleged corruption against highly placed state and government officials would be better placed to conduct such a serious inquiry.null
We also disagree with the referral of these allegations to the General Legal Council’s Disciplinary Committee by the Chief Justice, for the sole reason that it is an offshoot of a body Chaired by the person at the center of these allegations-the Chief Justice. The likelihood for an impartial and balanced investigation by them into this matter would be quite minimal so long as the Chief Justice remains at post. We therefore believe that the GLC should stay its hands over this matter pending the final determination of the issue by independent state organizations cloaked with requisite authority to do so.
Best practice would require that the Chief Justice steps aside temporarily until the matters are looked into and a clear outcome emerges and we believe this instance calls for such an action.
Friends from the media, in making these calls, we are guided by the supreme interest of governance and the preservation of the image of critical state institutions like the Judiciary and its leaders especially the Chief Justice. No iota of doubt must remain about its integrity and credibility and it is absolutely imperative that everything is done to guarantee this.
The former 2nd Vice Chairperson of the largest opposition party NDC, Anita De Soso has called on the general public to say a word of prayer for President Nana Akufo-Addo. Anita De Soso says, what is happening now in Ghana is not normal under President Akufo-Addo which he needs deliverance.
Speaking to Omanhene Yaw Adu Boakye of Kessben Maakye, she noted that President Akufo-Addo is under serious calamities and he needs prayers from all Ghanaians. Madam De Soso cautioned Akufo-Addo’s government not to incur the people’s wrath after news broke to pay salaries to Spouses of President.
Former Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Okoe Boye has admonished his party to be awakened to the tactics of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in pitching Ghanaians against the government’s decision to pay salaries to First and Second Ladies.
Parliament has officially approved the payment of salaries to wives of the President and Vice President.
However, the government’s decision has been condemned by some members of the general public.
With some arguing for and against the decision, a member of the NDC, Sam George has threatened court action against the decision.
Sam George, the Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram, argued; ”As far as I am aware there was no arrangement for that, the President’s wife and the vice President’s wife are not article 71 holders.
“I am a Member of Parliament, I personally do not subscribe to that, whether it is an NDC President or an NPP President, your wife is not a Public Officer, you wife is your wife. Are we also going to say that the Spouse of the Chief Justice , the spouse of the Speaker must also be paid? Where do we draw the line. Already they get allowances, they get protection from the state at the expense of the taxpayer and I don’t have a problem with that.”
Discussing the issue on Peace FM’s ”Kokrokoo”, Dr. Okoe Boye stated that the NDC has developed a strategy that is defeating the purpose for the Parliamentary approval of the First and Second Ladies’ salaries.
According to him, the NDC is waging an ”emotional war” and so called the NPP to counteract the opposition’s cunning ways in order to help Ghanaians comprehend the significance of the government’s decision.
”..what I have realized that the NDC is waging an emotional war, our response sometimes must be an emotional strategy. When I say ’emotional strategy’, we can consider options like coming out to tell Parliament that get a bill and now cancel everything so that we listen to the kind of comments that will come from their wives”, he said.
He expounded that the opposition party has decided to ”target the hearts of people”, therefore the NPP ”must be conscious and quickly adjust ourselves, because on the books, everything is right. It went to Parliament…but they’re targeting people on their heart and, as a psychologist, I know when the hearts of people are targeted; it’s difficult to get them to appreciate reasoning”.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has once again taken a swipe at former President John Dramani Mahama over the construction of some interchanges in the country.
According to the President, his government is building three interchanges with an amount of $289 million, while the erstwhile Mahama administration built only one interchange with almost the same amount.
President Akufo-Addo made the comparison when he commissioned the four-tier Pokuase Interchange on Friday, July 9, 2021.
“It is important to put on record that the original contract design [for the Pokuase interchange] was for a three-tier interchange, however through efficient management by my government the interchange was modified to a four-tier interchange within the same contract sum.”
“Indeed, $289 million has been used by the Akufo-Addo government to construct three interchanges (at Pokuase, Obetsebi Lamptey, and Tamale) as opposed to $260 million used by the Mahama government to construct only the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange. These are further examples of the fact that we in the NPP are good protectors of the public purse,” he argued.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, President Akufo-Addo used the opportunity to appeal to drivers to adhere to all road safety measures to ensure the safe use of the facility.
“I appeal to the users of this facility, especially drivers, to adhere to the various road safety measures put in place for the safe use of the facility. The modernization of Ghana is steadily gathering momentum, and I entreat all Ghanaians to join hands in building the Ghana we want.”
About the project The Pokuase Interchange is a four-tier interchange situated at Pokuase Junction, connecting motorists to Awoshie, Kwabenya, Amasaman and Achimota.
The project is being undertaken by Messrs China Zhongmei Engineering Company Limited.
The sod-cutting ceremony for work to start was done in July 2018, with the project initially expected to be completed in October 2020, but that was changed to March 2021.
The government, in May 2021, promised that the project would be completed in the first week of July 2021.
Regardless of the roles presidential spouses may play in supporting their husbands, Prof Ransford Gyampo of the University of Ghana has said “I personally do not think such roles should warrant salaries”.
It recently came to light, through anti-graft campaigner Vitus Azeem, that the Article 71 Emoluments Committee has recommended the payment of cabinet minister-level salaries to the presidential spouses.
In an article on the subject, Prof Gyampo said: “Their husbands are paid well enough to be able to cater for them”, arguing: “The current situation, not backed by law, would also open the floodgates to deepen more nepotistic appointments to the offices of the First and Second Ladies in a manner that may not augur well for the fight against corruption”.
Read Prof Ransford Gyampo’s full article below:
1. There may be nothing wrong to evolve a convention to pay some allowances to the wives of former heads of state, who may have passed away. I am told Rawlings actually [started] this gesture and out of his sense of magnanimity and compassion Kufuor continued, and it’s been extended to include the wives of sitting Presidents and Veeps. The payment of these allowances over the years, have not been backed by any specific law but have been treated as benefits of the principals themselves.
2. The current Ntiamoah Baidu Commission, I am told, only made a recommendation to formalise the already existing arrangement, and this was approved by Parliament. It may therefore not be entirely accurate for anyone to suggest that President Akufo-Addo has personally decidedthat the first and second ladies should be paid like cabinet ministers.
3. Those in support of this whole idea believe it makes sense to give some allowances or salaries to wives of those top officials who actually work and support what their husbands do. It’s been argued that some run foundations in support of the poor and others represent their husbands at public functions etc. Given the supposed role they play, some believe it shouldn’t be a big deal for the First and Second Ladies to be paid SALARIES, not allowances.
4. But to my mind, the Rawlings-Kufuor gesture of paying some ALLOWANCES to the wives of former heads of state, who may have passed on, out of excess compassion, must be distinguished from paying SALARIES to the wives of sitting Presidents and Veeps. This is because the Offices of the First and Second Ladies are merely ceremonial. They are dysfunctional institutions that are not provided for in our Statute Books.
5. Regardless of the role they may play in supporting their husbands, I personally do not think such roles they play should warrant salaries. Their husbands are paid well enough to be able to cater for them. The current situation, not backed by law, would also open the floodgates to deepen more nepotistic appointments to the offices of the First and Second Ladies in a manner that may not augur well for the fight against corruption.
6. But if as a nation, we think we have gotten to that epoch in our governance process where such personalities have to be paid salaries, the decision shouldn’t be based on such a porous recommendation and an illegal parliamentary approval process. Rather, we must do the following:
A. Agree on the exact and specific roles to be played by First and Second Ladies to shape the conduct of governance in Ghana’s body politic.
B. Agree on the Number of Staff they are entitled to work with and their specific job descriptions.
C. Determine what other logistics and incentives they may be entitled to and make provisions for these in budgets
D. Amend the list of article 71 officeholders to include First and Second Ladies
E. Empower them to work also as public officials
Until these are done, we must prioritise and stop the pressure we keep piling on the Consolidated Fund.
7. On the loans for MPs to procure new vehicles, this is sad and only goes to typify our feature as extravagant poor people. Some public officials purchase second-hand vehicles that are ten years old and still pride themselves with the “newness” of such vehicles which they call “brand new second-hand”. Other public officials keep their official vehicles for four years and purchase them at a pittance afterwards.
8. If loans can truly be sourced for this very wastefully needless purpose of buying brand new vehicles, such a facility must be given to the Korlebu Teaching Hospital to procure needed health infrastructure, and bill patients who go use such facilities to defray the loan. The fact that the loan may be re-paid by the MPs shouldn’t be the focus of any discussion. For, as constituent servants, MPs cannot continue to live in luxury whiles hospitals for their constituents remain death traps. If there is any loan facility, it must be given to only new MPs.
9. We must rethink our priorities as a country. Let the Consolidated Fund be freed from politically luxurious and frivolous expenses and let there be enough resources for President Akufo Addo to use in embarking projects that benefit ordinary needs of the Ghanaian and leaves a good legacy.
It has emerged that some Members of Parliament (MPs), most of who are first timers, go to the House in Uber.
MP for South Dayi constituency, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, revealed this on Adom FM’s morning show Dwaso Nsem, Thursday, stating he has text messages as evidence to back his claims.
“There are a lot of members, especially on the Minority side. We have our platforms where they always complain that they don’t have an official car and come to work in Uber. I can show you those messages to prove that they are not making this issue up,” he said.
He said his personal car for instance was acquired through a loan he took from Parliament in the 7th parliament.
But he said for someone who does not have an official car, it would be very difficult to travel to their constituencies and discharge their duties.
The Finance Ministry on Tuesday, July 6, presented to Parliament, a request by the government for a $28 million loan from the National Investment Bank to procure vehicles for the 275 MPs and another for a $3.5 million car loan for members of the 8th Council of State for them to purchase vehicles.
Addressing the floor of the House, Deputy Finance Minister, Abena Osei Asare, said that the medium-term $28 million loans are to be paid back by the members in the course of their four-year term as MPs.
This request has, however, been condemned by members of the general public and scores on social media. According to many, procuring such a loan amidst the adverse effects of Covid-19 on the economy is not the right step to be taken by the government.
Mr Dafeamekpor stated the loan is not compulsory, adding the MPs have the choice to take or not.
“MPs are the only category of article 71 holders who are not given an official vehicle. So if the agreement is that we are given a loan to purchase official vehicles, I think it is very wrong. My position is that the government should take steps and get us official vehicles to perform the functions of our office in the next four years like it is done for all the other categories,” he said.
NPP General Secretary, Sam Pyne, has rebuked the Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram, Sam George over his comments during the ”March for Justice” demonstration by the National Democratic Congress on Tuesday.
The demonstrators went out in their numbers to petition the President and Parliament about certain unpleasant happenings in the country.
Clad in red, the protesters held placards with various inscriptions including, “Akufo-Addo, you are a dictator”, “Kum Yen Preko”, “We feel your silence Akufo-Addo and Bawumia”, “Ghanaian lives matter”, “Ahmed Suale deserved to live”, “No justice for the dead”, “no peace, #WeAreAllKaaka” among others.
Addressing the crowd before the start of the demonstration, Sam George charged the protesters to treat any soldier they meet on their way as “criminal” stressing the Military is not invited for any form of protection.
” . . we had an arrangement with the IGP on the routes we’re using. The rules of this country say that crowd control is the job of the Police. In fact, part of this demonstration is because Military men were used in crowd control and they shot and killed unarmed Ghanaians.
“Yet, some people in government had a meeting last night and decided that, despite the presence of the Police, they intend to bring in the Military to meet us halfway. I am sending a message to you, to the Chief of Army Staff, to call back his men. We’re working with the Police . . . we have had no consultation with the Military. Anybody in military uniform that we meet on the road, we will treat as a criminal,” he said.
Sam Pyne, speaking on Peace FM’s “Kokrokoo”, wondered what motivated Sam George to make such statements.
To him, Sam George may be suffering from ‘Kpokpo Gbli Gbli’.
“Justice of the Supreme Court said when politicians stand on a platform, then they are hit by Kpokpo Gbli Gbli, so, well; maybe let’s consider it in that manner,” he stated.
With regard to the NDC claims on insecurity, Sam Pyne replied; ”Yes, we have challenges with security. There is still crime. People are dying with others injured and all that but that’s also not a justification for us to create the impression that everything has collapsed in Ghana. Because the moment that people can go to work and come back home . . . and we will create an impression as if you go out to buy porridge, you won’t return home, then it’s very disturbing.”
• The NDC has received the backing of the Ghana Police Service to protest on July 6
• The party has invited the #FixTheCountry campaigners to join them
• But the the campaigners have turned down the invite
The National Democratic Congress has extended an invitation to the #FixTheCountry campaigners to join its “March for Justice’ protest scheduled for July 6, 2021.
The #FixTheCountry campaigners have been trying to hold a protest but the Ghana Police Service has become their impediment.
While the police have failed to provide them with security in accordance with the laws of the country to demonstrate, the NDC has managed to get the green light to protest on Tuesday.
Following the granting of their request, George Opare Addo, the National Youth Organizer has urged members of the #FixTheCountry campaign to leverage on the NDC’s platform and make known their grievances.null
“I have criticised clearly the decision of the government to prevent the #FixTheCountry movement from embarking on their constitutionally mandated right to demonstrate. I believe that with the police agreeing that they will be around to provide us security, it is time that they also look at the issues pertaining to the fix the country movement.
“But I am asking everybody, especially members of the Fix The Country movement to join hands with the NDC. We are fighting for almost the same thing. I will speak with their leadership and tell them where they can align with our views and opinions so that they come and then whatever they want to do they can use our platform to convey their message,” he said on Citi FM.
The invitation was however turned down by Oliver Barker-Vomawor who said that joining the NDC will be an affront to the principles on which the campaign was birthed.
He said, “one of the things we need to be mindful of is that #FixTheCountry is not a group or entity. When individuals speak, they speak on their own mandate, so I cannot speak for the collective but I think we need to discuss the role of all political actors, including the government and the NDC as well, as to their engagement in the mess we find ourselves.”
“Now if they are coming forth honestly and acknowledging their role in the mess, that’s fine but if they shift blame, then I don’t think that it aligns with the questions we are asking because we have said that the problems have been with the successive governments and that puts the NDC squarely in what we think is wrong with how this country has been run for some years. So just because they have been granted the chance to protest and ours was denied doesn’t mean our interests necessarily align,” he added.
The national youth organiser of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr George Opare Addo, has said the Ghana Police Service, at a meeting on Friday, 2 July 2021, “withdrew” its “earlier letter that they sent to us” saying they cannot provide security for the party’s ‘march for justice’ event “and they’ve agreed that it’s our legal right to demonstrate, so, they will provide the necessary protection that we need for the demonstration”.
“What we did at the meeting is that we agreed the routes we’ll be using for the demonstration”, Mr Opare Addo told Charles Akrofi on Class91.3FM’s 505 news programme on Friday, 2 July 2021.
The Inspector-General of Police, Mr James Oppong-Boanuh, wrote to the leadership of the youth wing of the NDC on Friday and invited them for the meeting at 4 pm.
The letter, signed by the Director-General/Operations of the Ghana Police Service, COP Kwaku Boadu-Peprah, said: “The Inspector-General of Police respectfully requests a meeting with the leadership of the demonstration, today, 2 July 2021, at 4:00 pm at the national police headquarters, Accra, for further discussion on security implications and arrangements for the intended demonstration”.
Prior to the meeting with the IGP, The youth wing had warned that it would defy a no-demonstration order by the police and proceed with the march on 6 July.
The group wrote to the Ghana Police Service informing it about the march in a letter on 30 June 2021.
The letter, signed by the NDC’s national youth organiser, Mr George Opare Addo, indicated that “this protest is to demand justice for all persons killed and brutalised by state-sponsored thuggery and/or adventurism by police and military forces”.
But the Ghana Police Service, in a letter signed by the Greater Accra Regional Commander, DCOP E. A. Sakyi stated: “The Accra Regional Police Command acknowledged receipt of your letter dated 30th June 2021 on the above subject matter [‘A March For Justice’ demonstration and street protest] and wish to inform you that restrictions imposed by the Executive Instrument (E.I) 395 to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has still not been lifted.
“The Regional Command also refers you to section 4 of the Public Order Act 1994 (ACT 49) particularly concerning Public Health”.
“The Command, therefore, cannot provide you with the needed security during your intended demonstration and street protest please,” the letter added.
But in a counter-statement signed by Mr Opare Addo on 1 July 2021, the group indicated that the police does not have the legal right to restrain them from embarking on the demonstration.
“The general public is hereby informed that section 4 of Act 491 specifically clothes the Minister for the Interior with the power to impose a curfew in the country, and so far as we are concerned, no part of Accra is under curfew for which reason demonstration cannot be held as the police erroneously want us to believe”.
The statement continued: “The weakest of all reasons cited by the police was its reference to EI 395 in its letter. For the records, EI 395 was birthed on the strength of section 2 of the Imposition of Restriction Act, 2020 (Act 1012) and gazetted on December 23, 2020.
“It is instructive to note that section 4 of Act 1012 provides for ‘a restriction imposed under subsection (1) of the section (2)’ and shall be for a period of not more than three months. If the police was not meticulous and not preoccupied with petty partisan politics, it would have known that EI 395 expired in March 2021. In effect, there is no law as EI 395 to be adhered to”.
“We want to inform the general public, who have received notice of the ‘A MARCH FOR JUSTICE’ street protest with enthusiasm and eagerness that there is no law which gives the Ghana Police Service the power to stop demonstrations or protests”.
“In other words, the power to stop lawful demonstration does not rest with the police”.
“We have taken a decision to stand in for the several young people at the mercy of the injustices of the system; with lost hopes, no jobs, no opportunities and yet being killed and oppressed. The government must work for the generality of the people whose taxes finance the luxurious living and wishes of a select few in the public service,” the statement added
The main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has called for the dismissal of the Municipal Chief Executive of Ejura-Sekyedumase, Mohammed Salisu Bamba following the lynching of social media activist Ibrahim Kaaka Mohammed and the subsequent shooting and killing of two protesters by soldiers a day after.
They are also calling for the MCE’s arrest and subsequent prosecution to serve as a deterrent to others.
Additionally, the NDC, which paid a consolation visit to the bereaved families on Thursday, 1 July 2021, say the suspects involved in the lynching of Kaaka, who, according to the party, are known bodyguards of the MCE, must, as well be prosecuted.
They also called for the interdiction of the municipal police commander, DSP Philip Kojo Hammond, as well as the military commander who was in charge of the military team that helped the police team to handle the demonstrators.
The National Communications Officer of the NDC, Mr Sammy Gyamfi, who led the delegation to visit the bereaved families as well as the injured, said the shooting incident was a state-sponsored killing and called for justice for the deceased and the injured victims.
The party also issued a statement on its concerns:
NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS CONSOLES FAMILIES OF VICTIMS OF STATE-SPONSORED EJURA KILLINGS AND CALLS FOR SWIFT PROSECUTION OF ALL CULPRITS INVOLVED
The Functional Executive Committee of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has this morning dispatched a delegation to the town of Ejura in the Ashanti Region.
The visit comes in the wake of the mindless killing of Mohammed Ibrahim alias Kaaka by known assailants said to be bodyguards of the Municipal Chief Executive of Ejura, Mohammed Salisu Bamba and the subsequent murder of two other individuals, namely, Nasiru Yussif and Murtala Mohammed by a combined team of military and police personnel.
The NDC condemns, in no uncertain terms, the killing of “Kaaka”, a social media activist who has been using the power of social media to champion change and development in the Ejura community. Kaaka’s activism predates the Akufo-Addo government, as he has always been known to be an influencer who highlights the ills of his society in dynamic ways to achieve the desired development for his community.
For him to have, therefore, been ambushed and killed by persons believed to be bodyguards of the Municipal Chief Executive for Ejura, who accused him of making the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government unpopular, is most unfortunate and reprehensible to say the least.
As if this incident was not dastardly enough, the youth of Ejura, who took to the streets to protest the killing of their compatriot were then met with the brute force of uniformed military and police officers, who pointed their guns into the crowd, took aim and shot into the unarmed, harmless protesting civilians, killing two people instantly and injuring several others.
These incidents, yet again, highlight the institutionalisation of violence and state-sponsored thuggery that have taken center-stage under the leadership of President Akufo-Addo. The NDC has constantly bemoaned how state security has been abused and used as a veritable weapon of oppression against Ghanaians by the tyrannical Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government.
The NDC joins other well-meaning Ghanaians in moral society, the media and from all walks of life, in condemning the gruesome killing of the three individuals, and thus demand that justice be served without delay in order to appease the souls of the departed, their families and to serve as a lesson to all who think they can act criminally and brazenly get away with same.
Even as we console and support the families whose loved ones were murdered and injured few days ago, we wish to call for the following immediate actions from the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government:
1. The immediate prosecution of persons who have been arrested and all the other assailants of “Kaaka” who are known associates of the MCE for Ejura, Mohammed Salisu Bamba.
2. The immediate dismissal and prosecution of the Municipal Chief Executive for Ejura, Mohammed Salisu Bamba, who as Chairman of the Municipal Security Council, sanctioned the deployment of armed military and police personnel who shot into the crowd of peaceful protestors and murdered the two young men in cold blood.
3. The immediate interdiction and prosecution of the district police commander and the army commander who sanctioned the said mindless deployment of the trigger-happy military and police officers on the day.
4. The interdiction, arrest and prosecution of the military and police officers who were deployed on the day, especially those caught on camera squatting and shooting directly into the crowd of protesters.
The NDC’s delegation comprises Comrade Joshua Hamidu Akamba, National Organiser, Comrade Sammy Gyamfi, National Communication Officer, Dr. Hanna Louisa Bisiw, National Women Organiser, Comrade George Opare Addo, National Youth Organiser, Comrade Peter Boamah Otokunor, Deputy General Secretary, Comrade Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, Director of Elections, Mr. Haruna Rashied, Director of IT, Comrade Kobby Barlon, Deputy National Organiser, Comrade Ruth Dela Sedoh, Deputy National Women Organiser, and Comrade Edem Agbana, Deputy National Youth Organiser. Signed,
Former Central Regional Minister, Kwamena Duncan, has slammed the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) for linking the death of an activist at Ejura, Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Kaaka’, to President Akufo-Addo’s administration.
The NDC Communications Officer, Sammy Gyamfi has blamed the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the killing of Ibrahim Mohammed a.k.a ‘Kaaka’.
Sammy Gyamfi is convinced the mob that attacked Macho Kaaka are members of the ruling party stressing the killing of the activist is an indication of insecurity under the leadership of President Nana Akufo-Addo.
In an interview with Okay FM, Sammy Gyamfi alleged; “There is hardship in the country and people are afraid to talk because they are afraid for their lives. Today, they have killed Kaaka. NPP killed Kaaka. Kaaka stays in Ejura and has been on this #fixthecountry campaign. He has been talking about abandoned projects. Before he was attacked by a mob, he announced that he has been threatened by the known NPP members. He even published the threats. He was beaten by a mob.”
Ex-Prez Mahama’s Statement On Ejura Killing
Former President John Dramani Mahama has also called on the President to direct an immediate de-escalation of the situation at Ejura in the Ashanti Region.
“I add my voice to calls for calm following the shooting to death of two persons and the injury to many in Ejura today, following the murder of youth activist Ibrahim ‘Kaaka’ Mohammed. I have just seen a video of the firing of live ammunition into a crowd by persons wearing military attire, after the burial of the murdered youth activist.
“There must be a very thorough investigation of both the murder of the youth activist and the security rules of engagement, which resulted in the shooting to death of the two others,” Mr. Mahama stated on his website.
Kwamena Fires NDC
Discussing the issue on Peace FM’s ”Kokrokoo”, Kwamena Duncan blasted the NDC for scoring political points with the Ejura incident.
He questioned the party’s motive saying, “the NDC and President Mahama, are they telling us that, during that time when such incident occurred, the NPP should have issued a statement to say President Mahama and the NDC did it? 2014, there was an incident. They have always taken Ghanaians that these are persons or people who forget easily. I mean they will forget easily and therefore we will take advantage of their nature where they tend to forget. At the time, no NPP member issued a statement saying we hold NDC responsible for what has happened because we didn’t have basis for that”.
”When people want to ride on the back of bloodshedding to gain some political mileage, it’s difficult to understand. The incident that has happened, drawing attention to it; well and good but, when you say ‘warns Police and blames government for death of activist’, is that how you intend drawing attention to what has happened? If you want to draw attention, is that how you do it? When government neither stood left nor right, when government has absolutely no hand; why do we want to rush?”, he fumed.
He, however, challenged the oppostion party to make public any evidence they have to corroborate their claims.
”What information does the NDC have which proves that it is the government that murdered Kaaka Mohammed? Can they make that information available to the Ghanaian people?”, he asked.
”Let’s focus on building the nation. Why? Why has the NDC become something like without power, they simply cannot survive as a political party? Why? When they get power too, it is only just to take the entire country back,” he further rebuked the NDC.
There were heated exchanges in open court as the Member of Parliament for Assin Central Ken Ohene Agyepong and lawyers of investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas traded in vulgar language.
Under cross-examination lawyers of Anas sought to enquire about the personal competency of Ken Agyepong regarding a video he obtained from Salis Newspaper, one of the basis for his ‘Who Watches the Watchman.’
Unhappy with counsel’s use of the word “incompetent” the MP who is the respondent in the GHc25 million defamation suit from Anas, exploded in open court.
“The words he (counsel) used were an insult to me (Ken Agyepong). He earlier said I’m incompetent…You are foolish, who the hell do you think you are? I am a Member of Parliament. My Lord, he (Counsel) is disrespecting me. Have you campaigned before?, a visibly angry Ken Agyapong asked.
Sammy Darko, one of the lawyers of Anas rose to his feet and said if the witness (Ken Agyapong) disrespects the Bar, he is disrespecting the court.
According to him, the action and the conduct of the witness is disrespectful to the court.
The court presided over by Justice Eric Baah intervened and said, lawyers and witnesses address the court and not lawyers of the parties. If there is any foul language used, it goes against the dignity of the court.
The court said, ‘I agree that the unprinted words used by the defendant are not acceptable and I call on him to withdraw his words”
The court also urged Counsel for the plaintiff to also watch his words in dealing with the matter and urged him to focus on the substance of the case.
The Assin Central MP Ken Agyepong subsequently apologised to the court and tempers were calmed down.
The court accepted the apology of the witness but cautioned the lawyer for the plaintiff to be mindful of the words used.
Who Watches the Watchman
In the substantive matter, the court has ordered the showing of Ken Agyepong’s video titled ‘Who Watches the Watchman’.
The watching of the said video has become necessary after the Member of Parliament for Assin North mounted the witness box to give evidence.
The lawyer for Ken Agyepong, Rapheal Agyapong prior to adjourning proceedings prayed for the exhibits to be shown to the court.
Though the lawyers of Anas indicated that, the showing of the over 2 hours video will further delay the case, the court said, the proper procedure is that, the admissibility of the video can only be determined after it had been played.
Under cross-examination, Ken Agyepong told the court that, the Salis newspaper brought him the video and according to them, it was recorded as far back as 2010.
According to him, they brought it to him around 2018, when Kwesi Nyantakyi was accused by the plaintiff that the former GFA president was corrupt during his tenure as GFA boss.
Though agreed with counsel that, per his own admission he cannot testify to the authenticity of the content of the exhibits Who Watches Watchman, he explained that, “I can testify because, I did further investigations before, I showed the video.”
He said, the first video was recorded in Lagos Town in Accra and the second one was recorded in a prosecutor’s office.
‘The first video ‘KOA1’ and is titled ‘Who Watches The Watchman’. It happened in Lagos Town in Accra when the plaintiff was trying to extort money from a group of fraudsters who had gone to defraud a man who wanted to buy gold.
“The second one was the plaintiff talking to a prosecutor in the said case about how to destroy the case by giving the prosecutor $5k and also claimed to have given money to the CID Head,” he explained.
He further told the court that, ‘I’m not the author, but when I saw the video, I did my own investigations by calling some people im the video. I called Aziz and he confirmed that Yes, the meeting did happen at Lagos Town. Aziz further came on air to admit that it was true. I called the current EOCO director who was then the CID Director that the plaintiff mentioned in the video that he has given him (CID Director) money. So after the check then we showed the video. I admit that I’m not the author but I did my investigations to authenticate the truth in that video.
“My Lord, simply put, I was told and also saw the video to support what the Salis Newspaper told me. They have a video, that is what has been tendered in,” he noted.
Sometime in 2018, the ace international investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas dragged the Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin Central, Mr Kennedy Ohene Agyapong, to court for defaming him.
Anas was asking the High Court to award aggravated damages to the tune of GH¢25 million arising from defamatory materials published by the MP.
He said, the MP had been publishing materials in his bid to discredit the investigative journalist, who had released an explosive piece on the rot in Ghana football.
Displeased with the MP’s actions, Anas through his lawyer, Mr Kissi Agyebeng, sued Mr Agyapong for the award of general damages for defamation in the defendant’s publications.
A journalist, Mr Listowell Yesu Bukarson, has been granted the lawful attorney to stand in for Anas.
The publication complained of are a May 29, 2018, live programme in Twi on Adom TV, where Mr Agyapong categorically stated that Anas was a blackmailer, corrupt, an extortionist and evil.
According to the statement of claim, the defendant, in a similar manner, published defamatory words on May 31, 2018 via Oman FM, a private radio station owned by the defendant.
The statement of claim also stated that the defendant published more defamatory materials against the plaintiff via other platforms to the extent of releasing pictures purported to be those of the investigative journalist in his bid to blow the latter’s cover.
A resident of Assin North, Michael Ankomah Nimfah, petitioned the court that his MP, Joe Gyaakye Quayson, did not qualify to contest the 2020 Parliamentary elections because he held dual citizenship: Ghana and Canada, at the time of filing to contest.
The case has travelled for close to three months, and on Monday, the court presided over by Justice Kwasi Boakye announced the day for judgment after all ancillary matters have been dealt with.
Before the court adjourned sitting, it dealt with two motions that had come before him: the application for stay of proceedings and application for the MP’s lawyer, Abraham Amaliba, to withdraw his services.
Abraham Amaliba began his submission by saying he had no clue whether the MP has still not been served.
The judge asked him to enquire from the court registry, and after he did, he indicated on June 10, there were two attempts to serve the MP but the attempts were unsuccessful because the potential recipients at Parliament said the Parliament was in session.
Counsel for the petitioner, Frank Davies, represented to the Abraham Amaliba in the following words: “You’re a lawyer engaged by the MP-your client- to prosecute the case on his behalf.
If you intend to withdraw your services, I would have thought the same way you were engaged would be the same way you would use in your withdrawal.
“You communicate with him because you stand in for him, why should communicating to him that you can no longer be his lawyer a difficult issue?”
Frank Davies intimated that for the past two months, the story has been that the MP has not been served and his believes it’s a calculated attempt to delay the case unduly.
He added, “this is an election petition and time is of the essence and we believe in the expeditious trial of the case.”
The judge, Justice Kwasi Boakye, read CI 47 order 75 rule 5(2) and granted Abraham Amaliba his wishes to withdraw from the case and set a day for judgement after he dismissed the application for stay of proceedings filed by counsel for the 1st respondent because he found no merit in the application.
Mr Amaliba applied for a stay of proceedings because one of the issues he considers cardinal was not set down for trial.
The judge also intimated that the MP has not been coming to court and being represented by his lawyer and so he bears the risk of whatever happens if his lawyer fails to communicate the happenings in court to him.
After court proceedings, Abraham Amaliba told Joy news, the judge setting a date to deliver his judgment is irregular because his withdrawal from the case needs to be served on Joe Gyaakye Quayson, his client.
He explains Order 75 requires that when an order of this nature is made then the client involved should be served so he takes steps to procure the services of another lawyer who would represent him.
“This order has not yet been served on the first respondent, and so we wait to see whether this order would be served on the first respondent before July 14, when judgement has been scheduled.
“If that is not done, then what happened in court flies in the face of order 75, but as it stands now, I see some indecent haste in this case, but at the end of the day, the rules must be applied, and we must all go by the rules.”
Representative of the petitioner, Richard Tachie-Mensah expressed their side’s happiness about the decision in court on Monday, June 28. He says the delay tactics could not go on unabated and that they are happy finality is being brought to the matter He added, “Let us also bear in mind that this is an election petition and definiteness has to be brought on the issue. The delay tactics cannot be done in perpetuity.
“The people must know the outcome of the case, whether their MP wins or he loses the case, so they could be clear in their minds who would represent them. Thank God that come the July 14, finality would be brought on the matter.”
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has expressed satisfaction with work so far undertaken on the construction of a GH¢36 million watermelon juice factory, being established in Walewale in the North East Region.
Touring the facility on Tuesday, 22nd June 2021, at the commencement of his 2-day tour of the North East Region, President Akufo-Addo visited Champion Foods and Beverages Limited, a wholly-owned Ghanaian beverage manufacturing, distribution and marketing company.
The President was informed that the company is employing the use of PET line technology, as compared to the Tetra Packs technology, and it is being financed with a facility from the Ghana EXIM Bank.
With minor construction works to be undertaken, President Akufo-Addo was informed that the overall project is 90% complete, with offices and staff accommodation at 80% completion, and plant, equipment, and machinery all on site ready to be installed.
Full operationalization of the factory has been deferred to March 2022, with the company having installed a 10 metric tonnes per hour facility.
It is expected that, upon completion, the company will create direct employment opportunities for 300 Ghanaians and over 2,000 indirect workers, including farmers and aggregators, to be engaged in an out-grower scheme, covering parts of North East, Northern and other Regions of the country.
1D1F TAMANA RICE FACTORY
The President also visited Tamanaa Company Ltd., a rice farming and processing company located in Nasia near Walewale, which is also operating under Government’s 1-District-1-Factory initiative.
As a result of the support received from Government, the company has been able to expand its operations, by adding a 250-metric ton per day rice milling facility, to its already existing 40 metric ton per day plant.
So far, some 148 workers have been employed, with the company generating a turnover of some $1.5 million annually. The company markets 60% of its rice as parboiled and the remaining 40% as non-parboiled under the brand name Nasia Star Rice.
Tamanaa company currently engages over 4,000 rice farmers and aggregators operating in the West Mamprusi, East Mamprusi, Savulugu, Nanton and Mamprugu-Moagduri Districts
• Asiedu Nketia is unhappy with the decision by the Chief Justice to haul Dr. Dominic Ayine before the GLCnull
• He says the Chief Justice is trying to gag lawyers from commenting on issues
• He says the NDC will resist any attempt to silence its members
Johnson Asiedu Nketia, the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress has issued yet another caution to Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah over his petition to the General Legal Council over some comments made by a former Deputy Attorney-General, Dr Dominic Ayine.
Asiedu Nketia in an interview with Adom TV reminded the Chief Justice that the respect and confidence of legal practitioners must be earned and not forced.
He maintained that the NDC will resist any attempt by the Chief Justice to gag them or frustrate its members.
“You earn the faith and belief of the people; you do not force it. What is Dr Ayine going to explain and to whom because I don’t even know who is the chairman of the council,” he said.null
“We have realized the Chief Justice is trying to intimidate Dr Ayine but we also want to tell him that you may want to scare a Zongo boy but not with a long beard,” he said.
Dr Dominic Ayine has been dragged to the GLC by the Chief Justice after making some statements which he considers to be an attack on the Supreme Court.
The Chief Justice said that Dominic Ayine’s comments in which he accused the Supreme Court of bias were unbefitting of a lawyer.
“These comments are made against the backdrop of the Supreme Court discharging Dr. Ayine on a charge of contempt for similar comments made against members of the Supreme Court during the Election Petition hearing. Dr. Ayine apologized profusely when he appeared before the Court on the contempt charge and admitted to having made comments which were unbecoming of a Lawyer of his standing and a former Deputy Attorney-General.
“His Lordship the Chief Justice, therefore, finds his alleged disparaging comments totally unacceptable and would like you to investigate this matter further,” the petition averred.
Speaker Alban Bagbin has said the question filed by North Tongu MP Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa about the cost of President Nana Akufo-Addo’s recent 9-day international trip on a chartered flight, will definitely be answered, denying media reports that he had rejected the question.
Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta appealed to the house for more time to collate his figures on the trip when he appeared in Parliament on Thursday, 17 June 2021.
Denying claims that he had rejected the question, Mr Bagbin said in the house that: “Let me disagree with what has been put on social media that the honourable speaker rejected the questions”.
“There is no iota of truth in that publication”.
“The questions were admitted and forwarded to the ministers and the ministers have indicated to me their readiness to come and answer the questions, so, it will be no problem”.
“The business committee should do the right thing and get them programmed for the minister to come and answer.”
Mr Ablakwa also denied the media reports.
“Kindly disregard and treat with contempt the fake news in circulation, claiming that the Rt. Honourable Speaker has rejected my urgent questions to the Defence and Minister of Finance on the state of the presidential jet and the total cost of President Akufo-Addo’s recent profligate luxury travels to France, Belgium and South Africa, respectively.”
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Dominic Nitiwul has he intends to petition the National Media Commission in connection with an attribution made to him by the media, in relation to a story about the presidential jet which, in his view, was calculated mischief.
According to him, the reports by the media that he had said President Nana Akufo-Addo could not shower in the Falcon, and, thus, it was not fit for his international travels, were wrong, since, they were couched out of wrong inferences from his comments on the floor of Parliament.
“I said ‘no president can shower in this aircraft’. I never said Akufo-Addo or John Mahama or Kufuor”, Mr Nitiwul explained to Paul Adom-Otchere on Metro TV’s Good Evening Ghana programme on Thursday, 17 June 2021.
“In fact, three presidents have used this aircraft – Mills, Mahama and Akufo-Addo”, he noted.
“I was very amazed they [media] chose to say: ‘Akufo-Addo cannot shower in it’” he noted.
“Why didn’t they say ‘John Mahama could not shower in it’? Why didn’t they say ‘President Mills could not shower in it’? Why didn’t they say that? That’s why I said it was pure mischief”, he stressed.
In his answer to parliament on Wednesday, 16 June 2021, the Bimbilla MP said: “This aircraft will carry a load of 11 persons minus the crew. When this aircraft is travelling to the eastern part of the USA or Asia, it will not load a crew of more than eight plus the luggage”.
“So, it depends on where it is going”, he noted.
Secondly, he added, “I have also said the aircraft has to do refuelling stops and, also, in this COVID-19 [era], when you are travelling to multiple destinations like the president’s recent travels, the Falcon couldn’t have been taken because he would have had to do technical stops, which are not desirable”.
“And when he is travelling with more than 20 people like he has been doing for business trips that brought huge sums of money to this country, he will need more than just a Falcon, otherwise, the others would have to go a day ahead before the president to prepare themselves.”
“In fact, the president would also have to go a day ahead because no president can shower in this aircraft. He cannot move from this aircraft straight into a meeting”, Mr Nitiwul said.
In the heat of the controversy, the Minority in Parliament said President Akufo-Addo could have used Ghana’s “airworthy” presidential jet, Falcon 9Gexe, instead of chartering the £15,000-per-hour “lavish, ostentatious and extravagant” AJC320neo flight he recently used for his 9-day trip abroad that cumulatively cost the Ghanaian taxpayer £345,000 (GHS2,828,432.80). “Today, we want to present to you further evidence that we are definitely certain that the presidential jet is available, in good shape”, Mr Ablakwa told journalists on Friday, 28 May 2021.
According to him, on 11 May 2021 – five days ahead of his 9-day trip – the president used the presidential jet to Uganda to attend the ceremony swearing-in of President-elect Yoweri Museveni.
Denying claims that the Falcon cannot travel long hours without refueling, Mr Ablakwa said the president’s Uganda trip on the presidential jet was 5h:4m while his Paris trip took six-and-a-half hours.
“The Minority insists that the Falcon could have been used”, Mr Ablakwa stressed. “One, the Falcon is airworthy and it took this same president to Uganda only a few days prior to the 16th of May when the president departed to Paris with this rather luxurious monster; the most outstanding, extravagant, luxurious airbus aircraft to be manufactured – the Airbus AJC320neo, which originally was manufactured to take 150 people at the minimum but it has been reconfigured to take only 17 people so a luxurious empire can be created”, he said.
In the Minority’s view, instead of the president using the chartered flight, which has a master bedroom, an en-suite bathroom with showers, dining facilities for all 17 passengers and sophisticated IT connectivity installations, he could have opted for other chartered flights from the same company, Acropolis Aviation.
“First of all, our contention is that the Falcon is available”, he stressed, emphasising: “It’s airworthy”.
“If it can take you to Uganda safely, it can take you to Paris safely and Brussels, Belgium safely”, he argued. “So, the point we are trying to emphasise is that in this time of austerity, where the president himself has said: Times are rough; let’s bear with him’, … the president himself embarked on this trip to go and beg for debt forgiveness and this is how you go and beg for debt forgiveness when the person you are going to beg for debt forgiveness from doesn’t travel in such luxury, in such ostentation”, noting: “The level of extravagance, the extreme opulence that the president displayed is condemnable, unconscionable”.
“How do you think these western leaders will perceive African leaders? No wonder they have very little respect for a lot of our leaders but we cannot continue this way”, Mr Ablakwa said
Atik Mohammed, Executive Secretary of the Mass Action Movement, has urged the leadership of National Security to upgrade their security tactics to clamp down on criminals in the country.null
According to him, crime has become sophisticated, so to fight it demands a high level of sophistication.
He was commenting on the recent criminal activities in the country which involve recent armed robbery attacks on bullion vans.
There have been two bullion van attacks within the week.
On Monday, June 14, a Police officer and a woman in her forties were shot dead by armed robbers who attacked a bullion van at Jamestown in the Greater Accra Region.
The driver survived by gunshot wounds while two other women on the vehicle escaped unscathed.
Another bullion van attack reportedly happened on Thursday, June 17 on the Kasoa road.null
The occupants escaped unhurt amidst gunshots from the assailants.
Expressing concerns over the recent happenings, Atik Mohammed charged the National Security to train more experts to be proactive in fighting crimes.
He stated, “It is just not enough to change labels. You go and change BNI to NIB. It doesn’t imply that their work has become unique or you’ve taken it to the next level. You merely changed labels and changing of labels does not fight crime. I would have expected that the BNI early on used to do their work in this form but [AB] we have introduced a new technology. We have trained people to become experts in areas where we didn’t have experts in earlier.”
Atik Mohammed asked, ”what are our security agencies doing to make sure that they are at par? In fact, with crime, you always have to be ahead. What are they doing to equip themselves well enough to be ahead of these criminals?”
“Society is growing; it’s modernized. Crime is keeping pace . . . The truth is that it is outpacing [the way] even though there is modernity but crime is also trying to keep pace. But our management of crime or fight against crime is not at pace with what the criminals are doing. When you look at our security architecture, it’s lagging behind,” he emphasized
• Baako says Ablakwa should wait for the Finance Minister to answer his questions on the cost of President Akufo-Addo’s trip to France, Belgium, France and South Africanull
• He says his conduct are not befitting of a member of parliament
• Kwakye Ofosu however disagrees
Abdul Malik Kweku Baako Jnr, the Editor-in-Chief of the Crusading Guide newspaper has chided the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, for misconducting himself with his public commentaries on the use of a luxurious aircraft by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
Baako on Metro TV’s Good Morning Ghana lost his cool and took on Ablakwa for acting in ways which in his view are inappropriate for a member of parliament.
He noted that Ablakwa is not respecting the standing orders of Parliament with his commentaries on the issue.null
Baako fumed that having submitted questions on the cost of President Akufo-Addo’s trip to France, Belgium and South Africa, Ablakwa should have waited for the Finance Minister to answer the questions before running to the media.
He suggested that his conduct is prejudicial and shows a lack of faith in the parliamentary process.
“What he did was irresponsible. You set questions before Parliament, expecting answers and you are out there. You can’t ask questions and go out there.
“I heard Ablakwa talking about 200,000, 2.8 million and all that, it is needless. Completely needless at this stage. He ought to wait for the Minister of Finance to come to the house and give answers relative to the financial package. It’s a needless reaction that reflects what Ablakwa has been doing all along. He didn’t need the minister of Defence’s reference to cost. The Minister’s answer was not an answer to Ablakwa’s question which is tailored for the Minister of Finance.
But Felix Kwakye Ofosu, a member of the National Democratic Congress dissented to the views by Kweku Baako.null
Kwakye Ofosu argued that Ablakwa like every other Ghanaian has a right to free speech and could use every legitimate platform to air his views on issues.
“Parliament is not the only forum he could use. There are other platforms that he can use as a Ghanaian and he did that,” he said.
Okudzeto Ablakwa in a reaction to Dominic Nitiwul’s statement on the trip suggested that the country was bound for destruction under the Akufo-Addo regime.
He tweeted, “How on Earth can the Defence Minister tell Parliament cost doesn’t matter in considering which aircraft to charter for the President! We are really doomed!!!’ he posted.
Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Kweku Baako has supported the Inspector General of Police’s order to banks to provide armoured bullion vans for carting currencies or else he will withdraw his men from escort duties.null
The IGP, James Oppong-Boanuh issued a statement to remind the bankers that the directive will take effect by the end of June, 2021.
The statement followed the murder of a Police officer at Jamestown.
Armed robbers on a number of motorbikes attacked a bullion van at Jamestown, killing two people including the Police officer, Emmanuel Osei, and hurting the driver before absconding with some money.
An account by the Police read; “Preliminary investigation shows that unidentified armed men on a number of motorbikes crossed the bullion van which was on a pay/collection errand at about 1100 hours and shot at the police officer who was on escort duty on the van, killing him instantly. The armed men also fired sporadically in the air and on the driver, who sustained gunshot wounds and is responding to treatment.”
“A hawker was also killed by the armed men when one of two ladies on the bullion van stepped out of the van and run towards the deceased seller’s direction. Both ladies on the van, tellers of Mon-tran escaped unhurt but were sent to the hospital to be treated for trauma. Crime scene experts have already visited the scene of crime and are going through the necessary procedures.”
The IGP has directed the “Director-General Criminal Investigation Department to take over the investigation into the attack on a bullion van at Adedenpo, a suburb of James Town in Accra on 14th June 2021, which led to the murder of a police officer”.null
He also threatened the banks will forfeit Police protection should any fail to purchase an armoured van when the ultimatum elapses.
“The IGP is also reminding the Association of Bankers to provide fortified armoured vehicles for carting currencies by the close of June 2021 as earlier agreed between them and the Police Service, lest the Police withdraws its officers for escort duties,” the statement read.
Making submissions on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’, Kweku Baako stressed it is in the right order for the IGP to caution the banks against using ordinary vans to transport currencies.
He also dissented to views that the Police should procure the armoured vans for the banks.
“I disagree with the idea that the Police should buy and hire it. I disagree with it; I don’t get where that drift is coming from. But rather, the banks, it is in their own interest,” he asserted.
A former Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Bernard Okoe-Boye, has called for severe punishment for the mechanic who was caught using a state ambulance to carry cement. The former lawmaker for Ledzokuku told TV3 on Wednesday June 2 that the failure to punish such a person will serve as an incentive to others who are also handling the other ambulances to do same or even worse.
The National Ambulance Service has revealed that mechanics repairing their ambulance used it to purchase cement as was captured in a video that went viral on social media.
A statement issued on Tuesday, June 1, 2021, by the Ambulance Service said the incident happened on March 26, 2021.
“The Ambulance is still in the custody of Service Ghana Autogroup Ltd., and therefore not being used by the paramedics of the National Ambulance Service. It is thus not part of the National Ambulance Service Fleet”, the statement said.
The Public Relations Officer of the National Ambulance Service, Mr Simon Yusif Kawula in media interviews said “The investigation we did revealed that this particular ambulance was being used by the mechanics of the suppliers. It is an ambulance under the 1 Constituency 1 Ambulance, and it is stationed at Sege.
“This ambulance developed a gearbox problem, so it was sent to the suppliers, so they also gave it to their mechanics at Mamprobi called Nana Ofosu Gearbox enterprise. After they fixed the problem and were doing a test drive, they drove to the Mallam – Cape Coast highway, and that was when they went to purchase cement.
“It was not the staff of the Ambulance Service who were using the ambulance at that time, but rather the mechanics,” he explained.
Commenting on this development, Dr Okoe-Boye said “I wasn’t surprised when I saw this because if you know human nature people can be very reckless or indiscipline if there is no threats of punishment. I expect whichever garage the gentleman works with to sanction the individual who did this and the public must know that either he has lost his job or they have taken away that contract of servicing.
“If the whole company loses this contract because of the attitude of this guy whichever company handles the other ambulances will make sure that it is strictly monitored when it comes into their hands.
This is of one of the few instances that you realize that there are people in this country who don’t care about what happens to the country, it is about them, they want to fix their home , they want to build their house even if they have to use an ambulance to carry stones they don’t care.”